Things That Matter

An Elotero Had His Cart Thrown To Ground And He Got It All On Video

On July 17, Benjamin Ramirez, an elote street vendor in Los Angeles, was threatened and had his food cart damaged by a man later identified as Carlos A. Hakas. Ramirez told Fox 11 Los Angeles that he filmed the entire altercation on his phone because he was previously harassed by Hakas.

In their latest confrontation, Ramirez, 24, told Fox 11 that Hakas was behaving more aggressively, had a dog, and was holding something in his hand.

In Ramirez’s video that was posted yesterday — it has since gone viral — you can hear the Hakas telling Ramirez in Spanish to move his cart. Ramirez says to him, “you have a walkway, I am not moving.”

Los Angeles!Look at these scumbags!We live in a diverse city, we dont need shitty people like this!If you have info regarding the vendor, please message us, there are Organizations and media that want to help out!This is from a very trusted and respected organizer in Los Angeles, Ron Gochez, he and many are ready to help out this vendor:If anyone would like to help out, my friend Azusena Favela has started up a gofudme account to help out street vendors who have their stuff taken away by the cops or for people like the guy in the video. She's trustworthy so I know the money is going to the vendors. Please consider making a small donation. Thanks! https://www.gofundme.com/equipment-for-la-street-vendors

Posted by March And Rally Los Angeles on Monday, July 24, 2017

Credit: March And Rally Los Angeles / Facebook

The man continues to threaten Ramirez, and when he refuses to move his cart, the man pushes it over.

The woman in the video tells Ramirez to “stay the fuck away,” however, throughout the entire video, Ramirez is never near them. He firmly stands his ground and says he is not leaving from that street corner. After Hakas throws the cart down, Ramirez throws chile onto Hakas’ face. When Ramirez calls Hakas a racist, Hakas replies, “I’m not racist, I’m from Argentina.”

“Even after he threw my cart on the ground, he came after me, like he wanted me to attack him,” Ramirez told Fox 11 News.

People on social media were able to ID the assailant. He is from Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Credit: Facebook

As soon as the video went live on Facebook, people on social media searched to identify the attacker. Fans of cartoonist Lalo Alcaraz, who posted the video of Ramirez getting threatened, flooded his thread and posted several of Hakas social media accounts, from LinkedIn to Instagram. Those accounts have since been deactivated. They also ID’d the woman in the video, Hakas partner as Holly Covella.

Posted by Daniel Gonzalez on Monday, July 24, 2017

Cartoonist Lalo Alcaraz posted this cartoon about this fateful encounter.

Journalist Aura Bogado posted a heartbreaking interview with Ramirez’s father, Alex.

Posted by Aura Bogado on Monday, July 24, 2017

Credit: Aura Bogado / Facebook

Alex told Bogado that he felt bad about what happened, especially when he saw his son’s food all over the street. He also said that they had to throw everything away. The only thing that remains is the cart itself, and that is severely damaged as well.

According to Bogado, Ramirez has been a street vendor since 2000 and nothing like this has ever happened to him.

He also added that his son had only been on that street corner (Romaine Street in Hollywood, Calif.) for a couple of weeks.

In the video, Alex told Bogado that the police were called but that they didn’t arrest Hakas because he spoke English and said that Ramirez was at fault.

According to NBC News, Hakas and Ramirez are expected to appear at a court date later this week. The police told NBC News that this is a civil case and that if Hakas fails to appear in court, they will issue a warrant for his arrest.

I just want justice,” Ramirez told Fox 11 News. “I just want him to pay for the loss of my products when he came to attack me.”

Supporters of Ramirez have set up a GoFundme fundraiser to help him restore his food cart.

CREDIT: GoFundme

Casey Horan, donated $10, and wrote: “My heart is absolutely shattered at the hatefulness of that evil man. Sending all my love and positivity to you Benjamin <3.” Anna Armendariz, contributed $20, wrote: “So sad about this new wave of hatred and racism that awoke after last years election. The worst part is that it was from one of our own Latino members.”

Update: AFM Local 47, a musicians’ union that counts Hakas as one of its members, released this statement about the incident:

“AFM Local 47 has been made aware of a recent incident involving one of our employees. This is now a police matter and we cannot comment on the ongoing investigation, nor can we comment on personnel matters.

As a labor union we believe in immigrant and workers’ rights and stand for dignity and respect for all workers in our community.”

READ: After Video Goes Viral, People Are Wondering About Identity Of Boy And Mother In Heartbreaking Viral Video

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Denver Political Committee Whitened Two Latinas’ Faces And Erased Their Spanish Names In Racist Mailer

Things That Matter

Denver Political Committee Whitened Two Latinas’ Faces And Erased Their Spanish Names In Racist Mailer

alexisfordps / Instagram / Diana Romero Campbell for Denver Public Schools / Facebook

A political committee has apologized after mailing out an attack ad against two Latinas who have denounced the ad as racist. After Obama’s education secretary, Arne Duncan, endorsed Alexis Menocal Harrigan, Diana Romero Campbell and Tony Curcio in the race to claim a seat in the Denver School Board, independent political committee, Students Deserve Better, sent mailers calling the three “The School Shutdown Squad.”

The mailers depicted white-washed black-and-white photos of the candidates, and shorted Menocal Harrigan and Romero Campbell’s names to “Alexis Harrigan” and “Diana Campbell.” In a joint statement, the two expressed their outrage over the erasure of their Latina identities coupled with a misrepresentation of their stance on school closure.

At first, Students Deserve Better told local papers that the women’s outrage was just an attempt “to distract” the voters from “real issues.”

“Featured-Image Article-img.” Digital Image. Chalkbeat. 21 October 2019.

