Letter of Support for Mexican Intellectual Edur Velasco Arregui

Please see the following call to action passed along to us by Richard Roman and LAWCHA member Manny Ness.


Dear Colleague,

I am writing to ask you to sign a letter of support for my colleague and co-researcher, Mexican intellectual and trade union activist, Edur Velasco Arregui, who has been expelled for political reasons from the SNI (National System of Researchers) in Mexico. This expulsion has many severe consequences for Edur (financial, job security, and health coverage) and is part of the effort of the Mexican government to intimidate those who oppose by actions as well as words its authoritarian, repressive and neoliberal path.

Edur’s history of opposition to the regime, his academic record, and circumstances surrounding the case are presented in the accompanying attachment, “Political Retaliation against a Mexican Intellectual: The Case of Dr. Edur Velasco Arregui.”

The text of the letter is below. Initial signers of the letter include Noam Chomsky (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Ariel Dorfman (Chilean novelist and playwright, Duke University), José Raúl Vera López (Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Saltillo, Coahuila, Mexico),
Marcel van der Linden ( Research Director, International Institute of Social History, Amsterdam), Leo Panitch (Canada Research Chair in Comparative Political Economy and Distinguished Research Professor of Political Science, York University), Nelson Lichtenstein (MacArthur Foundation Chair in History & Director, Center for the Study of Work, Labor and Democracy, University of California, Santa Barbara), Porfirio Muñoz Ledo (Mexico’s Secretary of Labor from 1972-1975 and Mexico’s UN Ambassador 1978-1985), and Stephanie Ross (President, Canadian Association for Work and Labour Studies). A full list of initial signers is appended to the letter.

Please let me know if you would like to sign the open letter, and provide your institutional affiliation, profession, or other way of identifying yourself as well, if you like. We will indicate that institutions are for identification purposes only. We will present the letter to:

Dra. Julia Tagüeña Parga [ Directora Adjunta de Desarrollo Científico, Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (Deputy Director of Scientific Development, National Council for Science and Technology)]

José Antonio Meade Kuribreña, Secretario de Relaciones Exteriores de Mexico [Mexican Foreign Minister]

You can use the form below, or just send a fresh email to me at [email protected]
Thank you!

Richard Roman, Ph. D.
Associate Professor Emeritus, University of Toronto
Associate Fellow, Centre for the Study of Latin America and the Caribbean, York University
Founding Fellow, Senior College, University of Toronto


____Yes, I would like to sign the open letter

NAME_______________________________

INSTITUTIONAL AFFILIATION (for Identification only)______________________

COMMENT_______________________________________

___Please do NOT publicize my name in print

___Please do NOT publicize my name on the internet

Open Letter to:

Dra. Julia Tagüeña Parga
Directora Adjunta de Desarrollo Científico, Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (Deputy Director of Scientific Development, National Council for Science and Technology)

José Antonio Meade Kuribreña, Secretario de Relaciones Exteriores de Mexico [Mexican Foreign Minister]

We find the decision to remove Dr. Edur Velasco Arregui from the SNI (National System of Researchers) in Mexico deeply troubling on a number of levels. We are alarmed by evidence that political considerations entered into the evaluation of Professor Velasco Arregui’s work, as the quality and quantity of his work is impressive and, as we understand it, well meets and surpasses the requirements for SNI renewal. Dr. Velasco Arregui is well known for his scholarly contributions to the study of the political economy of Mexico and of the Mexican labor movement. He has also made important contributions to the study of North America as a whole, especially of the impact of the North American Free Trade Agreement on unions and workers in Canada, Mexico and the United States. His scholarly contributions are recognized in Latin America, North America and Europe. His interdisciplinary approach, which combines perspectives drawn from the disciplines of Law, History and Economics, has contributed to the original character of his work. We call on you to reverse your decision to deny Dr. Edur Velasco Arregui renewal as a member of the National System of Researchers of Mexico.

