Standing with Immigrant Communities
Columbia Riverkeeper Statement: Standing with Immigrant Communities
On August 3, our country once again suffered an indescribable tragedy caused by gun violence and fueled by white supremacy. In El Paso, Texas, an anti-immigrant gunman opened fire at a Walmart killing 22 people. Twenty minutes prior to this horrific massacre, the gunman posted a racist, anti-immigrant manifesto, which clearly demonstrated his bigoted, dehumanizing beliefs as the cause for his murderous rampage. Most of the victims in the shooting were Latino, including eight Mexican nationals.
Words have power. How we choose to describe acts, people, and groups seeps into our minds and forms our opinions, which in turn spurs actions.
Riverkeeper works with dozens of communities, including Latino and immigrant communities, to promote environmental justice. Social injustice and environmental injustice go hand in hand. Today, Riverkeeper chooses to use its voice and platform to say that it stands with immigrant communities along the Columbia and across the nation. Riverkeeper absolutely condemns white supremacy, white nationalism, and hate massacres spurred by the poisonous rhetoric these groups spew.
Words have power. This rampage, one of the deadliest mass shootings in U.S. history and the deadliest targeting the Latino community, is connected to the emboldening of white supremacists across the country by the continuous use of hateful speech and actions aimed at dehumanizing immigrant communities, especially those coming through our southern border. Words lead to actions and Riverkeeper hopes that our words turn into actions. Immigrants are human beings: please take a moment to read some of the stories of those who lost their lives in El Paso.