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New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung (Newspaper) - May 5, 1996, New Braunfels, Texas Herald2eltunaO Sunday May St Many wonder why MexicanAmericans continue to celebrate Cinco deMayo It is not an American hol iday W is the fiesta so important to Mexican Americas north of the border Why is it celebrated throughput the United States One must understand the reasons to truly appreciate Cinco de Mayo To MexicanAmericans the holiday is more than a cel ebration of Mexicos liberty against oppression It is a celebration of the human spirit La Batalla the battle of Cinco de Mayo was a defi ance It was a rebellion against an invader It was a battle sprinkled With American ideologies The moti vation behind the battle was liberty freedom against oppression human rights and a fight for the right to govern their own country Sounds familiar doestft it The battle actually started 50 years prior to May 5 1862 During this time Mexico struggled to change its status from colony to country There was a con stant seesaw between liberals and conservatives The ideological heirs of Hidalgo and Morelos on one side the landowners clergy and aristocracy on the other The most prominent of the liberal figures to emerge and one of the most revered men in Mex ican history Was Benito Juarez the Abe Lincoln of Juarez took over the administration of a country that was on the verge of ruin and bankrupt cy The 1810 Revolution and subsequent infighting had left the Mexicans dependent on European sup port Of the three only Francesaw a chance at advancing financially and politically in the Americ as Napoleon III then sent Prince Maximiliano to Mexico to take over the country As president of Mexico Juarez gave heart to the people He dedicated himself to the defense of the country calling on all Mexicans to forget any dif ference of opinion and unite in a common defense earned their place in history at il As soon as Juarez heard the French wew marching to take Mexico city he summoned Texasbom Ignacio Zaragoza bom in Seguin to drive the French army back to the coast Gen Zaragoza prepared for a suicide mission His army consisted of Mexican men women and children who were illequipped and lacked the military training to defeat one of the greatest armies of the world at that time The Mexi can soldiers and solderas women soldiers were armed with sticks stones pitch forks machetes and a few boxes of donated rifles used in the American revolution Neverthe less Zaragoza marched the Mexican force into the hills of Guadalupe and Loreto in PueWa a few miles away from Mexico City The Mexi cans though poorly equipped had the advantage of a more strategic position They hid in the hills where the view was good At noon on May 5 the battle began Within a few hours 500 French soldiers were wounded or killed Twice the French retreated and the third time surrendered The Mexi cans had won Cinco de Mayo became a date that sig naled the end of foreign intervention in the Americ as The victory was a turning point for stable Mexi can Independence The battle captured the enthusiasm of the entire nation No Mexican whatever his party or beliefs was downcast by the tremendous victory against such odds The remotest Indian village felt the electrifying current of this triumph which helped Crlstlna Agullar Frlar unite Mexico in a patriotism seldom seen before This allegiance among the Mexican people spread like lightening awakening a sleeping conscience inspiring the people to make the supreme effort to finally become a nation in the eyes of Odd and the world Mexico had earned its place in history For MexicanAmericas so many miles away so many years aWy so many generations past we cel ebrate it as an echo of who we are The Mexican American is an extension of this history and as such a present living expression of the spirit of the combatants of the hills of Guadalupe y Loreto where the battle began We are caught between two poles that try to make of us what we are not Neither pocho Mexican who forgot his roots or wet we are Americans by politics and Hispanic by culture and our battle is to maintain and enrich our selves and those around us There is heroism in the history of the battle and there is a perseverance in the way we celebrate it north of the heroism is what the MexicanAmerican has inherited It is a heroism we display as soldiers as politicians educators professionals community activists and volunteers Our battle is our dance and our folk tales and our music and our politics and our drama and our unique and beautiful blend of Spanish and English Our courage is in our families in our past and in our hope And our yearning is for a better maana Cinco de Mayo is a day that has come to sig nify the principles of our continent Why do we cel ebrate Cinco de Mayo Because on this day people from both sides of the border raise their glasses in a toast to freedom and the inconquerable pre serverance of the human spirit Cristina AguilarFriar is GHCC chair ofcultur al awareness and international Drinking Water Week On hand to receive a County Court practamitfdri nam ing May 511 as Drinking Water Week art from left County Judge Carter Casteel and All Wright Water of Texas Tommy Webb sales Don Knox Corporate Development and Pat Lynch ter ritorial Bl Texas Today Dought effects evident HOUSTON AP In a normal year cattle ranchers would be starting to cut hay as wheat harvesting crews gather at the South Texas starting point of their annual odyssey from Texas to the Dakotas But this year because of the drought there is no wheat in SouthCentral Texas and the grass is only about an inch tall Normally the wheat harvest would begin soon This year insurance adjusters are now estimating the loss es predicting yields of around 1 bushel per acre near Kames City in southcentral Texas where growers normally harvest 55 bushels per acre Christian Coalition Leaders Say They Have Much In Common with Catholics AUSTIN AP Christian Coali tion leaders say Catholics and funda mentalists go together like a horse and carriage If there is to be a marriage between Catholics and fundamentalists though its bound to be a rocky one That is the message Catholic leaders heard at a twoday seminar here that ended Friday The seminar drew some 250 Texas clergy and lay leaders to discuss the inroads of fundamentalism among Catholics SPECIALITY BOUTIQUE O The Guardian9 South Texas Agency Pete Stocking Arjent Life Group Disability Insurance Personal Business Financial Planning 123 N Seguin 7117 New Braunfels TX 11 Youve tried the rest now hire the best Use our PreEmployment Testing FOR MANAQCMENT SUCCESS INC INDIVIDUAL TEAM AND ORGANIZATIONAL DEVELOPMENT 800 W San Antonio St Suite B Off 2106080033 New Braunfels Tx 78130 Fax 2106080036 t ART T SUPPLIES FABRICS CARDS A P Super Selection Super HOME BUYERS OR EXISTING HOMES INTERIM PERMANENT FINANCING REFINANCE REDUCE YOUR MONTHLY PAYMENTS MOST CLOSING COSTS CAN BE FINANCED FOR FREE ANALYSIS WILLIAMS FINANCIAL 6206269 KESLER BOOKKEEPING 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