from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A Mexican laborer permitted to enter the United States and work for a limited period of time, especially in agriculture.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A Mexican national working as an agricultural laborer in the United States from 1942-1964, or similarly a railroad worker from 1942-1945.
- adj. Of or pertaining to braceros, and especially the Bracero Program.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a Mexican laborer who worked in the United States on farms and railroads in order to ease labor shortages during World War II
They then took a crew of illegal "wetbacks," what they called bracero laborers from Mexico back in those days, out into these pecan orchards and they "thrashed" the nuts out of the trees with long bamboo poles, the nuts falling onto large canvases spread under the trees.
(bracero from the Spanish word brazo for arm, meaning strong-armed worker).
A fact for Eric K, using a distinction between “immigrant” and the Bush approach toward workers as economic units, rather than people: from 1942-1964, we had agricultural guestworkers in what was called the bracero program.
Sixty-five years ago, we actually launched a program called bracero, which literally means "arm man" in Spanish and which was meant to attract Mexican arms -- body parts, not weapons.
In the early 1960s, growers relied on seasonal Mexican laborers, brought in under the government's "bracero" program.
There have been several "guest worker" programs over the years, the "bracero" program is probably the one most people remember and it was in place from 1942-1965.
One interesting sidelight - some of the guys I know working here in Northern CA use their father's SS cards granted during one of the "bracero" type periods and eventually the family does collect benefits.
Many FIOB members are farm workers, and some remember the abuses of the old "bracero" program.
But the Mexican consulate decided to allow guest workers who worked during the entire years of the "bracero" program, 1947 to 1964, to apply in Fresno.
But the so-called "bracero" program lasted until 1964, and advocates say the settlement won't help those who worked after 1946, because they still must go to Mexico to get their one-time benefit.
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