Chicano - a political term made popular in the sixties with the Chicano Civil Rights Movement which followed the example of the Black Civil Rights Movement. The people of the Movement adopted the word Chicano for themselves just as the African Americans had adopted Black. The Chicano Movement fought for all people of the Southwest of Mexican descendancy. These people included those whose ancestors had been citizens in the southwest when it was Mexico before the United States occupied it in 1848. These people became citizens by default with all rights guaranteed to them under the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. The Chicano Movement also included three waves of immigrants from Mexico: those who migrated because they were escaping the Mexican Revolution between 1900 and 1914; those who came between World War I and 1930, mainly for economic reasons; and those who came between World War II and the 1960's. Several of those who came in the 1940's came with organized labor programs such as the Bracero Program and decided to stay, even if undocumented.
The Chicano Movement and the Treaty of Gudalupe Hidalgo - After the United States won the Mexican American War the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo was executed on February 2, 1848. Under the treaty, Mexico ceded to the United States a large area including, California, Arizona, New Mexico, parts of what we know today as Colorado, Nevada, Wyoming and Utah. The annexation of Texas was also approved. All the citizens who had resided in what had been Mexico were given one year to make a choice to remain in what was now the U. S. or go to what was now Mexico. It is estimated that 75,000 Mexicans decided to stay and became citizens of the U. S. by default. The treaty provided specific guarantees for the property and political rights of the "native" population and they were given the right to retain their language, religion and culture.
Almost immediately, the treaty was broken and these people were treated like foreigners in...
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