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Congressional Hispanic Caucus Chair Rep. Joaquin Castro. Photo: Getty Images
Congressional Hispanic Caucus Chair Rep. Joaquin Castro. Photo: Getty Images

Joaquin Castro brings police brutality in Latinx communities to light

Joaquin Castro is a major voice in the battle against police brutality within Latinx communities.

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The non-Black Latinx community should not overshadow the years-long struggle of police brutality that the Black community has faced.

Of course the years of systemic racism and voicelessness are not near the same level the Black community has been forced to endure, but the recent deaths of multiple Latinx individuals at the hands of police have reignited the call to end police brutality against Latinx people as well.

Latinx people are the second-highest demographic killed by police after Black Americans. Because of this, Latinos must acknowledge the common struggle they historically share with the Black community, and realize their situation is intertwined.

First and foremost, this is a time for Black voices, and Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-TX) knows this. 

“Policing in the United States, especially for minority communities, is inescapable. And too often there has been systemic racism and brutality that both African American and Latino communities have had to deal with,” said Castro in a June 28 interview with NPR’s Weekend Edition.

“It’s not an issue that’s associated with Latinos in the same way that it is associated with Afircan American men in particular, but it has been a real problem for the Latino community throughout the country” he continued.

The recent killings of Andres Guardado, Carlos Ingram-Lopez, and Sean Monterrosa  have not sparked the same widespread outrage as those of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor. 

But it’s not a competition. 

This is largely a time for Black lives to finally be heard, who by and large are the most affected by the system of policing in place.

At the center of it all is police brutality, which Castro says is a major, underrepresented problem in Latinx communities today.

For instance, take Carlos Adrian Ingram-Lopez, who Joaquin Castro has been vocal about on Twitter. 

“He cried out for his grandmother as police handcuffed him face-down for 12 mins. He couldn’t breathe. He was killed by police two months ago, but body cam video was just released — officers must be held accountable,” he tweeted.

Castro hopes the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act that the House just passed can help combat such cases of violence, and also work to protect Black and Latinx communities.

“The good live-saving work of police is undercut by a blue code of secrecy, police unions who never admit when they’re wrong, and politicians who’ve been afraid to take on police unions. This Congress must have the courage to act now,” Castro said on June 25, speaking in support of the Justice in Policing Act.

The House of Representatives passed the landmark police reform bill last Thursday, but it has yet to reach the Republican-majority Senate.

"It's going to take a lot of courage for things to change," Castro continued in his interview with NPR. "And it's going to take courage from politicians at every level of government to do it."

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