¡Viva Radio!

El Break proves there's more to Spanish-language radio than ranchero music

He mentions the possibility of El Break doing something similar.

"You guys have fun," Sandoval says, only half-joking.

Avila lets the idea rest for the night, but he's clearly still thinking about it, and, a few days later, El Break's biggest social awareness campaign — Paro Juvenile (Youth Strike) is born.

Luis Avila
Brad Garner
Luis Avila
The members of El Break: From left, Gabby Arias, Laura Suarez, Diali Avila, Obed Hurtado, Sayra Sandoval, Tony Arias, and their leader, Luis Avila.
Brad Garner
The members of El Break: From left, Gabby Arias, Laura Suarez, Diali Avila, Obed Hurtado, Sayra Sandoval, Tony Arias, and their leader, Luis Avila.

A week later, everyone — including Sandoval — has committed to the strike. Starting July 30, they intend to give up food for one full week. This is no sissy sunup to sundown fast, either; it's the real deal. Nothing but water until August 5.

Still, in tune with the way most Americans work, they aren't asking supporters to join them in their total hunger strike. Instead, El Break's tactic to raise awareness is to ask people to give up one thing they truly love, à la Lent.

Radio ads for the strike ask participants to "Join our youth strike and give up something you like in support of the DREAM Act. Don't eat chocolate, don't drink beer, don't go to the movies, don't play Xbox."

Two weeks before the strike begins, Avila, the Arias, Hurtado, Diali, and Suarez head out to University of Phoenix Stadium to pass out fliers and rally support outside the Copa Panamericana soccer tournament.

None of them is sure how they're going to last a week without food. Suarez has been to the doctor, who warned her to be careful.

"As soon as I'm hungry, I'm going to throw up," she says from the backseat of Avila's car.

Gabby is nervous too, but determined.

"It's a challenge. A way to see how powerful I am," she says. "If I can fast for a whole week, I can do anything."

Even Avila, the fearless leader, is worried, though he's also excited. He wishes it was time for the strike and is already wearing the green ribbon they will pass out to supporters during the strike, which ends on the first anniversary of Anaya's death.

El Break is going to set up shop at the hair salon where Avila's mom works, New Imagen, where they will spend the week bringing attention to their strike and to the cause.

Avila is holding Anaya's memory close as he prepares for the fast. He's nervous about going seven days without food, especially because he's in a play on the fourth day of the fast, but when he remembers his mission, he is less concerned.

"Isaac wouldn't have died if he could have gone to school," he says. "It's ironic. He's undocumented and wasn't allowed to go to school and he's buried here in Arizona. Not in Mexico, where they said he should be sent back to."

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6 comments
Bosela
Bosela

Awesome!. Great report. I'm amazed and very glad. Altough i can't listen to the radio show as often as I would like. I LIKE IT VERY MUCH. As a latina I thank you for taking a look at us this way.

anonymous
anonymous

Otra hipocrita fresa que se cree muy gringa, que no mas anda metida en esto para hacerse publicidad, especialmente en este parrafo cuando dice:Sandoval, 20, was born in Mexico City and came to the States at 2. When she was in middle school, her parents divorced and she moved back to Mexico with her mother. After a year and a half in her home country, she found she just could not adjust to the Mexican way of life, so she moved back to America to live with her dad.

Si te has de haber regresado porque de seguro extranabas tus lentes Versace que te apuesto te costaron mitad de lo que ganas, pinches fresas hipocritas si estan tan preocupados por los mexicanos aqui porque no usan su dinero para ayudar a gente que lo necesita en vez de comprar lentes Versace?

anonymous
anonymous

La mera verdad son una bola de puros fresas quejones que estan enojados con Estados Unidos porque quieren venir aqui a crear la separacion que existe en Mexico entre los ricos y pobres, quieren demostrar que ellos si fueron a la universidad y pretenden querer ayudar a los mexicanos que estan aqui infiltrandose en cualquier medio de comunicacion posible, cuando lo que realmente quieren es que los gringos vean que ellos no son jardineros ni carpinteros, quieren los gringos los vean como si fueran Elena Poniatowska o Octavio Paz. Y aparte, estan enojados porque aqui no se les hace tanto borlote como quisieran por ser ninos fresas intelectualones, al contrario, la gente los detesta y los aborrece por ser tan hipocritas y por que se mueren por sus quince minutos de fama cuando ni siquiera tienen talento en ningun campo. Y que mexicano tan mas hipocrita es Luis, especialmente en la parte del articulo cuando dice que despues de regresar a Mexico por estar enojado con la prop 200 y no poder volverse adaptar a la sociedad mexicana, entonces quien chingados crees que eres? Un guero de The OC o que a poco los niveles fresas se te subieron mucho mas alto solo porque aprendiste a hablar ingles y porque sabes pedir un Starbucks? Que bueno que vivas aqui y tengas una identidad perdida, porque Mexico no necesita a hipocritas e idiotas como tu que no saben ni porque estan involucrados en tanto desmadre, hablas por hablar y por hacerte famoso usando causas como la de los ilegales para tu propio beneficio.

Diali
Diali

I am sorry sir, but we DO pay taxes. In clothes, food..etc!. So please inform your self first.

Joe Blow
Joe Blow

Thanks for the enlightening article. It proves that most illegals have no real loyalty to America, or any interest in becoming a bone fide American. They dance around the topic of why they don't want to stay in Mexico. Why is that? I'd like to hear some more specifics about that subject. If they want to protest something or go on hunger strikes, why don't they start by doing it in Mexico City? That's where it's really needed. If more Mexicans stayed put, and worked for change there, to make things better in their home country, I think we'd all be better off, including them. I personally might have a little more sympathy and respect for them if the majority were to do that.

Pietre
Pietre

Dear Protesters:I really do not give a damn about your cause. I came to this country from Poland to work and make a better life for me and my family. You want free education paid with my taxes. If you want to protest do it in your country of origen. You want free education, free healthcare, the whole enchilada...PAY for it!!!

 
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