A prolific activist who never backed down from a fight that improved lives.
Jovita Idar was a staunch defender of the first amendment, women’s rights and equality in education.
Her father edited newspapers, and she was a professional journalist at the young age of 17.
Her two brothers also wrote for her father’s paper – a vital source of news for the Mexican American activists.
Jovita wrote about racism frequently and was openly supportive of the Mexican Revolution and women’s suffrage.
A former teacher, Joviat also believed in education – the first act of Jovita’s organization, La Liga Feminil Mexicaista (the League of Mexican Women), was educating Mexican American students.
Jovita continued her activism her entire life, publishing newspapers, joining the Democratic Party in San Antonio, working for women’s rights, running a free kindergarten, publishing a Spanish language newsletter for the Methodist Church and volunteering as an interpreter at local hospitals – she never backed down from a fight that improved lives.
📍9/7/1885 Laredo TX
Jovita Idar was a Journalist, Teacher, and Organizer in the Tex/Mex border town of Laredo. She started the Mexican Feminist League (La Liga Feminil Mexicanista) in 1911 to teach adults and children to read. She wrote a critique of President Woodrow Wilson, who then tried to have the Texas Rangers close down her newspaper. She stood in the doorway and blocked their entry into the building, to defend freedom of speech.
There is no other means to do it but ourselves, so that we are not devalued and humiliated by the strangers who surround us.
Mexican children in Texas need an education. There is no other means to do it but ourselves, so that we are not devalued and humiliated by the strangers who surround us.
Working women know their rights and proudly rise to face the struggle. The hour of their degradation is past. Women are no longer servants but rather the equals of men, companions to them.
Educate a woman and you educate a family.