California School District Bans Mexican Epithets for Indigenous People

“No me llames oaxaquita,” or “Don’t call me little Oaxacan,” is the title of an anti-bullying campaign that Oxnard School District in southern California Ventura County, has adopted to encourage tolerance.

Indigenous Mexicans, most of whom are Mixtec and from the states of Oaxaca and Guerrero, reports the Los Angeles Times, make up some 30 percent of California’s farmworkers. Many speak little to no Spanish and are subject to ridicule from other Mexicans.

“One of the main themes is the discrimination, bullying, teasing and verbal abuse that they receive from other Mexican immigrant classmates who are not indigenous,” William Perez, professor of education at Claremont Graduate University told the Los Angeles Times.

The goal of the campaign—created by the Mixteco/Indigena Community Organizing Project—is to prohibit the use of the words “Oaxaquita” and “indito” (little Indian) from being used on school property, reported the Los Angeles Times. The campaign will also form committees to combat bullying and encourage lessons about indigenous Mexican culture and history.

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