After relocating to California, he married and got involved in the Community Service Organization (CSO), through which he helped laborers register to vote. In 1959, he became the CSO's national director, a position based in Los Angeles.
Like Indian independence leader Mahatma Gandhi, Chavez emphasized direct but nonviolent tactics to pressure farm owners into granting strikers' demands. He imbued his campaign with Catholic symbolism, including public processions, masses, and fasts.
With his pro-union and nonviolent tactics, Chavez helped the farm workers' cause to generate broad nationwide support, most notably the Delano grape strike of 1965–70, which brought worldwide attention to the plight of U.S. farm laborers and migrant workers. He is famous for popularizing the motto, "Si, se puedes" (meaning "Yes, we can" in Spanish).
San Jose, Calif. is proud to be home to Plaza de Cesar Chavez, commemorating the Mexican-American farm worker and union activist. Plaza de Cesar Chavez hosts many multi-culteral festivals and events, including San Jose's world-famous "Christmas in the Park" annual holiday celebration.
Cesar Chavez Day was first proclaimed in 1994. It is celebrated in California, Florida and Texas. It is a legal holiday in California.
Image courtesy of www.wikipedia.org.
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