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Weekly Immigration Wire: Why Are Hate Crimes on the Rise?

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Editor’s note: Another post on the climate of hate by Nezua in “Ten Days for Neck-Noosed Dragging:”

noose and rope

WE TALK HERE OFTEN about the climate of hostility, hate, and aggression against Latin@s. Consider this another unfortunate marker in our collection.

MOUNT VERNON, Ohio – A central Ohio teenager accused of putting a noose around a Hispanic boy’s neck and dragging him in a parking lot has been sentenced to 10 days in jail.

Note: This is a weekly feature by Nezua, TMC MediaWire Blogger

On May 30, 29-year-old Raul Flores and his 9-year-old daughter Brisenia Flores were shot to death, purportedly by a group of far-right anti-immigrant activists who broke into the Flores home by posing as police officers. On Friday, Shawna Forde, anti-immigrant activist and Executive Director of the Minutemen American Defense, (MAD) along with accomplices Jason Eugene Bush and Albert Robert Gaxiola were arrested on two counts of first-degree murder and burglary charges related to the Flores murders.

Josh Marshall of Talking Points Memo notes that the MAD website denounces the murders, but wryly adds that the distancing is “a tad belied by headlines down the page,” like “Subhuman Mexicans (God’s Children?) Prey on Countrymen.” The Flores murders are part of a palpable political and social climate of hostility and revulsion toward Latin American immigrants that is running amok in our nation.

As Democracy Now reports, the FBI has noted a rise in hate crimes against Latinos, which isn’t difficult to verify anecdotally. And, according to Laura Flanders at GritTV, “economics, racial panic, immigration, [and] right wing rhetoric” all play a crucial role. If our government continues to spend resources that help portray people as both predatory and “subhuman,” it will continue to foster a perception that violence against this class can be committed in good conscience.