SIGNERS OF SUPPORT LETTER FOR DR. EDUR VELASCO ARREGUI

Updated Oct. 28, 2013

Name (Affiliation for Identification only)

Nahla Abdo (Dept. of Sociology and Anthropology, Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada)

Rodolfo F. Acuña (Professor Emeritus, California State University, Northridge)

Greg Albo (Professor, Political Science, York University, co-editor, Socialist Register)

Linda Alkana (California State University, Long Beach)

Guillermo Almeyra (Latin American writer, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Argentina)

Sedef Arat-Koc (Dept. of Politics and Public Administration Ryerson University)

Stanley Aronowitz (Graduate Center, City University of New York)

David Bacon (Independent photojournalist and author)

Abigail B. Bakan (Professor and Chair, Dept. of Humanities, Social Sciences and Social Justice Education, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto)

Elaine Bernard (Executive Director, Labor and Worklife Program, Harvard Law School)

David Camfield (Associate Professor of Labour Studies, University of Manitoba)

Barry Carr (Senior Fellow, Institute of Latin American Studies, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia)

Ronald H. Chilcote (Professor Emeritus of Economics and Political Science, University of California. Riverside, California)

Noam Chomsky (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)

James Cockcroft (Internet professor SUNY, Honorary Editor Latin American Perspectives)

Stephen Diamond (Associate Professor of Law, School of Law, Santa Clara University)

Myrna Cherkoss Donahoe (Professor Emeritus of Interdisciplinary Studies and Labor Studies, California State University, Dominguez Hills, Carson, CA)

Ariel Dorfman (playwright, novelist, poet, journalist; he holds the Walter Hines Page Chair of Literature and Latin American Studies at Duke University.)

Senator Alejandro Encinas (Senator for the state of Mexico in the upper house of the Mexican Congress)

Peter Evans (University of California, Berkeley)

Samuel Farber (Professor Emeritus, Department of Political Science, Brooklyn College of CUNY)

Susan Ferguson (Coordinator, Journalism Program, Wilfred Laurier University)

David Finkel (managing editor of Against the Current)

Sam Gindin (former chief economist and assistant to the President, Canadian Auto Workers union [CAW])

Alfonso Gonzales (Department of Political Science, Lehman College, City University of New York)

Gilbert Gonzalez (Professor Emeritus, Chicano Latino Studies, University of California, Irvine)

Van Gosse (Associate Chair, Department of History, Franklin & Marshall College, Lancaster PA)

Ricardo Grinspun (Associate Professor, Department of Economics, York University)

Michael M. Hall ((Universidade Estadual de Campinas, Brazil)

Thomas Harrison (The Brearley School)

Teresa Healy (Adjunct Research Professor at Institute of Political Economy, Carleton University)

Judy Hellman (Professor of Political and Social Science, York University)

Stephen Hellman (Professor of Political Science, York University)

Wythe Holt (University Research Professor of Law Emeritus, University of Alabama School of Law)

Robin D. G. Kelley (Gary B. Nash Professor of U.S. History, University of California at Los Angeles)

Howard Kling (Director, Labor Education Service Telecommunications Project, University of Minnesota & Secretary, International Labor Communications Association, AFL-CIO, CLC, CTW)

Mustafa Koc (Ryerson University)

Kathryn Kopinak (Professor Emerita, Department of Sociology, King’s University College at Western University, Senior Fellow, Center for Comparative Immigration Studies, University of California San Diego, and Guest Scholar, Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies, UCSD.

Dan La Botz (editor of Mexican Labor News and Analysis)

Joanne Landy (MPH, Co-Director, Campaign for Peace and Democracy, New York City)

Jesse Lemisch (John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York)

Nelson Lichtenstein (MacArthur Foundation Chair in History and Director, Center for the Study of Work, Labor and Democracy, University of California, Santa Barbara)

Ignacio Llovet (Universidad Nacional de Lujan, Argentina)

Stephanie Luce (Associate Professor, Murphy Institute, City University of New York)

Moshé Machover (Professor Emeritus, VPP, CPNSS, London School of Economics)

Thomas Marois (Senior Lecturer, Department of Development Studies, SOAS, University of London)

J.J. McMurtry (Graduate Program Director, Social and Political Thought & Associate Professor, Business and Society Program York University)

