Thursday, April 25, 2024

Latinos in Texas living in fear after Walmart shooting

While public displays of mourning continue outside the Walmart in El Paso, some of the toughest conversations are happening inside Latino households.

In a house about 10 minutes from where the attack happened, an organization called Border Network for Human Rights is hosting what in Spanish is called a “charla,” or a chat, giving a chance for people to talk about how they are feeling. Dulce Carlos is leading the conversation with multiple generations of El Paso residents, including Mexican immigrants.

“I feel that my heart is broken,” said Guillermo Adame through a translator. Adame has lived in El Paso for 50 years and he was on his way to the Walmart the morning of the largest terrorist attack on Latinos in modern history.

“This individual, he didn’t know us,” Adame said. “I’m scared … for my children and my grandkids and all of us. I’m scared,” said Ermelinda Blanco in Spanish.

The whole room raised their hands when asked if they feel actual fear about what happened — and they all said they have never felt this way before. The conversation also turned to President Trump.

“He has been poisoning so many people with what he has been saying and targeting us Latinos when all we do is work,” said Epifania Castro in Spanish. The fear was palpable as they walked out of the room, a group of people who feel that they could be a target because of nothing else other than the color of their skin, their immigration status and who they are.

For now, this community leans on each other for support.