Things That Matter

House Passes Legislation To Create Latino Smithsonian Museum

Updated August 13, 2020.

Last July the country moved closer to opening a Smithsonian museum dedicated to Latinos. On July 27, the U.S. The House of Representatives voted on the measure in a voice vote that passed.

In late July, the House of Representatives passed legislation moving us closer to a Latino Smithsonian museum.

The Smithsonian is a collection of museums in Washington on the Nationa Mall. The museums highlight U.S. history throughout the centuries through art, science, natural history, and contributions to American society. For years, history was very limited as there were no museums honoring the people of color who have contributed to American society. That all changed with the National Museum of African American History and Culture. Soon, Latinos could have their own museum as well.

Speaking about the newly passed bill this week, Rep. Will Hurd (R-TX) described the passing as 26-years in the making. “Latino history is American history… Latinos were the only group, that their contribution to our culture and our history, wasn’t properly recognized,” Hurd said. “Bipartisan things can still happen up here in Washington, D.C.”

For years, politicians and their supporters called for a Latino history museum in Washington.

UCLA released a report that echoed the sentiment of a Smithsonian report in 1994. The two reports agree that not enough has been done to highlight and teach the history and contributions of Latinos in the U.S. Twenty-six years apart and both studies find the same lack of representation.

Latinos in power come together and really made moves on this bill.

“It’s time for Latinos to see our contributions, our culture and our history reflected in all institutions, including the Smithsonian museums,” Rep. Sylvia Garcia said on the House floor. “It’s time for our children to come to a museum and see the stories of their own heritage.”

The Latino community, like every other community, has contributed to the U.S. in all aspects of society.

The bill had 295 cosponsors and years of support. The Friends of the National Museum of the Latino American, a nonprofit, has been advocating for the museum since 2004.

“It is a wonderful feeling to know that the House of Representatives has come to realize the importance of an institution that can recognize and commemorate the over 500 years of Latino contributions to the founding, shaping, building, and the defending of this country,” Danny Vargas, chairman of the board of the Friends of the National Museum of the American Latino, told NBC. “We’re elated.”

The bill will now head to the Senate, where it is already being welcomed with bipartisan support.

While there’s still a long road ahead before we can expect to see a museum, Hurd says the current bill has already laid out a board to tackle all the details. First goal on the agenda? Raise $700 million in donations to make the historical museum a reality.

READ: The Smithsonian Is Opening The First Permanent Latino Gallery In 2021 Highlighting Latino Contributions

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AOC’s Fans Took Part In An Amazing Meme Campaign To Celebrate Her Bday And It Will Humble You

Fierce

AOC’s Fans Took Part In An Amazing Meme Campaign To Celebrate Her Bday And It Will Humble You

Yana Paskova / Getty

Talk about a take back.

Yesterday, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez celebrated her 31st birthday, and to pay tribute to her, some of her biggest fans used the congresswoman’s signature looks and iconic words. The result was a mass of Tik Tok and Twitter makeup tutorials set to a mashup of Kendrick Lamar’s 2017 track “Humble.” AOC’s recent spack down of Representative Ted Yoho, who allegedly called the congresswoman a “crazy,” “disgusting” “f*cking b*tch” also made an appearance.

In an ode to AOC’s iconic takedown of Representative Ted Yoho this past July, users donned amazing lip colors and AOC’s finest words.

The AOC Birthday celebration meme saw users do their makeup and style their hair while mouthing a speech AOC gave this past July. Some of the videos featured facts about AOC and her accomplishments in office.

“I am here because I have to show my parents that I am their daughter and that they did not raise me to accept abuse from men,” the user’s mouth while the audio clip of AOC plays.

Olympic medalist Laurie Hernandez even took part in the trend.

Earlier this summer, Rep. AOC admonished Rep. Ted Yoho on the House floor after he called her a “f*cking b*tch.”

According to reports, the confrontation occurred when the two members of Congress were passing each other on the steps of the U.S. Capitol. Rep. Yoho allegedly confronted AOC and accused her of being “disgusting.” This occurred after she made comments that New York’s spike in crime had been caused by the current COVID-19 pandemic.

