April 3 - Day 4 of NACCS Elections
I am dumbstruck by the conference’s theme of civility and its relationship to the organization’s election. To put it mildly, in its purported quest for, or in the name of, diversity, the National Association for Chicana and Chicano Studies has ironically become not simply undemocratic, but uncivil toward its own membership as well. The organization has devolved to the point where candidates for the highest office(s) run unopposed. By any measure anywhere, that is not the definition, nor the hallmark of, free, fair, democratic and competitive elections. Advancing but one candidate for an election is the anti-thesis of this definition, and this is part of an intentional policy that crept into the organization’s culture over the past several years. This is especially poignant, considering that in my case, I have been nominated, but deemed to be ineligible to run for chair-elect not once, but several times, based on reasons outside of the by-laws. This is referred to as receiving “una gran patada.” Remanding me to the status of an invisible write-in candidate is folly or farce, at best. But that’s not all folks.
A second critical feature that points to the undemocratic nature of the organization is the intentional disenfranchisement of much of the membership. The cut-off date for voter eligibility was March 22. I was given the green light for a write-in candidacy on March 29. I asked the NACCS board and leadership to permit members who pay their dues during the March 31-April 14 period to be eligible to vote. I sent in that request on March 31. On April 2, I received a message from the chair, declining my request, without explanation. This creates the opposite of optimum conditions for competitive elections. Perhaps when candidates were running unopposed in the past, maybe this didn’t matter, but it does matter when the elections are competitive.
A third critical feature of a democratic election is clarity and transparency. Members have been asking the board about the above, but to no avail, receiving thank yous… but no actual explanations. On top of this, all information regarding the election was taken down March 31 and it has not gone back up. They have not explained the reason for this. My own opinion is that eliminating choices and disqualifying candidates for reasons outside the by-laws… well you can draw your own conclusions.
Please continue to write to them and ask them to respond to the questions raised here, or any question you may have by posting to the NACCS FB page at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/naccs/
The minimum that should be expected is that the board respond publicly to letters from the membership on its official website or its FB page,
The letters I have posted, including this one, which includes NACCS contact info, can be found on their FB page and also at my page: (http://drcintli.blogspot.com/). Feel free to contact me if you have questions though best is to post them at the NACCS FB Page.
I do believe the era of the DEMOCRATIZATION of the National Association for Chicana and Chicano Studies has begun.
Thanks and Sincerely
Roberto Rodriguez (Dr. Cintli)
Roberto Rodriguez (Dr. Cintli)