This statement was written by members of El Chuco del Norte DSA. We are posting it in solidarity.
Our hearts hurt, our souls hurt, everything hurts. We are mad, we can’t stop crying… as the horrors of white supremacy have hit our beloved El Chuco. Yesterday, in El Paso, we experienced the consequences of a manufactured “national security crisis,” of a fake “invasion” by a president that perpetuates hate against our Latinx community and has made it his mission to “other” us. Just know it wasn’t an El Pasoan that did this. El Paso wouldn’t do this. El Paso is kind. El Paso is love. El Paso is a city where, in the wake of this tragedy, so many people showed up to donate blood that the donations centers couldn’t even accommodate all of us and had to ask us to come back tomorrow or make an appointment. El Paso is a city where funeral homes are saying they won’t charge families for the funeral costs of the victims. El Paso is text messages and phone calls all day long from family and friends checking in on each other. El Paso IS family. El Paso IS home. This was done by an outsider who does not represent El Paso.
This was a home-grown domestic terrorist, a white supremacist who drove over 10 hours to inflict violence on our community. This white supremacist attack ties directly into the increased militarization of El Paso and our US-Mexico border, the concentration camps in our city, and the increased white supremacy rhetoric coming from the White House. And because this is a border town, the only policy or “change” to come will somehow be to further militarize the border in the name of “safety.” Why do our communities have to live through this? Why are we expected to show how resilient and united we are in the face of white supremacist violence, instead of naming and denouncing it and fighting back?!
We are forced to live under the terror of white supremacy every day in our community where we have children in cages and barbed wire lining the walkways of our pedestrian bridges crossing Ciudad Juarez y El Paso. When some of the very victims of this attack drove themselves home, as opposed to receiving much needed medical care, because they were in fear of being deported. The fact that ICE and Border Patrol were on the scene of yesterday’s attack should tell you what life is like for our predominantly Latinx community.
I know this was an act of gun violence, but this tragedy goes far beyond just guns. We can not let the focus be politicized by either political party, we have to understand that this, this was fascism! This was white supremacy violence that directly targeted our community for the sole fact that we are over 80% Latinx. And we cannot let this be another shooting brushed under the rug that is soon forgotten. This will not be a re-run! We have to do something; we can not let people forget about what happened to us and to our community!
We have to come together and protect ourselves… because white supremacy is here, it’s been here, and it won’t go away until we make it go away… we have to figure out a way to make sure that these victims don’t just become another forgotten mass shooting wrapped up in politicking. It is clear that there is a target on our back as a border community and as a community of color.
We ask of our fellow DSA comrades, to please, please, please, refocus after this convention is said and done, and realize what communities like ours are being faced with day in and day out under a fascist regime like the Trump administration. The El Paso community, and all who support us, will mourn this tragedy, as we should, but let our tears and pain transform into political consciousness and action.