Things That Matter

The Democratic National Convention Is Underway And Young People Are Making Their Voices Heard

The Democratic National Convention is underway and people around the county are tuning in for all of the festivities. The convention is all virtual because of Covid-19 meaning that it is easier for everyone to enjoy the political convention. mitú spoke with two young delegates about why they are involved with politics and the importance of being part of the process.

As the Democratic National Convention starts, young Latinos are among the delegates including Zenaida Huerta and Anthony Santiago.

Young People Are Making Their Voices Heard
Credit: Courtesy of Zenaida Huerta and Anthony Santiago

Delegates are representatives at the nominating conventions for the two major political parties. Their responsibility during the convention is to cast a vote for the candidate who won the primary votes in the states they represent. It is possible for anyone to be a delegate in upcoming elections. Just click here and learn the process.

Being involved in politics is something Santiago has been passionate about for years.

Young People Are Making Their Voices Heard
Credit: Courtesy of Anthony Santiago

“I have had an interest in politics for as long as I can remember, starting with my mom and I watching the news every morning while I was getting ready for school and feeling that Barack Obama was a leader I could look up to,” Santiago says. “He inspired me to want to get involved in helping my community as best as I could with any problems that we may face. It’s my goal to eventually run for office and to be a leader in the city of Kissimmee, [Florida], where I have lived for all 19 years of my life.”

For Huerta, it is a continuation of a family’s political legacy.

Young People Are Making Their Voices Heard
Credit: Courtesy of Zenaida Huerta

Huerta first got involved with her family’s political legacy when she interviewed her grandfather. He worked with the United Farm Workers and Huerta wanted to know why he worked so hard for no pay.

“‘It was a lot of work, but it was right,'” Huerta recalls her grandfather saying. “These words stay with me. My grandfather’s values passed onto my father, who was an AFL-CIO campaign manager who organized car wash workers in Los Angeles. Some of my clearest memories as a child are atop my father’s shoulders at labor marches and rallies. Obviously, as a child, I did not know what collective bargaining was, but I knew that I saw thousands of people, standing together, united to make a difference. Collective action is powerful. I am involved not just because I am one voice, but because I am one of many.”

Huerta is no stranger to the delegate process having supported Sen. Bernie Sanders in 2016.

Young People Are Making Their Voices Heard
Credit: Courtesy of Zenaida Huerta

Like many young Latinos, Huerta believes in Sanders’ vision for the U.S. For Huerta, her support of Sanders revolves around the dignity of the working class and Latino laborers.

“According to a March poll by Univision, the top three issues for California Latinos are lowering the cost of healthcare, improving wages and incomes, and creating more jobs,” Huerta says. “This pandemic has affected each of these issues. Latinos have the highest poverty rates in California amongst all racial and ethnic groups. That is why I believe that we need to provide Medicare for All and reduce economic inequality more than ever.”

Santiago is giving his support to Joe Biden.

Young People Are Making Their Voices Heard
Credit: Courtesy of Anthony Santiago

Santiago’s support for Biden, aside from the delegate duties, stems from a respect for the former vice president’s work. Santiago first started to admire Biden when he was part of the Obama administration.

“Personally, I have always liked Joe Biden since I had watched him and Barack Obama over the years and admired their relationship,” Santiago says. I” paid very close attention to the Democratic primary this year, watching every debate and taking the time to look into each candidate and Joe Biden’s plan for healthcare was what I gravitated to most. My abuela was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer a few years ago, and thanks to the ACA she has been able to get affordable treatment and is doing very well today.”

The two delegates are eager to cast their vote for their respective candidates.

Young People Are Making Their Voices Heard
Credit: Courtesy of Zenaida Huerta

Both of the delegates are excited to cast their votes because of the importance of their participation.

For Santiago, it is about being part of the bigger picture of American politics.

“Being part of the convention means a ton to me. I have always wanted to get involved at the local level in order to help improve my community, and as the sole Biden delegate for Osceola county, I view this as a crucial first step,” Santiago says. “Looking through it from a wider scope, I also view this as an opportunity to make a positive change to the entire country. I get to join my fellow delegates in choosing our official presidential nominee to take on Trump and defeat him in November, ending his terrible leadership and making America work for its citizens.”

Huerta feels her sense of duty in representing her generation in casting a vote for Sanders.

“Being part of this convention as part of Gen Z means that I represent a generation that has seen opportunities for economic mobility dwindle throughout their lives,” Huerta says. “As I cast my vote for Bernie Sanders for the Democratic Party’s nomination, I cast my vote for a better future. Although Bernie will not be nominated at the convention, his movement has won by opening the eyes of young Latinos across this country, myself included. As Cesar Chavez said, ‘Once social change begins, it cannot be reversed. You cannot uneducate the person who has learned to read. You cannot humiliate the person who feels pride. You cannot oppress the people who are not afraid anymore. We have seen the future, and the future is ours.’” 

