Joe Arpaio's Teen Foes in Adios Arpaio Rally at State Capitol
Nowakowski fires up Adios Arpaio's teen volunteers at the state Capitol
More than 100 members of Adios Arpaio, the union-funded movement of Latino high-school students looking to drive Sheriff Joe Arpaio from power, rallied on the lawn of the state House in Phoenix on Thursday afternoon to announce that they're closing in on surpassing their goal of registering 30,000 new county voters.
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So far, Adios Arpaio has registered 27,810 individuals, nearly every one of them ready to cast a ballot against Arpaio. The group, which is a combination of the efforts of Campaign For Arizona's Future and Promise Arizona in Action, has until midnight on Tuesday, October 9, to submit registration forms.
Nowakowski likened the work of Adios Arpaio to that of a massive, state-wide voter registration campaign led by human rights activist Cesar Chavez in the 1970s. That drive was part of an effort to recall infamous, anti-Latino Arizona Governor "One-Eyed Jack" Williams.
Though the recall of Williams was unsuccessful, mainly due to the political shenanigans of his allies, more than 150,000 new voters were added to the rolls. And as a result, in 1974, Arizona's first and only Mexican-American Governor was elected, Raul Castro.
"This reminds me of back in the '70s when Cesar Chavez came to Arizona, and said ya basta, enough is enough of all the abuses that are going on in the fields," Nowakowski said in a spirited address that got the teens pumped up.
"The farmworkers didn't even have a place to go to the restroom...to drink water...they didn't get paid a decent salary," he added.
"It was a movement that was created here in Arizona, a movement that got young people engaged to go out there and register all kinds of individuals. And today here in the city of Phoenix, we have the same type of movement, a movement of young people."
Nowakowski observed that Chavez, "passed away 20 years ago," but that he lives on in the teenagers at the rally.
"You asked who Cesar Chavez is," Nowakowski stated, turning to a girl next to him. "What's your name?"
"Cecilia," she answered.
"Cecilia is Cesar Chavez," said Nowakowski.
He did the same with another girl named Rosa.
"Rosa is Cesar Chavez," declared the councilman. "All of these young people are Cesar Chavez today."