Foro Comunitario organized on behalf of Latin Community by Democratic leaning group, Make The Road – Nevada
This event was held at Plumbers and Pipefitters union hall in North Las Vegas and the discussion was led by the Legislators and s Candidate (all Democrats)
- Very lively discussion, almost entirely in Spanish
- One of the few opportunities I have witnessed where the Latino working class were given a voice
- Like a lot of Democratic events, it seems that the the Latino working class are being used to express how terrible things are, so that, then, the candidates can identify with their misery and promise to have the government do something.
- At no time are they told how they can excel or encouraged to believe that they are capable of taking measures that will change their lives
- I fell that the Democrats need these complaints and feelings of hopelessness—other than believing that a new government program or funding is going to come and rescue them
- This opens the way for much more fruitful communications
My role in the meeting during my two interventions
First, I asked if, over the last few years, the government seems to be getting better or worse and no one objected to the “complainer’s” assessment that things are getting worse.
- From my point of view that means that government can’t really solve their problem (of increasing rents for the complainer), with the implication being that the government is not going to rescue everyone and that they should be looking toward doing something different for themselves.
- From their point of view, however, this situation points out the need for the government to control rents and, if anything, the implication was “that they could have hope that the legislators present would introduce a bill to control rents”
Second, I talked about all the good things that a subway system in the resort area would produce
- First I said it would actually reduce the congestion that the guest speaker had said was making Las Vegas one of the most polluted cities in the nation
- Second I enumerated ways it would bring more tourists and provide more individual opportunities to work or do business
While the guest criticized Uber and Lyft for actually producing MORE pollution than before, because there are more cars on the road, I think most people present could identify in their minds with the fact that Mexico City could not function without its subway system (one of the biggest in the world)
- In addition, they can identify with the image of people living together in big cities.
- For some reason a middle school teacher from Hyde Park Middle School, which has very high ratings, who had previously implied that parents can find better schools for their children, could identify with what I talked about and spoke to me after the meeting.
The issue that has to be tackled is communicating new information and/or in a new way about how leaders should be bringing new opportunities and signaling how people should think in terms of what they can do with what exists already or can be created
Make the Road Nevada (MRNV) builds the power of Latino and working class communities to achieve dignity and justice through organizing, policy innovation, civic engagement and transformative education.