READ: Joe Biden Speaks Alongside ‘Fearless Fighter’ Kamala Harris In First Appearance And Recalls Her Family’s Immigrant Story

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AOC Gets Under Ted Cruz’s Skin With Crack About His Mexican Getaway After He Accuses Her Of Pushing For ‘open borders’

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AOC Gets Under Ted Cruz’s Skin With Crack About His Mexican Getaway After He Accuses Her Of Pushing For ‘open borders’

Alex Wong / Getty

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Ted Cruz are at it again on Twitter. This time it’s about immigration policy. After recently traveling to the US-Mexican border to underline the recent rise in immigration, Cruz accused AOC of pushing for a “full open borders” policy.

And of course, AOC got him with some solid zingers.

AOC in turn hit back at Cruz for recently fleeing his home state of Texas during its power grid collapse to vacation in Cancún.

In response to Cruz’s attack, AOC suggested Mexico avoid allowing Cruz in the next time he attempts to vacation there. She also called on him to resign from office for his attempt to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.

“Ted, this is pretty rich coming from someone who fled their own home (and responsibilities) during an environmental crisis to cross the border and seek refuge in Mexico,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted. “Also you funded cages, expanded cages, and yet you’re complaining about cages. You have no policy, just puff.”

Ocasio-Cortez accused Republicans of hypocritically attacking the current administration’s detention of migrant children at the border after they supported President Donald Trump’s policy of separating migrant parents from their children.

Currently, Democrats like AOC are calling on Biden to impliment more liberal immigration policies.

Republicans have strongly expressed their dislike for the recent rise in migrants which has come as a result of Biden’s reversal of Trump’s most rigid border policies.

AOC is currently a co-sponsor of the Roadmap to Freedom resolution. The resolution calls on the Federal Government to develop and implement a Roadmap to Freedom “in order to overhaul the outdated immigration system in the United States that has gone without significant reform for decades, and to relieve the great human impact an unjust system bears on communities around the country.”

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An Alleged Rapist Is Running For Governor In Mexico And Still Has The Support Of President AMLO

Things That Matter

An Alleged Rapist Is Running For Governor In Mexico And Still Has The Support Of President AMLO

Guillermo Gutierrez/NurPhoto via Getty Images

For years, Mexicans have been taking to the streets to denounce violence against women and to demand accountability from their leaders. However, much of that messaging doesn’t seem to have reached the very top as President Andres Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) continues to support a candidate for governor facing multiple allegations of sexual assault.

A candidate for governor faces multiple sexual assault allegations and still enjoys widespread support.

Félix Salgado Macedonio, a federal senator (currently on leave) is accused of sexually assaulting five women and yet is still in the running for governor of Guerrero.

Despite the accusations he faces, 64-year-old Salgado, has maintained the support of President AMLO, who has claimed that the allegations are politically motivated, and other high-ranking party officials including national party president Mario Delgado. He was considered the frontrunner in the election for governor.

AMLO came to the candidates defense, calling on people to stop politicking and avoid “media lynchings” and asserting that people should trust the party process that was used to select Salgado as candidate.

“We have to have confidence in the people, it’s the people who decide. If polls are taken and and the people say ‘I agree with this colleague [being candidate],’ I think that must be respected. Politics is a matter for everyone, not just the elites,” López Obrador said.

The MORENA party has committed to reselecting its candidate for governor but Salgado is still in the running.

Officials from the MORENA party announced that they would conduct a new selection process to find a contender for the June 6 election. The party’s honesty and justice commission said its members had voted unanimously to order a repeat of the selection process.

While the honesty and justice commission has ordered a new candidate selection process, Salgado was not precluded from participating in it. He indicated in a social media post on Friday night that he planned to seek the party’s backing for a second time.

“Cheer up colleagues! There is [still fight in the] bull,” Salgado wrote on Facebook.

Activists continue to fight back against his candidacy and the president’s support for an alleged rapist.

Women have protested in Mexico City and Guerrero state capital Chilpancingo and the hashtag #NingúnVioladorSeráGobernador (No Rapist Will be Governor) has been used countless times on Twitter.

Yolitzin Jaimes, a member of the feminist collective Las Revueltas, said the withdrawal of Salgado’s candidacy is a positive first step but urged the authorities to continue investigating the rape allegations.

“… He has to go to jail, … he mustn’t return to the Senate and he mustn’t be nominated [for governor] by any political party because … it’s very probable that he’s seeking to go to the Labor Party [a Morena ally],” she said.

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