“I think it did, you know. Certainly in the places where we want, where we took control, very much so. Streets got paved, sidewalks got built, lights, parks, houses, uh, we turned around the push out rate. You know, instead of 60 percent of the kids being pushed out of school, we had 91 percent goin- graduating and going to college. All kinds of indices, we created a middle class because now they got jobs, and they were government jobs, so they had pensions, and they had benefits and so on. I think it was very dramatic. And since it was at the local level, you can see it.”
The real change in the Chicano Movement came with the subtle improvements that can be physically seen, but are often overlooked or taken for granted. Bad roads, poor schools, low-paying jobs, bad housing conditions among many, many others have been improved, slowly, through members of the community being active. Choosing to get out and do something about the conditions in which they lived, the community reached out, banded together, organized, and participated. They fought to change their lives for the better.
“A lot of people say they went strong in the movement and that now they do nothing and their children, like the parents of the.. of State Representative Castro and Mayor Julián Castro of San Antonio, the twins, who were educated in Stanford, their parents were very active in the movement but they are now, not, especially the mother, but they are not that active. What I think what happened to us now, is that we are very active in our community. I am active in the community by ways of leading Latinas, getting them educated.” – Eva Bonilla
Even after all the work that has been done, there is and always will be more to do. Looking to the future, chasing education, and being active in the community are all ways that members of the community can help now.