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Excerpted From: Marc-Tizoc González, Critical Ethnic Legal Histories: Unearthing the Interracial Justice of Filipino American Agricultural Labor Organizing, 3 UC Irvine Law Review 991 (December 2013) (268 Footnotes) (Full Document)
1587: Filipinos identified as “Luzon Indios” arrive as part of a Spanish landing party in Morro Bay, California to claim its territory for the Spanish Crown.
1763: Spanish-speaking Filipinos known as “Manilamen” establish a permanent settlement in the Louisiana bayou.
1781: Filipino, Antonio Miranda Rodriguez Poblador, is amongst the group sent from México to establish the town that became Los Angeles.
1896: Filipino Revolution.
1898: Spanish American War. Filipinos celebrate their independence from Spain on June 12, 1898, declaring Emilio Aguinaldo as president. However, the Treaty of Paris, December 10, 1898, 30 Stat. 1754, cedes the Philippines from Spain to the U.S. as a territory in exchange for $20M and classifies Filipinos as “American nationals.”
1899-1902: Philippine American War, a.k.a., the Philippine Insurrection.
1902: Act of July 1, 1902, 32 Stat. 691-92 (declaring “that all inhabitants continuing to reside therein who were Spanish subjects on April 11, 1899, and then resided in the Islands, and their children, and their children born subsequent thereto, 'shall be deemed and held to be citizens of the Philippine Islands and as such entitled to the protection of the United States, except such as shall have elected to preserve their allegiance to the Crown of Spain,’ according to the treaty.” Toyota v. United States, 268 U.S. 402, 411 (1925).
1901: William Howard Taft is appointed Governor-General of the Philippines. The United States begins to establish a public education system in the Philippines.
1903: The first 103 pensionados, scions of elite Filipino families, migrate to the United States to attend university, including State Normal School, now known as San Diego State University. 1904: Gonzales v. Williams, 192 U.S. 1, 7 (1904) (holding that citizens of Porto Rico are not “aliens,” and upon arrival by water at United States ports, are not “alien immigrants” within the intent and meaning of the Immigration Act of March 3, 1891, 26 Stat. 1084). 1906: Act of June 29, 1906, 34 Stat. 601 (requiring immigrants to learn English in order to naturalize and setting various racial prerequisites and exclusions from naturalization). Filipinos first recruited for agricultural peonage by the Hawaiian Sugar Planters Association.
1907: Act of March 2, 1907, ch. 2534, § 3, 34 Stat. 1228 (providing “[t]hat any American woman who marries a foreigner shall take the nationality of her husband”) (upheld in MacKenzie v. Hare, 239 U.S. 299 (1915)).
1909: Filipinos begin immigrating to the United States in significant numbers.
1912: In re Alverto, 198 F. 688 (E.D. Pa. 1912) (first federal case holding Filipinos are racially ineligible for United States citizenship, where the applicant was “one-fourth of the white or Caucasian race and three-fourths of the brown or Malay race”).
1916: In re Lapitoe, 232 F. 382 (S.D.N.Y. 1916); In re Mallari, 239 F. 416 (D. Mass. 1916); In re Rallos, 241 F. 686 (E.D.N.Y. 1917) (all holding that Filipinos are not white).
1918: Act of May 9, 1918, 40 Stat. 542 (authorizing the naturalization of native-born Filipino servicemen, as held in Toyota v. United States, supra). 1920: Approximately 3300 Filipinos reside in California. 1922: Act of September 22, 1922, ch. 411, § 3, 42 Stat. 1021 (providing “that [a]ny woman citizen who marries an alien ineligible to citizenship shall cease to be a citizen of the United States”).
Mid-1920s: More than 4000 Filipinos per year are arriving in California from Hawai?i or the Philippines.
1925: Toyota v. United States, 268 U.S. 402 (1925) (interpreting federal laws providing for the naturalization of Filipino-born service men, who are not aliens, and who owe their allegiance, to the United States, in order to revoke the naturalization of an honorably discharged ten-year Coast Guard veteran who was Japanese-born).
1927: United States v. Javier, 22 F.2d 879 (D.C. Cir. 1927) (affirming that Filipinos are not White).
1929: Reacting to Filipino labor competition and fraternization with White women, a mob of 300 White men riot against Filipinos in Exeter, California, driving them out of town.
1930: Approximately 30,000 Filipinos reside in California, representing a labor force of about 25,000 single men who are concentrated in the San Joaquin and Salinas valleys as the base labor force in asparagus, lettuce, grapes, and truck crops. After Filipinos lease a property in Watsonville, California to run their own taxi dance hall, the Northern Monterey Chamber of Commerce adopts anti-Filipino resolutions, and when the Filipinos persist, a mob of up to 500 White men riots over several days, beating, burning, and killing Filipino men.
1930s: “Voluntary” repatriation campaigns target Filipinos (and Mexicans).