Rep. AOC rebuked Yoho for his lack of apology at the time on the house floor soon after.

“It is cultural. It is a culture of lack of impunity, of accepting violence and violent language against women, an entire structure of power that supports that,” AOC said before adding “Mr. Yoho mentioned that he has a wife and two daughters – I am two years younger than Mr. Yoho’s youngest daughter. I am someone’s daughter, too. My father, thankfully, is not alive to see how Mr. Yoho treated his daughter. My mother got to see Mr. Yoho’s disrespect.”

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Twitter Bans Donald Trump Death Threats; AOC and Her ‘Squad’ Wonders Why The Platform Didn’t Extend the Same Courtesy to Them

Things That Matter

Twitter Bans Donald Trump Death Threats; AOC and Her ‘Squad’ Wonders Why The Platform Didn’t Extend the Same Courtesy to Them

Photo: Getty Images

Alexandria Ocasio Cortez and her squad of progressive congresswomen are calling out Twitter for their double standards when it comes to free speech on their platform.

We all know it’s been a rollercoaster of a few days. Ever since it was announced on October 2nd that Trump contracted COVID-19, people have publicly expressed their thoughts on the matter via social media.

While some have offered the President, his wife, and members of his team, their thoughts and prayers, others have had a less good-natured responses.

There are members of the public Americans who are so upset with Trump and his handling of the pandemic that they believe his coronavirus diagnosis is his just desserts (and they’re not afraid to say so). Some people have even gone so far as to wish death upon the president on social media platforms.

Twitter has come out against the recent onslaught of death threats against the president, releasing a statement condemning the bad-faith Twitter users.

“Tweets that wish or hope for death, serious bodily harm or fatal disease against anyone are not allowed and will need to be removed,” the Twitter Communications account tweeted on Friday. “This does not automatically mean suspension.”

The announcement came as a surprise to Twitter users–especially public figures in marginalized communities–who were accustomed to receiving frequent violent threats via the platform.

“The decision to suddenly enforce this policy underscores that centralizing content moderation decisions with Big Tech monopolies will always protect the powerful and silence the marginalized,” said trans activist Evan Greer to The Guardian.

Representative Alexandria Ocasio Cortez also didn’t hesitate to point out the hypocrisy of Twitter’s statement.

“So… you mean to tell us you could‘ve done this the whole time?” she tweeted back at Twitter’s communications account. This prompted a response from another member of her “Squad”, Rep. Rashida Tlaib of Minnesota.

“Seriously though, this is messed up,” said Rep. Tlaib. “The death threats towards us should have been taking more seriously by @TwitterComms.”

Members of The Squad, as they call themselves, have been open about the vitriolic harassment they frequently face on social media. These attacks often have sexist, racist, and violent undertones, which makes their messaging all the more frightening.

For example, last year, Ocasio Cortez revealed that she has mornings where the “first thing” she does is review photos of men who “want to kill her”. The fact that now, Twitter is taking a stand against death threats, when before they claimed that free speech prevented them from doing anything, wreaks of hypocrisy.

Representative Ilhan Omar has had similar experiences as AOC’s, but hers have an added layer of Islamophobia. In April 2019, she released a statement saying: “I have experienced an increase in direct threats on my life — many directly referencing or replying to the President’s video. I thank the Capitol Police, the FBI, the House Sergeant at Arms, and the Speaker of the House for their attention to these threats.”

The video Omar was referring to was footage of a speech she gave to a chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. In her speech, she said that Muslims were treated like “second-class citizens” in the United States because “some people did some things” on 9/11.

President Trump retweeted the video, edited to be interspersed with footage of planes crashing into the Twin Towers. He captioned the video: “We will never forget!”

In her statement, Omar continued, saying: “Violent rhetoric and all forms of hate speech have no place in our society, much less from our country’s Commander in Chief. We are all Americans. This is endangering lives. It has to stop.”

Since it’s initial statement, Twitter has further clarified saying in a statement to Motherboard: “We’re prioritizing the removal of content when it has a clear call to action that could potentially cause real-world harm.”

We can all probably agree that this policy makes complete sense. What doesn’t make sense is why Twitter prioritizes Donald Trump’s life over the lives of these four less powerful women.

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