[United States Statutes at Large, Volume 124, 111th Congress, 2nd Session]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office, www.gpo.gov]

 
PROCLAMATION 8487--MAR. 31, 2010

Proclamation 8487 of March 31, 2010
Cesar Chavez Day, 2010
By the President of the United States of America
A Proclamation

The rights and benefits working Americans enjoy today were not easily
gained; they had to be won. It took generations of courageous men and

[[Page 4600]]

women, fighting to secure decent working conditions, organizing to
demand fair pay, and sometimes risking their lives. Some, like Cesar
Estrada Chavez, made it the cause of their lives. Today, on what would
have been his 83rd birthday, we celebrate Cesar's legacy and the
progress achieved by all who stood alongside him.
Raised by a family of migrant farm workers, Cesar Chavez spent his youth
moving across the American Southwest, working in fields and vineyards,
and experiencing firsthand the hardships he would later crusade to
abolish. At the time, farm workers were deeply impoverished and
frequently exploited, exposed to very hazardous working conditions, and
often denied clean drinking water, toilets, and other basic necessities.
The union Cesar later founded with Dolores Huerta, the United Farm
Workers of America (UFW), still addresses these issues today.
After serving in the United States Navy, Cesar Chavez became a community
organizer and began his lifelong campaign for civil rights and social
justice. Applying the principles of nonviolence, he empowered countless
laborers, building a movement that grew into the UFW. He led workers in
marches, strikes, and boycotts, focusing our Nation's attention on their
plight and using the power of picket lines to win union contracts.
``The love for justice that is in us is not only the best part of our
being, but it is also the most true to our nature,'' Cesar Chavez once
said. Since our Nation's earliest days of independence, we have
struggled to perfect the ideals of equal justice and opportunity
enshrined in our founding documents. As Cesar suggests, justice may be
true to our nature, but as history teaches us, it will not prevail
unless we defend its cause.
Few Americans have led this charge so tirelessly, and for so many, as
Cesar Chavez. To this day, his rallying cry--``S!, se puede,'' or ``Yes,
we can,''--inspires hope and a spirit of possibility in people around
the world. His movement strengthened our country, and his vision lives
on in the organizers and social entrepreneurs who still empower their
neighbors to improve their communities.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of
America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and
the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim March 31, 2010, as
Cesar Chavez Day. I call upon all Americans to observe this day with
appropriate service, community, and education programs to honor Cesar
Chavez's enduring legacy.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirty-first day of
March, in the year of our Lord two thousand ten, and of the Independence
of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-fourth.
BARACK OBAMA