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the marchers the courage to continue, “and may they find at the end of their march that it was not in vain.” AFTER THE RALLY two tall, gangly, slightly tanked-up farmers from near Saspamco, wearing overalls, got in an argument with’Father Gonzales. The farm ers stood, not as sheep to shepherd, but man to man, and spoke with resentment. One of them said he had been reading about the march in the Alamo Messenger, the Catholic paper in San Antonio, and hearing about it from Father Carlos at the church, which he attends. He told the priest that he couldn’t pay $1.25; that it would be cheaper for him to automate and not hire workers. Father Gonzales asked him if he would work for 40 cents an hour. No, he would not, he said, because he couldn’t as Father Gonzales would know if he realized how much he owed at the bank. Neither side was convinced. They had talked. R.D. From a Senator in Rain to a Church San Antonio In a short, dynamic appearance, Sen. Ralph Yarborough gave the Valley marchers a shot of adrenalin here last Saturday morning a few hours before they slogged through a driving rain into the San Fernando Cathedral and the blessings of Archbishop Robert E. Lucey. Yarborough told the marchers that 29 years ago, when Franklin Delano Roose-, velt sent his historic message to Congress for a minimum wage, he said it was intended to protect workers in factories and farms. During the last three days in Washington, the senator said, they had mustered the necessary votes in Congress to bring some farm -workers under the law for the first time. Each state should have its own minimum wage, yet Texas. has none, he said. As a result, he continued, “Texas has more people in the poverty bracket than any other state in the union,” and this will not change until a minimum wage is passed. “That’s one Texas brag we can’t be proud of,” he said. The marchers had started out that morning from Mission San Juan Capistrano, and Yarborough, whose long suit is history, reminded them that when Father Hidalgo raised the first grito, partisans marched south from San Juan Capistrano in that cause. “Anglos and Latinos have met here again today to march for a great purpose,” Yarborough said. In a burst of enthusiasm Yarborough called out, “Viva el campesino! Viva America! Viva victory for the workers of America!” Republicans outnumbered Democrats in local candidates on the sceneincluding John O’Connell, GOP candidate for county commissioner against 011ie Wurzbach. State senatorial nominees Joe Bernal, Democrat, and Phil Pyndus, Republican, were both present. The Republicans gave out a statement welcoming the marchers, endorsing “a decent living wage. . . . as determined between workers and their employees,” and asking for an end to border commuters: The official greeter for the city, Councilman Herbert Calderon, sent his excuses rally at Mission County Park, and this so angered the crowd of about 300, they pre, vented the reading of Calderon’s letter by booing and calling out against it, “No lettersjust bodies.” Walking along at the head of the march, Father Gonzales confirmed a report that “all the bishops of Texas,” eight bishops and the Archbishop of San Antonio, have written Gov. John Connally asking him to meet with the marchers in Austin on Labor Day. Of the letter he said, “It’s a strong one, asking him to consider the Valley marchers and their efforts to achieve a sadly needed minimum wage.” The marchers carried a large sign, “Viva. la huelga,” and they called out, not only that slogan, but also “Viva Emiliano Zapata,” “Arriba Pancho Villa,” and “Viva la raza!” State Reps. Curtis Graves, a Negro, and Lauro Cruz, a Mexican-American, from Houston, were among the marchers; Cruz called out, “Abajo con el miedo!” which means “Down with fear!” AFTER A BRIEF REST in the courtyard of St. John’s Seminary, whose chapel chimes played continuously during the stop, the marchers were preparing to set out for downtown when a dark rain began falling. “Nothing can stop this The sermon by His Excellency, Most Rev. Robert E. Lucey, Archbishop of San Antonio, during a mass for the marchers at San Fernando Cathedral on August 27: My dear brethren: The presence here of so many Texas citizens of Mexican descent is a symbol of a new era in human relations throughout the Southwest and in other parts of our nation. Until a few months ago a MexicanAmerican was expected to be docile in the face of injustice inflicted on him by .certain powerful groups. Historically our Spanish speaking citizens have endured poverty, discrimination, scorn, and contempt from unworthy employers who had forgotten the law of love. It has often happened that honest working people did not dare complain when they had to work for starvation wages because they were in a vulnerable position; they could be dismissed from their employment and they had no one to defend them or plead their cause. Some sort of wage, even an unfair one, was better than losing one’s job and having no income whatever. Through the years our Spanish speaking people have suffered in silence the injustices heaped upon them either by individuals or by a badly organized social order. But now our citizens of Mexican descent have learned that there is a law of justice in industry and agriculture which should by applied to them; they have learned that they should not suffer cruelty and discrimination without protest or complaint; they have learned that they have a certain march,” someone called out from the flatbed truck, and the Rio Grande City marchers, dressed in worn work clothes, each with a blue bandanna, led the way, trailing behind the well dressed well-wishers, perhaps a dozen priests and two large contingents of nuns. A few dropped out, but not many, and the rain seemed to lift the marchers’ spirits, even though about half of them had neither raincoats nor umbrellas and were quickly soaked to the skin. “It’s Saturday anyway,” said one; “If you’re not all wet you’re not with us,” said Cty. Cmsr. Albert Pena. A priest pointed to heaven and said, “The’ Establishment is even up there,” and while conceding that God works in wondrous and mysterious ways, wished He’d be a little more direct. However many might have joined the marchers as they approached the Cathe dignity as human beings and they must not sell their souls to servitude; they must stand up and defend themselves against discrimination and oppression. . . . It is with a large measure of reluctance and regret that we endorse and approve your demand for an hourly wage of a dollar and twenty-five cents. No sane man would consider that a fair wage in these days when the high cost of living requires a much better return for your labor, and we join you in desiring that this inadequate wage be granted to you only because you have known the sorrow of cruel wages in the past and this objective of yours is a step in the right direction. We would hope, however, that the conscience of America, the power of the government, and your own determination will persuade your employers to behave like human beings and grant you steadily increasing wages so that you and your families may live in decent and frugal comfort. A wage of a dollar and a quarter an hour is ghastly recompense for exhausting labor under the burning sun of Texas. This explanation and this apology to the nation are necessary because I’ have approved this brutal wage scale. May God be with you as you march to Austin, the capital city of our state, and may your reception there be in complete harmony with your dignity as human beings, American citizens, and children of God. May He bless you abundantly in the years that lie ahead. September 2-, 1966 5 `Ghastly Recompense Under the Sun