Viciously and violently, a group of dark shadows blocks and tackles an innocent man walking amongst the alleyway. The shadows abruptly thrust the poor man into the back of their van, shutting him away from all of humanity. It was pointless for the man to screech for help, just like the cry of an expiring mouse. Because of the Mexican-American War in 1848, Hispanic-Americans today, are brutally discriminated for their language, country origin, and skin color. For 170 years have passed, yet citizens continue to view Hispanic-Americans as a “foreign underclass,” categorizing them into stereotypes of lazy, idiotic and undeserving. It’s time for Americans to stand up and realize that racial injustice (regarding law enforcement) concerning Hispanic-Americans still exists.
When citizens hear the term “racial injustice,” it’s common for them to think of African Americans. However, in secret for 200 years, racial injustice towards Hispanic-Americans has grown exponentially. As a result of all the drama focused on African Americans, the focus of Hispanic-Americans greatly diminished. The PBS public broadcast states, “Both Fountain and Rodriguez say the public debate on police brutality, portrayed by the media as focusing solely on black and white, silences the voices of Latinos” (Down 4). This scene depicts that Americans are blind when it comes to the racial injustice against Hispanic-Americans, for Americans are reluctant to believe the cold treatment they experience. American society remains incompetent because they don’t realize that racial injustice prevails a current problem for Hispanic-Americans. The reason Americans have difficulty in finding support for Hispanic-Americans can be because they don’t understand the big picture associated with racial injustice (regarding law enforcement) against Hispanic-Americans.
When the Americans won the Mexican-American War in 1846, Mexico was forced to grant 55% of their land to the United States. As a result, many Hispanic-Americans were unwillingly forced to immigrate into the United States. Histoy.com states, “The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, which marked the war’s end, granted 55 percent of Mexican territory to the United States. With that land came new citizens. The Mexicans who decided to stay in what was now U.S. territory were granted citizenship and the country gained a considerable Mexican-American population” (Blakemore 6). Now with millions of foreign citizens entering America with citizenships, many American employers took this to their advantage to produce cheap labor. Over time, with the outlook of “using” Hispanic-Americans, anti-Hispanic sentiment grew uncontrollably. Since Hispanic-Americans were classified as “cheap labor,” the majority of the American population viewed this race as an underclass perpetuated by stereotypes.
With all this controversy, there were many outbreaks of mob violence; the lynching of Hispanic-Americans by violent mobs, yet the American society decided to accept this violence because the white race viewed Hispanic-Americans as inferior. These types of actions progressively influenced law enforcers such as police, officials, and judges to become extremely bias towards Hispanic-Americans. Once the world started to categorize Hispanic-Americans in this stereotype, the American society chose to follow this belief blindly. Eventually, Hispanic-American children became affected by this racial injustice, for the court was extremely biased towards Hispanic-Americans. A piece of text provides us with an example of mistreatment of children, “Even children became the victims of this violence. In 1911, a mob of over 100 people hanged a 14-year-old boy, Antonio Gómez, after he was arrested for murder” (Blakemore 9). Hispanic-Americans of all ages were brutally discriminated by the court, solely because of their race. With the rights of Hispanic-Americans being pushed 200 years, it resulted in extreme cases of vigilante injustice.
Hispanic-Americans were suffering under horrific acts of cruelty until the Mexican government pressured the American government. Mob brutality started to decrease, however, once mob brutality officially ended, hatred for Hispanic-Americans did not. Evidence from the passage explains, “As fears about jobs and the economy spread, the United States forcibly removed up to 2 million people of Mexican descent from the country—up to 60 percent of whom were American citizens” (Blakemore 11). Demonstrated in this text, Hispanic-Americans were stripped of all civil rights, for the American government loved to force harsh treatments upon Hispanic-Americans. When Americans started to categorize Hispanic-Americans under a common stereotype, law enforcers were soon empowered to treat Hispanic-Americans inhumanely. The PBS broadcast explains, “ These people were empowered to do things that, in some ways, which would increase the probability of abuse and profiling” (Downs 5). When the American society considered to view Hispanic-Americans as lesser beings, this influenced all the people to treat them by stereotype.
