Cesar Chavez, the Farmworker Movement, and the Legacy of Ghandi’s Commitment to Nonviolent Activism

Nathaniel Simpson, Reporter

On Thursday, March 31, 2022, Bakersfield College hosted the last in a series of webinars focused on the Jess Nieto memorial, titled “Cesar Chavez, the Farmworker Movement, and the Legacy of Ghandi’s Commitment to Nonviolent Activism.” The webinar focused around a short film directed by Juan Rodriguez Jr. with BC students helping out with the film.

The short film centered around Chavez’s Farmworker Movement, which helped improve many working conditions for the farm workers during that time. In the film, Rodriguez and the BC students talk to many locals living around the Kern County era about what the Movement meant to them, and how it had changed their lives and the field of work they are in. The film was excellently shot, and it depicted how big of an impact Chavez had on so many people’s lives, and how those effects are still being recognized today.

The film was then followed by a short Q&A, where the members of the webinar had the chance to ask the director and the student collaborators questions about their work on the film. Just from the emotion and the responses that the students and Rodriguez gave, you can tell the subject matter in this film really hit home and meant a lot to them. This wasn’t just an ordinary student film that they threw together for a project; you could see the hard work, the determination, and the meaning it had behind each and every person who worked on the film.

To wrap up the seminar, the hosts played a brief clip of a poem that represented the ideals and the values that were presented in the film. It hinted at some of the hardships that the working class farmers had to endure, as well as the way they overcame those hardships. It was very uplifting and inspiring, especially for those who can relate to the short film or the poem itself.

It was joy to watch those who care and are passionate about what they create. Everyone involved seemed very energetic and excited to talk about the short film and their presentation, which meant a good time for all to be had at this zoom conference.