I live in sight of Tucson Unified School District's ground zero, and this controversy is a storm in a teacup (HCN, 4/16/12, "The book smugglers"). Tucson is a multi-ethnic community, but this controversy seems to have only two cultural dimensions, Latinos and everybody else, with "everybody else" wearing the bad, black cowboy hat these days. There seems to be no place for another point of view.
To make matters worse, the behavior of the Tucson Unified School District (TUSD) students, their parents and other supporters, has been irresponsible. Consider this: Instead of making their case to those of us whose sometimes-outrageous property taxes support TUSD, they disrupted meetings, chaining themselves to furniture at TUSD headquarters, chanting and lobbing verbal bombs. I believe the last disruption featured a smoke bomb. Vandalism followed at least the first disruption, all of it lovingly covered by the media. The results? A public-relations fail. Who taught these kids that destructive behavior would achieve their objective? The mess made TUSD's powers-that-be more determined to eliminate the program.
So, before y'all go all Pancho Villa-vive-la-revolution (yeah, I know, that's French), you might want to dig a little deeper.