A Texas congresswoman said Donald Trump isn’t welcomed into her city after a mass shooting that left 22 people in dead in an El Paso Walmart over the weekend. More than two dozen people were also wounded in the attack.
In an MSNBC interview Monday, Democratic Rep. Veronica Escobar said that the president’s rhetoric has made her community a target. Escobar talked about the possibility of Mr. Trump going to El Paso to visit the victims and said she wants him to consider his “role” in the deadly shooting.
“I hope that he has the self-awareness to understand that we are in pain and we are in mourning,” she said. “We are doing our very best in our typical beautiful El Paso way to continue to be resilient. I would ask his staff and his team to consider the fact that his words and his actions have played a role in this.”
She believes Mr. Trump has demonized the Hispanic community in past remarks at rallies, specifically one in Florida a few months ago when he referred to migrants in a caravan as an “invasion” and laughed off a suggestion to “shoot” them.
“Words have consequences and the president has made my community and my people the enemy,” she said. “He has told the country that we are people to be feared, people to be hated. He has done that at his rallies. He has done that through his Twitter.”
“Hispanic people have been dehumanized — they have been dehumanized by the president, by his enablers, by other politicians,” Escobar added later in the interview. “This is one of the lowest points in American history and if we don’t recognize this as such, we will not have the turning point that we so desperately need as a country.”
The suspected 21-year-old gunman has been booked on capital murder charges and is being held without bond, according to the El Paso County District Attorney’s Office. In a racist document the gunman allegedly wrote, he expressed support for the Christchurch, New Zealand, shooter and denounced the increasing Hispanic population in Texas.
Yet in the face of tragedy, Escobar says her community has become more united.
“People have come together like never before” she said. “We are the epitome of goodness as a community. We welcome the stranger. We take care of the vulnerable. And that is who El Paso is and I am so proud to be a member of this community.”
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