1931: Act of March 3, 1931, ch. 442, §4(a), 46 Stat. 1511 (repealing women's expatriation upon marriage to an alien ineligible to citizenship).
1933: Roldan v. Los Angeles County, 129 Cal. App. 267 (1933) (affirming that Filipinos are entitled to obtain a marriage license to wed a woman of Caucasian descent because the 1880 and 1905 state legislatures did not mean to include Filipinos in the antimiscegenation law excluding “Mongolians,” since Filipinos at that time were commonly understood to be of the “Malay” race).
1934: Philippine Independence Act, Pub. L. No. 73-127, 48 Stat. 456 (1934), a.k.a., the Tydings-McDuffie Act (changing Filipino status from American nationals to aliens ineligible for citizenship, setting an annual maximum quota of fifty Filipino immigrants, and establishing the principle for Philippine independence after a ten-year probationary period).
1935: De La Ysla v. United States, 77 F.2d 988 (9th Cir. 1935) (affirming that Filipinos are not White).
1941: DeCano v. State, 110 P.2d 627 (Wash. 1941) (affirming that Filipinos are not White).
1942: New waves of Mexican workers are recruited to the United States under the Mexican Farm Labor Program, a.k.a. the bracero program. Over 100,000 Filipinos join the United States Army for World War II; approximately 22,000 of the 75,000 survivors live in the continental United States as of 2007, with many having immigrated after the Immigration Act of 1990, which granted them citizenship. 1946: Racial exclusion of Filipinas/os from naturalization ends with the Act of July 2, 1946, ch. 534, 60 Stat. 416. Philippine Independence declared July 4, 1946. The United States enters into a provisional agreement with the Philippines to sever political ties between the two nations on July 4, 1946. 60 Stat. 1352 (1946) (codified as amended at 22 U.S.C. § 1394 (2006)). The United States relinquishes all possession, supervision, jurisdiction, control, or sovereignty over the Philippines. Proclamation No. 2695, 11 Fed. Reg. 7517 (July 9, 1946). Congress passes the Rescission Act of 1946, Pub. L. 70-301 (codified as amended at 38 U.S.C. § 107 (2006)), which revokes the full eligibility for veterans rights of the 250,000 Filipino soldiers, whom the United States had recruited with promises of treatment as United States veterans with full benefits.
1948: In the first major agricultural workers strike after World War II, around 3600 Filipino workers, organized by the Cannery Workers Union, ILWU Local 37 (led by Chris Mensalvas and Ernesto Mangaoang), strike the asparagus fields around Stockton, California.
1950: Growers in Salinas, California recruit unemployed Filipina/o American farm laborers from Hawai?i through labor contractors, starting with 300 in May 1950, and with plans for 3000-5000 in the coming year. Within a month, the Filipina/o American workers declare a work stoppage over low earnings, arbitrary changes to their contracts, growers' impounding of their documents, and poor housing conditions. Many are returned to Hawai?i.
1951: “Public Law 78,” Pub. L. 82-78, 65 Stat. 119 (July 12, 1951), amended the Agricultural Act of 1949 to formalize the importation of Mexican workers under prior bracero programs. 1953: Supreme Court denied certiorari in Boyd v. Mangaoang, 346 U.S. 746 (1953), thus leaving undisturbed the ruling in Mangaoang v. Boyd, 205 F.2d 553 (9th Cir. 1953), that the Internal Security Act of 1950 should be narrowly construed so as not to apply to an American national, Ernesto Mangaoang, who was a member of the Communist Party before Philippine Independence, where such individual had migrated from the Philippines to the mainland United States in 1926 and thereafter resided continuously within United States territory. 1956: Under Public Law 414, 66 Stat. 163 (1952), California growers obtain an immigration quota of up to 1000 Filipino workers directly from the Philippines, which lasts through 1960 although the full quota is never recruited. 1959: The AFL-CIO forms the Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee (AWOC). 1962: The National Farm Workers Association (NFWA) forms under the leadership of César Chávez, Dolores Huerta, Gilbert Padilla, and other Mexican American farm labor organizers and allies. 1964: Public Law 78 lapses in December 1964, ending the massive importation of Mexican agricultural workers. 1965: The Immigration Act of 1965, Pub. L. No. 89-236, 79 Stat. 911, permits up to 20,000 Filipino immigrants annually. September 8, 1965, AWOC strikes against grape growers in Delano, California, with Di Giorgio as its main target, following a spring 1965 Coachella Valley victory, wherein after a ten day walkout Filipino and Mexican workers received wage parity with the braceros, whom the United States Department of Labor recently had announced would be paid $1.40/hour or $0.25/box. September 16, the NFWA votes to join the strike. 1966: AWOC and NFWA merge to constitute the United Farm Workers Organizing Committee (UFWOC), with César Chávez as executive director, Larry Itliong as associate director, and an executive board including, inter alia, Dolores Huerta, Andy Imutan, Gilbert Padilla, Pete Velasco, and Philip Vera Cruz. Peregrinación (pilgrimage) from Delano to Sacramento. El Plan de Delano. Grape boycott expands nationally. Reportedly the first farmworker collective bargaining agreement with a grower, Schenley Vineyards, is achieved in United States history. 1960s: Urban renewal targets Manilatown, San Francisco. 1968: First eviction notices go to the manongs, elderly Filipino men, residing at the International Hotel in San Francisco. César Chávez enacts a twenty-five-day fast, ending it in the presence of Senator Robert Kennedy and 8000 farmworkers. 1970: UFWOC wins the national boycott of Delano grape growers, which sign five-year union contracts.
