AUSTIN (KXAN) — A Latino-focused “banned book caravan” arrived in Austin on Friday as part of a three-city day trip.
The demonstration, organized by the group Librotraficante (or “book traffickers” in English) was to start in Houston before traveling to San Antonio, then ending in Austin with a march to the Texas state capital.
The trailer comes in response to schools in Texas pulling books from library shelves deemed inappropriate by Republican lawmakers, some of which are written by Latino authors.
Organizers said they will have donated copies of banned books to distribute at the event.
The group also calls for the implementation of Mexican American and Ethnic Studies in classrooms.
“Elected officials must make our art, history and culture more accessible to our community – not less,” said Librotraficante founder Tony Diaz.
Dr. Richard Pineda, a communications professor at the University of Texas at El Paso, told KXAN that if Friday’s protesters achieve their goals, the debate itself matters.
“The fact that we have arguments about what should be done is actually a good sign because I think it ultimately leads us to a conversation about the pros and cons of how we teach history” , did he declare.
Library materials and school curriculum topics are part of the interim fee for state lawmakers ahead of next January’s legislative session.