At one point, injustice conditions harshened to a point where Hispanic-Americans compared to wild animals. A passage states, “People with disabilities, active illnesses, and mental health were instantly removed from hospitals and dropped at the border” (Blakemore 13). Regardless of basic human rights, the government viewed Hispanic-Americans as irrelevant and threw them out like garbage. In today’s society, this racial injustice continues to control the lives of Hispanic-Americans. Even though these injustices may not be as harsh as mob killings, they continued to drastically shape the lives of Hispanic-Americans. To demonstrate how racial injustice runs our society today, the “Economist” performs an experiment to determine if Hispanic-American racial injustice is still relevant today. The “Economist” states, “When stopped for running a traffic light, white and black females got a ticket 30% of the time. Hispanic men received tickets 40% of the time for the same offense. This finding tallies with data from North Carolina, where police stop recorded since 2000 show persistent bias against Hispanics” (The Economist 14). Continuing for 200 years, Hispanic-Americans are still being treated as inferiors to the rest of the world. Why shouldn’t all races have equal access to the same rights? American society runs on racial status, for if one is the wrong color then all civil rights will be ignored.
In the perfect world, all people have equal access to rights. However, today’s ruined world has Hispanic-Americans that are afraid to speak up, for speaking up may result in consequences for their loved ones. Therefore, Hispanic-Americans are unable to speak up, and if they do, they receive harsh backlash. Evidence explains, “The case culminated in a two-week-long trial. In court, school officials claimed that Latino students were dirty and infected with diseases that put white students at risk. “Mexicans are inferior in personal hygiene, ability and in their economic outlook” (Blakemore 13). This scene depicts that Hispanic-Americans are thrown deeper in the dirt when they try to dig out. This forces Hispanic-Americans to slide into the deep parts of the shadows and have no chance of reclaiming their social status. A major reason why Hispanic-Americans have a difficult time getting out of the dirt is that Americans have a limited view of the outlooks for Hispanic-American lives.
The major focus of African-Americans has narrowed the focus for Hispanic-Americans. Downs explains, “The movement for black lives is doing something important, elevating all minority lives. And that’s a critical part of the solution” (Downs 21). According to the text, American society limits its focus on the 16 percent that represents the rest of the 84 percent of the Hispanic-American population. Known as a common theme in history, people are not always open to change for when a change occurs, there could be a drastic effect that others won’t accept. The passage explains, “In 1954, a decade after Mendez has turned away from the whites-only elementary school, the United States Supreme Court ruled that all school segregation based on race was unconstitutional in Brown v. Board of Education” (Blakemore 16). One can conclude from the text that fighting for a new change brought many hardships to Mendez. “ Even though this case was a small victory for the Mendez family, Slyvia continued to be harassed by her fellow students while she attended the white school” (Blakemore 20). These are consequences faced with the idea of new changes forced on American society. People will often reject an unknown idea because they worry that there will be disastrous consequences. The stubbornness of American society is the primary reason racial injustice (regarding law enforcement) towards Hispanic-Americans still exists today.
To put an end to Hispanic-American racial injustice, Americans need to realize that Hispanic-American injustice exists. The public need to comprehend the hidden truth undergone to Hispanic-Americans. Evidence from the passage states, “If we keep our response narrow and limited, the initial response will be narrow and limited as well. This increases in problems as we move toward a country that is increasingly diverse” (Downs 9). American society needs to become aware that poor Hispanic-Americans are constantly harassed and tortured. Keeping a small and narrowed view will only prevent the issue from being resolved. Also, the American government needs to implant stricter laws regarding the basic human rights for Hispanic-Americans. Those with citizenships should be treated with respect, for they have full rights to be in America.
Full action needs to be taken to stop this racial injustice. Once the public is aware of Hispanic-Americans being treated with basic human rights, law enforcers will start to treat them equally compared to other races. Americans need to stop focusing their view on Hispanic-Americans regarded with border control, for whenever one is encountered with a Hispanic-American, they won’t instantly assume anything based on stereotype. An excerpt from a real-life situation explains, “But family members question why other tactics, such as the use of a Taser, weren’t used, and why they weren’t allowed to see him prior to an officer shooting him” (Downs 15). This scene depicts how officers are careless to assume that an individual will perform an action based on stereotype. If the American society can alter their narrow view of Hispanic-Americans, these assumptions based on stereotypes will vanish. The step to freeing Hispanic-Americans from their racial injustice chains is to broaden the view of American society.
Underneath all the layers of lies, Hispanic-Americans today, undergo harsh racial injustice (regarding law enforcement). All people should have equal privileges in living a life, for one’s race should be a meaningless factor. With years of suffering for Hispanic-Americans, it’s time that Hispanic-Americans can live without a racial burden. While Americans continue to develop their limited views on Hispanic-American injustices, the improvement of racial injustice (regarding law enforcement) will seek to increase. “You can’t kill us. You can’t send us back…We are doing what your people did. So shut up and just deal with it. Adjust your laws, because it’s not going away” (Moreno 1).