1971: Larry Itliong and Andy Imutan resign from the UFWOC's executive board.
1972: Implementation of hard affirmative action at Berkeley Law and other California law schools. Formation of the Asian Law Caucus in Oakland, California. The UFWOC evolves into the UFW. Ferdinand Marcos declares martial law in the Philippines.
1973: Filipinos for Affirmative Action, later renamed Filipino Advocates for Justice, established.
1974: Benjamin Menor becomes the first Filipino American appointed to a state supreme court, becoming an associate justice of the Supreme Court of Hawai?i.
1975: Formation of Nihonmachi Legal Outreach in Oakland, later renamed Asian Pacific Islander Legal Outreach (API Legal Outreach). California Agricultural Labor Relations Act enacted.
1977: Despite sustained community struggle, the elderly manongs are evicted from the International Hotel, San Francisco. UFW delegation to the Philippines. Philip Vera Cruz resigns in protest. 1978: The International Hotel is demolished without a city permit by the Four Seas Investment Corporation. 1986: Lillian Ygna Lim becomes the first Filipina judge in the United States, appointed by California Governor George Deukmejian to the San Diego Municipal Court. In 1998, she is elevated to the San Diego County Superior Court. 1989: Fragrante v. City of Honolulu, 888 F.2d 591 (9th Cir. 1989) (affirming the dismissal of a complaint of national origin discrimination where the job applicant had “deficiencies in the area of oral communication,” viz., a thick Filipino accent). Wards Cove Packing Co. v. Atonio, 490 U.S. 642, 658 (1989) (reversing and remanding for Seattle-based Filipina/o American and Alaskan Native cannery worker plaintiffs to demonstrate that “specific elements of the petitioners' hiring process have a significantly disparate impact on nonwhites,” and holding that statistically significant racial disparities in one segment of a work force is insufficient to establish a prima facie case of disparate impact). 1990: Immigration Act of 1990, Pub. L. No. 101-649, 104 Stat. 4978 (granting Filipino World War II veterans United States citizenship). 1991: Dimaranan v. Pomona Valley Hosp. Med. Ctr., 775 F. Supp. 338 (C.D. Cal. 1991) (finding a restriction on the use of Tagalog was not the result of racial animus and hence the employer's language restriction did not violate Title VII under intentional discrimination on the basis of national origin though also finding that the plaintiff Filipina nurse did suffer unlawful retaliation under Title VII). Emma Salazar Case (Regal Films, Jose Javier Reyes, dir. 1991). 1994: Ben Cayetano is elected as governor of Hawai?i. Tess Santiago is elected as mayor of Delano, California. Manilatown Heritage Foundation established in San Francisco.
1998: Miller v. Albright, 523 U.S. 420 (1998) (affirming gender discrimination in the differential application of laws governing the acquisition of citizenship at birth by children born out of wedlock and outside of the United States, with different rules applying contingent on whether the father or mother is a United States citizen, to deny a Filipina United States citizenship where her serviceman father did not legitimate her before age eighteen, even though he supported her application and joined her lawsuit for declaration of United States citizenship).
2000: United States census reports that Filipinos are the second largest Asian American population at 1,850,314. Congress passes a law permitting Filipino World War II veterans to be buried in United States military cemeteries.
2009: President Obama signs the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, Pub. L. No. 111-5, 123 Stat. 115 (2009), which grants benefits for the almost 18,000 surviving Filipino veterans of World War II, who served as American nationals of the Philippine Commonwealth, being a one-time payment of $9,000 for such veterans living in the Philippines and $15,000 for those living in the United States.
2010: United States census shows Filipinos are the second largest Asian group at 3.2 million, and over 1 million people in the United States speak Tagalog at home. Carson City, California proclaims the first Larry Itliong Day on October 25.
2011: Chief Justice Tani Gorre Cantil-Sakauye sworn into office as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of California on January 3, 2011.
2012: Rob Bonta becomes the first Filipina/o American elected to the California Assembly, representing District 18 (Oakland, Alameda, and San Leandro).
2013: Assembly Member Bonta introduces AB 123, which Governor Brown signs into law on October 2, 2013.
2014: Cesar Chavez (Canana Films forthcoming Mar. 2014) to premier. Delano Manongs: Forgotten Heroes of the United Farm Workers (Media Factory forthcoming Mar. 2014) to premier.
Associate Professor of Law, St. Thomas University School of Law.
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