Teresa A. Meade (Florence B. Sherwood Professor of History and Culture, Union College, Schenectady, NY)

David McNally (Professor of Political Science, York University, Toronto)

Kevin Middlebrook (Institute for the Study of the Americas, University College London, United Kingdom)

Colin Mooers, (Department of Politics and Public Administration, Ryerson University)

His Excellency Porfirio Muñoz Ledo (Mexico’s UN Ambassador from 1978- 1985 and Mexico’s Secretary of Labor from 1972-1975)

Miguel Murmis ( Dr.Honoris Causa, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Retired Researcher, Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones, Argentina)

Immanuel Ness (Brooklyn College, City University of NY)

José Nun (President of the Fundación de Altos Estudios Sociales, Argentina)

Gilda L. Ochoa (Professor of Chicana/o-Latina/o Studies and Sociology, Pomona College)

Enrique C. Ochoa (Professor of Latin American Studies and History, California State University, Los Angeles)

Leo Panitch (Canada Research Chair in Comparative Political Economy and Distinguished Research Professor of Political Science, York University)

Viviana Patroni (Associate Professor, International Development Studies and former Director of the Centre for Research on Latin America and the Caribbean, York University)

Peter Rachleff (Professor of History, Macalester College, Saint Paul, Minnesota)

Judy Rebick (former President of the National Action Committee on the Status of Women; writer and radio and TV commentator, Toronto)Gaspar Rivera-Salgado (UCLA Labor Center)

Chris Roberts (Senior Researcher, Canadian Labour Congress)

Ian Robinson (Lecturer and Research Scientist, Department of Sociology, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor)

David Roediger (Kendrick C. Babcock Professor of History, University of Illinois)

Herman Rosenfeld (Retired Canadian Auto Workers National Representative, Education Department)

Dr. Stephanie Ross (President, Canadian Association for Work and Labour Studies)

Chris Schenk (Centre for Industrial Relations and Human Resources, University of Toronto and former Research Director, Ontario Federation of Labour)

Katherine Sciacchitano (Professor, National Labor College, Washington, D.C.)

Nicola Short (York University)

Pete Sigal (Director of Graduate Studies, Department of History, Duke University and Senior Editor, with Jocelyn Olcott and John D. French, Hispanic American Historical Review)

Edward Silva (Professor Emeritus, University of Toronto)

António Simões do Paço (Executive editor, Workers of the World – International Journal on Strikes and Social Conflicts & Researcher in Contemporary History at the IHC (Instituto de História Contemporânea), Universidade Nova de Lisboa)

John Simoulidus (York University)

Jack Stuart (California State University, Long Beach)

Lillian Taiz, (President of the California Faculty Association)

Ernest Tate (Toronto)

Miguel Tinker Salas (Professor, History Pomona College)

Patricia Tomic (University of British Columbia Okanagan)

Ricardo Trumper (Sociology,_University of British Columbia, Okanagan)

Steven Tufts (Geography, York University)

Marcel van der Linden (Research Director, International Institute of Social History, Amsterdam)

Raquel Varela (Instituto de História Contemporânea, Universidade Nova de Lisboa & Honorary Fellow IISH [Amsterdam])

Patricio Véjar Mercado (Coordinador, Comunidad Martin Luther King, Movimiento Generación 80 (G80), Chile)

His Excellency José Raúl Vera López(Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Saltillo, Coahuila, Mexico and human rights activist

Leandro Vergara-Camus (Lecturer, Department of Development Studies, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London)

Marcelo Vieta (Social Economy Centre, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto)

Immanuel Wallerstein (Yale University and former President of the International Sociological Association)

Mel Watkins (Professor Emeritus of Economics and Political Science, University of Toronto)

Jeffery R. Webber (Senior Lecturer, School of Politics and International Relations, Queen Mary, University of London)

Don Wells (Professor, School of Labour Studies and Department of Political Science, McMaster University)

Michael D. Yates (Professor Emeritus-Economics, University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown,

Adjunct Professor, University of Massachusetts-Amherst, Director of Monthly Review Press)

Anna Zalik (Associate Professor, Faculty of Environmental Studies, York University)