“When [the Denver Classroom Teachers Association] whitens candidates’ faces and puts our names — or what they have decided our names are — next to blatant lies and misrepresentations, they are lacking the very integrity we hope our students are learning,” Menocal Harrigan and Romero Campbell told Chalkbeat in a joint statement. 

Menocal Harrigan said the erasure is also offensive to the 93,000 Latino students Denver serves.

“Untitled.” Digital Image. Chalkbeat. 21 October 2019.

Romero Campbell called the mailer “an obvious personal attack” on her ancestry. “When you take away my parents’ name that is so much part of my identity — Menocal — you are taking away the lived experience of my parents and the generations before me who came in search of a better education,”  she said

Later, 18 officials of color joined together to issue a statement calling the attack “painful” and a perfect example of structural racism.

Credit: Julie Gonzales / Facebook

Senator Julie Gonzales issued a statement signed by fellow state Senators Robert Rodriguez and Dominick Moreno, state Representatives Alex Valdez, Serena Gonzales-Gutierrez, and James Coleman, school board members Cobián and Lisa Flores, and Denver City Council members Jamie Torres, Amanda Sandoval, and Candi CdeBaca. All officials of color called it “painful” to witness the erasure of Latinidad for two candidates because it illustrates the additional challenges candidates of color experience. “We have each faced tough races and withstood critiques of our policies and we have each navigated the additional challenges of running for public office as candidates of color,” the statement said.

Even Romero Campbell’s own opponent stood by her, saying, “Diana is right to be offended by this bizarre and sloppy mail piece. I do not need or want any independent expenditure committee spending money on my behalf.”

Alexis Menocal Harrigan is proud to be a first-generation American. 

Untitled. Digital Image. Alexis for DPS. 21 October 2019.

Immigrant support is one of her key policies, and she plans to bring sanctuary status to the table for Denver public schools. She also wants to ensure students’ status and privacy is protected so that immigrant families feel safe to enroll in Free and Reduced Meal Applications once again.

Meanwhile, Romero Campbell’s campaign is built on dismantling systemic injustices within the district.

Untitled. Digital Image. Diana for DPS. 21 October 2019.

The opportunity gap for students is an inheritance of structural racism and injustices within the system. She’s ready to “name and call-out the racial, economic, and social disparities” that oppress students throughout the district. Her campaign page also lists mental health support as a top priority to ensure a “warm and welcoming” learning environment, “given today’s national climate.” Romero Campbell is a proud second-generation American.

Finally, Students Deserve Better issued an official apology.

Untitled. Digital Image. Diana for DPS. 21 October 2019.

Students Deserve Better issued a statement that took full responsibility for the pain and outrage the mailer caused for communities of color. It said it was never their intention to misrepresent the candidates, and issued a direct apology to Alexis Menocal Harrigan and Diana Romero Campbell. It also took the opportunity to distance the error from its donors, the Denver Classroom Teachers Association and the Colorado Education Association.

The candidates were under attack for their stances on charter schools and school closure.

Untitled. Digital Image. Alexis for DPS. 21 October 2019.

In the world of public education, charter schools have long been a contentious issue of debate. Charter schools are publicly funded but are able to run independently from public school curriculums. Progressive reformers have backed Romero Campbell, Menocal Harrigan, and Curcio as the candidates who will ensure equitable access to education for all students, tailored to their specific needs. Meanwhile, the mailers claim that the three are “The School Shutdown Squad,” claiming they want to shut down public schools. In fact, they’ve simply said that school closure will always remain a last resort.

READ: A Viciously Racist Video Has Gone Viral In Which Two Girls Call For The Return Of Slavery And The KKK

‘Jane The Virgin’ Star Gets Hit With More Backlash After Using The N-Word On Instagram

Entertainment

‘Jane The Virgin’ Star Gets Hit With More Backlash After Using The N-Word On Instagram

Somebody get the shovel out of Gina Rodriguez’s hands because she officially went there with anti-black sentiments and said the N-word. Cue tear and the moment she dusts off her Afro-Latina card to excuse herself from backlash.

The former star of CW’s ‘Jane The Virgin’ has been ruffling feathers in the Black Twitter community for a while. Criticism of Rodriguez and her approach to speaking about and to the Black community goes all of the way back to 2017 when the actress criticized “Black Panther” for its lack of Latino inclusion. During a 2018 press junket, the Puerto Rican actress attempted to “All Lives Matter” actress Yara Shahidi when she was asked about being a role model for black girls When the actress tried once again to. Then, this year the actress was slammed not once by twice within a matter of months after she falsely stated that Latinas are paid less than any other race in Hollywood and then cried during a radio interview and essentially accused the Black community of being too hard on her while also using her father, who she claims is Afro-Latino, as an excuse for not being anti-Black.

Now the actress is facing backlash after posting a video of herself using the N-word while singing.

On Tuesday, Rodriguez posted a video of herself singing along to “Ready or Not” by the Fugees to her Instagram stories.

“Voodoo, I could do what you do, believe me,” Rodriguez sang in the video, “N***** give me heebie-jeebies.” The video stayed up on her stories for 3 hours before it was taken down. Later the actress apologized for her use of words saying in another story that she was sorry for singing along to the lyrics, which doesn’t really address the true issue.

“Hey what’s up everybody I just wanted to reach out and apologize. I am sorry. I am sorry if I offended anyone by singing along to the Fugees to a song that I love that I grew up on. I love Lauren Hill and I’m really sorry if I offended you,” she said.

Many have speculated that Rodriguez thought because she was singing a lyrics she could get away with using the derogatory term.

Others have accused the actress of being flip with her apology.

Nevertheless, Rodriguez’s reaction to backlash is pretty on-brand for her previous anti-Black sentiments.