LatinaLista — Last month, the FBI released their annual report on hate crimes.
If you didn’t hear, hate crimes against Latinos is up. In fact, 62.8% of hate crimes were categorized as being perpetuated by an offender who had an anti-Hispanic bias.
Of the offenders who committed these hate crimes, 58.6% were white.
Since the report doesn’t break out for ethnicity when it comes to offenders, there’s no way of knowing if or how many Latinos are categorized as “white.”
Yet, it’s a safe assumption that the number is small.
We only need to read the headlines to confirm these assumptions.
Stories have always existed about those police officers, who instead of doing their public duty to protect the public, are shaking down Latinos.
The latest story is that of a former Washington police officer who confessed to targeting Hispanic motorists.
Prosecutors say back in November and December of 2005, Hilsinger stopped Hispanic motorists for minor traffic violations. Instead of merely asking for their drivers licenses, they say Hilsinger took their entire wallets. The feds say on the first occasion the officer stole $60, while the second time he took $40.
Then in September of 2006, prosecutors say again Hilsinger targeted Hispanic drivers and stole money, only this time the victim was an undercover police officer. On those occasions, $220 and $120 were taken.
However, it’s not just at traffic stops where Latinos are victimized.
Also, at bus stops Latinos are being targeted.
Hispanic businesses are reporting higher than average burglaries.
(Source: The Dallas Morning News)
And in a Plano, Texas high school, a young Latina was a target of a beating by fellow white classmates as she got off the school bus.
She doesn’t know why, but the senselessness of the beating has the earmarks of something more than just a fight for lunch money or over a boy.
The family is pursuing charges against the kids who beat Samira.
“As a family, we just expect the police to do the right thing,” Aracely Ramirez (Samira’s mother) said through a Spanish translator Friday. “It’s for everyone’s safety.”
Unfortunately, as long as the anti-Latino/immigrant rhetoric continues at the same level, safety will become a scarce commodity for all Latinos, and the trust people have in authority to do what is right will dissolve.