The National Council of La Raza announced that it will change its name to UnidosUs, AP reports.
President Janet Murguia described “La Raza” as an outdated term that did not resonate with its members. AP exclusively translates “Raza” as “the people” in its report. However, the term can also be interpreted as “the race,” which carries a suggestion of zero-sum ethnic conflict. According to the AP:
Literally translated, “raza” means “race,” but that is not the definition of the word. The term for “the people” was coined to describe the various races Mexican people come from. Chicano civil rights activists popularized it in the 1960s and 1970s and it’s faced backlash today.
The new term translates to “United us,” or “United States United.”
Murguia claimed the name change was not in response to conservative criticism but said it is intended to mobilize the Latino community in response to perceived anti-Latino racism from the administration.
“I think this is viewed as an opportunity and we see it as an opportunity to strengthen our organization, broaden our reach and expand our growth … And that’s going to be important as we see the challenges that we’re facing at this particular time,” she told AP.