Coalition goes to Austin to block 'racist' Mexican-American textbook

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A group of protesters are in Austin to make sure a textbook they call offensive doesn't make it into classrooms. (KTRK)

More than 100 people went to Austin to stop a textbook from ever making its way into Texas classrooms. Opponents say the book, Mexican-American Heritage, depicts Mexicans as lazy and is riddled with factual errors.

The Texas State Board of Education is reviewing the proposed book and heard public comments on Tuesday. Speaker after speaker stood before the board saying the book gets a failing grade.

"It should not be in front of students because it would actually misrepresent, the culture and the heritage of Latinos in this state," said state, Senator Sylvia Garcia.

A group of 100 people from Houston took buses to the state capitol so they could sit in on the meeting. Tony Diaz organized the buses.

"You have publishers that have created a textbook that says Mexicans are lazy," said Tony Diaz, a writer and activist.

The CEO of the company that published the book, Cynthia Dunbar, said 'that's not true.' She said people are taking the book out of context.

"The book actually put forward areas where Mexican-Americans have had to overcome hardships. One of the things was a racial stereotype where businesses were trying to justify their desire to only hire Europeans instead of Mexican-Americans," said Dunbar.
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A group of protesters are headed to Austin this week. Their mission -- to make sure a textbook they call offensive doesn't make it into classrooms.

It's not just the racial concern, Diaz and other opponents are also upset about history excluded from the book. They claim the book omitted the successes of Mexican-American soldiers.

Dunbar says the authors did not intentionally leave information out and said it's difficult to include everything in one textbook.

"If Mr. Diaz was concerned about that, you would have thought he would have connected with all these scholars himself, submitted a book with the kind of content he says needs to be included," said Dunbar.

The board is set to vote on whether it will accept or reject the book in November.
Related Topics:
educationtexas newsschoolbooksracismmexicoAustin
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