In the end, an interesting spectrum of students was missing from my class. Not all were the students I know whose parents are "without papers" and not all were among the bottom strata of my class. I could not, in fact, have predicated which parents were going to send and which were going to hold their kids.
I was intending to make a post stating my disagreement with the idea of withholding students from their own education as a method of political statement, but I'm going to hold off on that until tomorrow. We've pushed our testing back a day (Imagine that!) and I'm going to use the morning to hear from the kids about why they took the day off. Perhaps they can convince me it was better than a day of school. I'm open to the idea, movements are powerful stuff.
Following the school day, I marched with many thousands of others from the East Side of San Jose to downtown. There we... turned around and went home, much to my surprise. I had come prepared for a few speeches, for some organization, for some translation of the massive presence into continuing action. None was to be found. Perhaps the rallying was done before the march, when I was still in school.
Much as I take this one-day "boycott" to be, the march was much more of a demonstration of numbers than a rally to action. Rather than organizing and initiating a concerted campaign until a desired goal was achieved, like the Montgomery Bus Boycott, this seemed to be simply reminder of the massive presence and pride of the immigrant community.
I am still glad to have been a part of the march, but I fear much more lengthy and economically painful action would be necessary for the native majority to begin to appreciate the vital contributions of immigrant America.