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Document Details


Title: Luna, Gregory
Document type: Oral history
Accessibility: Free Only
Repository: University of Texas, Arlington. Central Library. Special Collections Department
Collection: Tejano Voices: University of Texas at Arlington Center for Mexican American Studies Oral History Project
Description: The interview covers Luna's role in organizing MALDEF (Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund) with Pete Tijerina; Warren Burnett's role in the Del Rio protest; the Ford Foundation's role as the first funder of MALDEF; conflict with Chicanos in California; how Luna became chair of MALDEF; Henry B. Gonzáles' opposition to MALDEF and his relations with Pete Tijerina and José Angel Gutiérrez; the roles of Gonzáles, Tijerina, Gutiérrez, and Rep. Mills (first name not given) in the move of MALDEF's national office from Texas to San Francisco; Mario Obledo's chairmanship of MALDEF; Luna's entry into politics via his election to the State Democratic Executive Committee (SDEC) and as state representative. The interview also mentions the campaign of Joe Bernal for an unspecified office (Luna was campaign manager) and La Raza Unida's part in his defeat. Luna also recounts the creation of Mexican American Democrats as a counterforce to La Raza Unida, gives his opinion of MAD's split, and explains his withdrawal from participation in MAD and SDEC. He discusses his theory on why national unity among Mexican American leaders and organizations has been elusive, why Mexican American voter turnout is still low, and his motivation for running for office. Luna describes interaction among members of the Mexican American political community; discusses efforts made to improve higher education in South Texas; and gives his opinions of the role of women in the Texas Legislature and in politics (he especially mentions Irma Rangel and Judith Zaffirini), the role of Mexican American studies in higher education, and on the Mexican American leaders of today.
Extent: 51 pages
URL: http://libraries.uta.edu/tejanovoices/transcripts/TV_004.html
Original Language: English
Audio: [Audio available]
Time span: Not indicated ... to 1996 (Year of interview)
Speaker: Luna, Gregory, 1931-
Speaker gender: Male
Speaker date of birth: 1931
Speaker place of birth: New Braunfels, TX; Texas; United States; North America
Age at speaking: 65
Document location: San Antonio, TX
Document date: 01-Jul-1996
Interviewer: Gutierrez, Jose Angel
Organizations discussed: La Raza Unida Party, Crystal City, TX; Mexican American Democrats of Texas; Texas. State Legislature
Locations discussed: North America; San Antonio, TX; Texas; United States
Topics discussed - ASP terms: Community; Education, Higher; Hispanic American leadership--Texas; Hispanic American women; Hispanic Americans--Texas; La Raza Unida Party, Crystal City, TX; Law--Texas; Mexican American Democrats of Texas; North America; Political campaigns--Texas; San Antonio, TX; Texas; Texas. State Legislature; Texas--Politics and government; United States; Voting; Women; Women politicians
ASP release: 2005-06
Document code: OHI0000215-160