Controversial 'Mexican-American Heritage' textbook at center of fight

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Fight continues against Mexican American Heritage textbook, Jessica Willey reports. (KTRK)

Inside a small room at the TBH, an East End theater, opponents of a textbook on Mexican heritage were mobilizing.

"We've had the leading professors go through the book. They came up with 50 pages of errors because they ran out of time and they got tired," organizer Tony Diaz told the room.

Next week, this group and many others like it across the state are heading to Austin to express concerns about a proposed textbook called "Mexican American Heritage."

Opponents say it is racist and, at one point, depicts Mexican immigrants as "lazy." They say the publisher has it all wrong.

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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.



"We want to make sure the textbooks that are shaping our childrens' minds are correct, informative and it would be nice if they inspire as well, and this textbook does not do any of that," Diaz told Eyewitness News after the planning meeting.

"I care about my culture and about Latinos and I don't want some racist textbook to show the youth something different from what I learned," explained Carolina Hernandez, 17.

The State Board of Education is set to vote on the textbook next Friday. If approved, it's up to school districts to decide whether to use it.

"I want people to understand our culture,," added Jose Fredy Flores-Rodriguez, Jr, 22.

The book has been through some revisions. The publisher told Eyewitness News people are taking it out of context and that it's designed to expose racism, not perpetuate it.

To learn more about the group's efforts to "Reject the Text," go to www.librotraficante.com.
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