Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Dear Common Dreams Readers:
Corporations and billionaires have their own media. Shouldn't we? When you “follow the money” that funds our independent journalism, it all leads back to this: people like you. Our supporters are what allows us to produce journalism in the public interest that is beholden only to people, our planet, and the common good. Please support our Mid-Year Campaign so that we always have a newsroom for the people that is funded by the people. Thank you for your support. --Jon Queally, managing editor

Join the small group of generous readers who donate, keeping Common Dreams free for millions of people each year. Without your help, we won’t survive.

People pray at a makeshift memorial for victims of Walmart shooting that left a total of 22 people dead at the Cielo Vista Mall WalMart in El Paso, Texas, on August 5, 2019. (Photo: Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images)

'Your Rhetoric and Your Actions Led Us to This Terrible Moment': El Paso to Meet Trump Visit With Protests Against Hate

"We do not need anybody fanning the flames of hate, anger, and racism," said one local activist

Jake Johnson

With President Donald Trump set to visit El Paso, Texas on Wednesday—just days after a gunman who echoed the president's anti-immigrant rhetoric massacred 22 people—city residents and lawmakers are planning to protest the trip with a simple message: hate is not welcome.

"President Trump is not welcome in El Paso, and his narrative around immigrants and Central Americans should not be welcome anywhere."
—Immigrant rights coalition

"We do not need anybody fanning the flames of hate, anger, and racism," activist David Nevarez told the Washington Post Tuesday. "There's enough in this world already."

A coalition of community organizations, including Border Network for Human Rights and Women's March El Paso, organized a demonstration in the city to coincide with Trump's visit, which was scheduled in the face of strong objections from grieving residents and local officials.

"El Paso was targeted for the horrific shooting because we are a welcoming city that advocates for immigrant families," reads the Facebook page for one protest, which hundreds are expected to attend. "We were targeted for fighting against the dehumanization of our immigrant brothers and sisters, for pushing back against the criminalization of our border, and for denouncing President Trump's attempts to paint our communities as something they're not."

"President Trump is not welcome in El Paso," the event page continued, "and his narrative around immigrants and Central Americans should not be welcome anywhere."

As Vox's Aaron Rupar reported Tuesday, Trump riled up a rally crowd with dehumanizing rhetoric against undocumented immigrants during his previous visit to El Paso in February.

"Murders, murders, murders. Killings, murders!" Trump said, provoking "Build the wall!" chants from his fans.

As Rupar wrote, "The footage is chilling to watch six months later in light of what happened last Saturday."

Rep. Veronica Escobar (D-Texas), who represents El Paso in the House of Representatives, echoed the sentiments of immigrant rights groups, telling MSNBC on Tuesday that Trump "is not welcome" in El Paso.

"From my perspective, he is not welcome here. He should not come here while we are in mourning," said Escobar. "I would encourage the president's staff members to have him do a little self-reflection. I would encourage them to show him his own words and his actions at the rallies."

In a series of tweets Tuesday evening, Escobar said she attempted to schedule a phone conversation with the president about his anti-immigrant rhetoric but was told Trump was "too busy" to talk.

Escobar also said she declined an invitation from the White House to join Trump's visit to El Paso, instead opting to rally with "fellow El Pasoans who are dealing with the pain and horror left in the wake of this act of domestic terrorism fueled by hate and racism."

"I declined the invitation because I refuse to be an accessory to his visit," tweeted Escobar. "I refuse to join without a dialogue about the pain his racist and hateful words & actions have caused our community and country."

The Border Network for Human Rights, an El Paso-based humanitarian organization, sent a letter to Trump urging him to respect the wishes of the people of El Paso and city officials by canceling his trip.

"We, the undersigned, organizations and individuals who make El Paso and Southern New Mexico our home, and our friends and allies across this great land, send you this letter in the hope that, in the aftermath of this heinous crime, you will NOT come to El Paso, our home," the letter reads.

"We say this because we recognize that it is your rhetoric and your actions that led us to this terrible moment," the letter continues. "This shooter was inspired by your words and your attitudes. Your portrayal of asylum seekers as an 'invasion,' of Mexicans as 'rapists and criminals,' of unauthorized immigrants as 'animals,' your constant reliance on sowing hatred and fear, your embrace of racism and white supremacy, all of this over these past years has brought us to this place of pain."


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

"I'm sure this will be all over the corporate media, right?"
That’s what one longtime Common Dreams reader said yesterday after the newsroom reported on new research showing how corporate price gouging surged to a nearly 70-year high in 2021. While major broadcasters, newspapers, and other outlets continue to carry water for their corporate advertisers when they report on issues like inflation, economic inequality, and the climate emergency, our independence empowers us to provide you stories and perspectives that powerful interests don’t want you to have. But this independence is only possible because of support from readers like you. You make the difference. If our support dries up, so will we. Our crucial Mid-Year Campaign is now underway and we are in emergency mode to make sure we raise the necessary funds so that every day we can bring you the stories that corporate, for-profit outlets ignore and neglect. Please, if you can, support Common Dreams today.

 

Abortion Rights Defenders Applaud Judge's Block on Utah 'Trigger Ban'

"Today is a win, but it is only the first step in what will undoubtedly be a long and difficult fight," said one pro-choice advocate.

Brett Wilkins ·


Scores Feared Dead and Wounded as Russian Missiles Hit Ukraine Shopping Center

"People just burned alive," said Ukraine's interior minister, while the head of the Poltava region stated that "it is too early to talk about the final number of the killed."

Brett Wilkins ·


Biodiversity Risks Could Persist for Decades After Global Temperature Peak

One study co-author said the findings "should act as a wake-up call that delaying emissions cuts will mean a temperature overshoot that comes at an astronomical cost to nature and humans that unproven negative emission technologies cannot simply reverse."

Jessica Corbett ·


Amnesty Report Demands Biden Take Action to End Death Penalty

"The world is waiting for the USA to do what almost 100 countries have achieved during this past half-century—total abolition of the death penalty," said the group.

Julia Conley ·


Pointing to 'Recently Obtained Evidence,' Jan. 6 Panel Calls Surprise Tuesday Hearing

The announcement came less than a week after the House panel delayed new hearings until next month, citing a "deluge" of fresh evidence.

Common Dreams staff ·

Common Dreams Logo