Monday, August 26, 2013

Milwaukee's Mexican Fiesta Facing Boycott For 2014

Excercising free speech with the birds and P.O. Alexander C. Ayala

Photos: Facebook 

Editorial:

Mexican Fiesta, the Milwaukee Police Department, Latino Peace Officers Association and the City of Milwaukee facing possible legal action for alleged illegal acts by local police and Fiesta officials.

By H. Nelson Goodson
August 26, 2013

Milwaukee, WI - Over the weekend, Milwaukee Police Officer Alexander C. Ayala confirmed, that the Milwaukee Police Department was using their Intelligence Center (IT) to help identify alleged gang members or affiliated members inside the Summerfest grounds during Mexican Fiesta 2013 in order to kick them out of the festival and bar them from ever attending the event. The reason according to Ayala, they want a family environment and no violence. 
Multiple victims who were at the festival were singled out and identified by the Milwaukee Police Department (MPD) as "past, present or future" gang members,  according to Ayala's explanation. In fact, non of those escorted out or kicked out were ever provided with any proof of the allegations brought upon them by Officer Ayala, the security volunteers of the Latino Peace Officers Association (LPOA) or MPD. Is the intelligence used from IT accurate enough to kick someone out of fiesta? What ever happened to due process? 
The victims that were kicked out didn't even get refunds and the practice to "identify" had been active for the last three years.
Were any of the people kicked out gang affiliated? So what, it's not illegal to belong to a gang. It only becomes illegal when a gang or a member engages in criminal activity.
Mexican Fiesta should embrace the community and not discriminate its people, which it profits from to generate funds for scholarships. Also, Fiesta should be helping to steer the younger generation from gangs and should be paramount instead of making them outcasts as Officer Ayala attempts to portray.
Even Mexican Fiesta volunteers of the event were stopped inside the grounds and got their tattoos checked out first before they were allowed to continue after they showed their official Fiesta badges. 
The abusive actions undertaken and the gross misconduct by LPOA, MPD and Mexican Fiesta has no doubt led to claims of civil rights violations ever witnessed in public or at a public grounds in nature as Summerfest, which the grounds are owned by the City of Milwaukee. 
Ayala says, the policy in the back of the ticket authorized him and Mexican Fiesta to refuse admittance or kick anyone out. For no reason?
Many can agree with Ayala and Fiesta, but they better make sure that they have just cause to do so, simply because the U.S. Constitution or the protections afforded by the Civil Rights Act don't stay outside the festival grounds. The fundamental rights of people and especially, the undesirables are exclusive and has no limits or boundaries in the U.S., according to the founding fathers. 
Some members of the Latino community have become outraged by the use of police to violate the rights of people at Mexican Fiesta. As more people in the Latino community learn of what happened at Fiesta, they don't agree with the festival's discriminatory policy.
Numerous postings in Facebook (FB) are calling of a boycott of Mexican Fiesta in 2014. Others in FB posted, they will boycott the fiesta until a public apology is given for what Officer Ayala and MPD did. 
But, it should go further than that, Ayala should be removed from Mexican Fiesta, including those who authorized him or appoved the use of such a discriminatory policy. 
An independent internal investigation should be conducted to determine,  if the officers involved violated department policy. Also, all those officers who engaged in alleged illegal acts should be fired from the department. Were the officers that ignorant that they didn't know they were actually violating people's rights and stood by or even engaged in the acts?
Well Mayor Tom Barrett, the Milwaukee Common Council, Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn and the Fire and Police Commission have a lot of explaining to do for their lack of action in making sure people's rights were not being violated since, the policy or police action was implemented at Mexican Fiesta in 2010.
If Police Chief Flynn authorized IT to be use to illegally profile people as gang members even thought they were not, he should step down as chief. The use of IT at a festival for the purpose of kicking people out without any just cause or even the fact that the victims didn't commit an illegal act is unwarranted. 
One thing for sure, both the Mexican Fiesta and MPD have been identified with a four letter word for their policy to profile or identify, "F..K Mexican Fiesta and Milwaukee Police," according to postings going viral on Facebook and in the Hispanic community.
When police lose the respect of the community it has sworn to serve and protect, the department is viewed as corrupt and it's time to clean house!
Milwaukee should not be surprised, if t-shirts expressing what is going viral on FB, "F..K Mexican Fiesta and Milwaukee Police" does become the current style to freely express dissatisfaction with MPD and Mexican Fiesta.
A sad day for all those honest, dedicated and hard working police officers to endure and brought about by what the community is labeling as a few bad cops and a discriminatory festival policy.


The current Wisconsin Hispanic Scholarship Foundation, Inc. (WHSF) Board of Directors who operate the annual Mexican Fiesta are;

● Antonio Guajardo Jr. (President)
● Gregorio Montoto (1st Vice President)
● Ricardo Ruiz (2nd Vice President)
● Arturo Martinez (Secretary)
● Ernesto Baca (Treasurer)
● Teresa Mercado (Executive Director)
● Ray Bacalzo
● Frank Gonzales
● Woody Welch
● Marjorie Cervera
● Oscar Cervera
● Julio Maldonado
● Luis Gonzalez
● Julio Guix
● Lupe Martinez
● Ruben Burgos
● Jason Hyland
● Diana Moreno
● Asael Ruiz
● Darryl Morin

These Board members can be contacted for information regarding Mexican Fiesta 2013 or WHSF.

Milwaukee Police profiling at Mexican Fiesta 2013? (Telemundo 63 news video at) http://bit.ly/17mNzCt

1 comment:

David Gutierrez said...

This is some racist bull! Do you mean to tell me that Mexican Fiesta is the only festival in town with gang members and affiliates in attendance? I wonder how hard they will be checking for known biker gang members this weekend at Harley Fest? Mostly white event so my guess would be not very hard if at all! Very sad to see Mexican Fiesta let the MPD and powers that be separate and discriminate against our raza once again!!!