L.A. City Council President Nury Martinez’s has us closing out Latine Heritage Month with racist remarks that are inexcusable. We have a lot of work to continue dismantling the racist mindset that prevails.
We’re calling it out. If you think that being Latine excuses you from racism and colorism – you’re sadly mistaken. The racism and colorism perpetuated within the Latine community need to stop. As a company devoted to amplifying the diverse stories and voices within the Latine community, we will not remain silent in the wake of L.A. City Council President Nury Martinez’s racist comments via a recently surfaced audio recording.
Inexcusable at every level.— Ana Flores – Lead with L❤️VE (@anaflores_me) October 10, 2022
Feeling embarrased and ashamed.
This doesn’t represent us all but the glaring truth is that it still represents many Latine that can’t admit the inherent racism, colorism, xenophobia and classism that still tears us apart. https://t.co/TiAPgQJbpN
Her racist remarks are not a one-off incident. Sadly, it’s the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the unaddressed racism found within our community, much of which happens behind closed doors, just like Nury Martinez, Kevin de León, and Gil Cedillo thought when they spewed their hateful comments. Her statement holds a magnifying glass on harmful rhetoric that is part of a much bigger issue – an issue that stems from the internalized racism and colonized mindset that the Latine community needs to continue to unpack. So many of us have yet to embrace our full Latinidad, which includes being Black and Indigenous. And the sort of unacceptable language expressed by Martinez, a Latina in a leadership role that was supposed to represent our community, exacerbates the racial divide that already exists within our diverse tapestry as a people.
We’ve said it before, and we’ll repeat it: silence is violence. While we know that the shameful behavior of these officials does not represent us all, it’s a stark reminder that these sentiments are still prevalent in our community. We cannot sit here and not speak out against a harmful mentality that continues to tarnish the relationships between Latine, Indigenous, Black people, Jewish people, and all marginalized communities.
“There is no room for racism in Los Angeles, a city nourished by diversity and the home of communities with different ways of thinking and organizing.”
Yes, we need new leaders. Yes, as a community, we need to take action that puts people in positions of power that will heal the racial divide, not perpetuate it. But we can’t just wait and rely on the pace of a bureaucratic system. Instead, we must look at ourselves and do the inner work of auto-decolonization. We must look within our families and communities and courageously face head-on where the colonizer mindset prevails.
#WeAllGrow continues to create space for deep listening and learning about this issue. We will continue to drive change and commit to pushing forward the representation of Afro-Latines and Indigenous peoples within our platform and celebrate the full spectrum of the diversity in our comunidad and drive for equality.