NUMBERS: Mayra Ortiz, left, a 10th grader from Southeast Learning Center, holds a Mexican flag near the front of a crowd of thousands.
Los Angeles Times: How DJs Put 500,000 Marchers in Motion
He’s one of the hottest Spanish-language radio personalities in the nation. So when Los Angeles deejay Eddie Sotelo joined hands with his radio rivals to urge listeners to turn out for a pro-immigrant rally in downtown Los Angeles on Saturday, organizers hoped for a big turnout.
But many said Monday that they were stunned by how many responded to the call to march against federal legislation that would crack down on undocumented immigrants and penalize those who assist them.
GETTING THE WORD OUT: One of the chief promoters of the rally was DJ Eddie Piolin Sotelo, who is working at Spanish-language KSCA-FM.
The promoters included such on-air celebrities as KHJ’s Humberto Luna, KBUE’s Ricardo “El Mandril” (The Baboon) Sanchez, Renan “El Cucuy” (The Boogeyman) Almendarez Coello â€” whose often risque show has cast him as a sort of Latino version of Howard Stern â€” and Sotelo, better known to listeners as “El Piolin,” or Tweety Bird. Coello’s and Sotelo’s morning talk shows are among the highest-rated programs in any language in Los Angeles.
“They were the key to getting so many people out,” said Mike Garcia, president of Local 1877 of the Service Employees International Union. “If you listened to Spanish-language media, they were just pumping, pumping, pumping this up.”
As the illegal immigration debate continues demonstrations and protests must be civil. The debate is healthy and there are immigration issues that have been for too long ignored by the Congress.
There will be more demonstrations/protests and the Latino media will again play a role.
Meanwhile, Diaz and Rodriguez planned to announce today their next major action: a call to boycott work, school and all consumer activities May 1. They are calling it “The Great American Boycott of 2006.”
FLAGS FLY: Approximately 300 students from several high schools in Oxnard marched to that city’s Plaza Park. According to Oxnard Sgt. Whitney, there were no arrests or injuries.
DESTINATION: Alhambra High School student Joe Olmos, center, waves a Mexican flag on the lawn in front of Los Angeles City Hall. Many walked several miles to reach the demonstration’s final stop.
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