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Hundreds of people gathered at our state’s capitol Thursday night to celebrate Mexico’s Independence Day.
Voices rang proud and flags swayed high, as both the American and the Mexican national anthems were sung in tribute to the mixture of these heritages. Americans of all cultural backgrounds stood in solidarity, reveling in the significance of this day, when, 201 years ago, Mexico waged war against Spanish rule and tyranny.
Still for many, the festivities were more than just remembering what happened two centuries ago, or eating too much of the amazing food provided by Sacramento’s mobile food trucks. Instead, they represented the struggle of Mexican Americans here in the United States in becoming an important and recognized ingredient in America’s melting pot.
As people listened to their favorite ranchera and banda music, wore their craziest or most authentic Mexican outfit, and cried out “Viva México, y Viva los Estados Unidos” (Long live Mexico, and long live the United States), cheers of gratitude and pride echoed everywhere for the great struggle of our ancestors, who fought for equality in this country.
Having the opportunity to celebrate who we are on the steps of California’s great capitol, made the Mexican American struggle and its successes that much more real for all of us there.