Herman Cain's horrific remarks regarding a deadly electric fence sent shock waves throughout the Hispanic community over the weekend. Here is a man who claims to have a gospel album, yet jokes about the death of fellow man? Not only is this offensive to Latinos, we believe it is just as atrocious to joke about what Hitler did to the Jewish community, and it is equally heinous to joke about the hanging and lynching of slaves. It is reprehensible to Latinos that 2012 Republican candidates continue their hostility towards Latinos and immigrants. In fact, Cain seems to be begging for Latinos to flee the Republican Party in droves with unforgettable hostility with his horrendous anti-immigrant remarks.
When Herman Cain was asked by a Phoenix Times journalist first thing on Monday about his controversial remarks, he refused to apologize when he said: "I don't apologize for using a combination of a fence. And it might be electrified -- I'm not walking away from that."
Learning of Herman Cain's meeting with Joe Arpaio is yet another example of his failed strategy that will cost the Republican Party Latino voters. It is unfortunate that the Republican National Committee Chair, Reince Priebus, will not take leadership in moderating anti-Latino vitriol. Arpaio is known to shackle pregnant women during birth and this adds salt to our wounds particularly when Hispanic culture has a strong matriarch influence.
The National Tequila Party Movement is now officially a female-led political movement. And as Latina matriarchs, we're appalled by the cold-hearted tone the national debate has taken, especially with female figures like Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann.
We believe it is important to have a Latina led political movement because in every presidential election since 1980, the proportion [of] female adults who voted has exceeded the proportion of made adults who voted. It is time to politically educate Latin matriarchs who make decisions of the households.
To begin with, there is already a strong sense of the Latina Matriarch role within the Hispanic community. According to Anne Pyburn Craig, "The "abuela," or grandmother, who has raised a family and often managed the family's day to day affairs, is accorded much respect within the community. Outwardly, she may defer to her husband or son, while the behind-the-scenes decision making is a different matter." Latinas are familiar with the behind-the-scenes decision making, which is why it is important for Hispanic women to know that the Tequila Party movement is female led. Our goal is to inform abuelas, mothers, and all other Hispanic females who the more compassionate politicians are towards Latinos. Matriarchs should know who the is and isn't hostile towards the Latino community.
Most Latinas I speak to are especially surprised to how cold-hearted Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann have become. Both of these Republican women claim to be pro life and compassionate, however, their hostility towards Latinos are repulsive.
Latinos expressed outrage when Herman Cain promoted the killing of undocumented people throughout social network outlets, and as a result, Shirl Mora James, Civil Rights attorney and Vice President of the Tequila Party learned of Herman Cain's ill chosen remarks regarding the deadly fence, she quickly responded with an open letter. She wrote:
"To the GOP Candidate Cain: Why did you called for an electrified fence on the Mexican border that would kill people who touch it. I ask you, Mr. Cain, what about the security of our other American borders? Should we also put an electrified fence on our Northern, Western and Eastern borders? And if not, then, why not? Is your own personal greed so great to be the next President that you have forsaken your common human decency, your compassion for your fellow human beings, the struggles of civil rights movement against segregation and social justice for all people? Look into your soul and ask yourself, is my promotion of the murder of innocent immigrants and their children, behavior that reflects God's will?
Shirl didn't let Bachmann get away with her uncompassionate views toward immigrant human beings, either. She wrote:
"To GOP Candidate Bachmann: Why did you vow to make to build a "secure double fence" and to eliminate "taxpayer-funded benefits" for undocumented immigrants? If you studied and knew current immigration law, you would know that undocumented people cannot obtain any taxpayer-benefits. In fact, legal immigrants must wait five years before they are eligible for any benefits. Moreover, did you know that the undocumented people in America are paying into our social security system and yet they are not receiving any benefits from our social security system? Truth be told, the undocumented peoples' social security payments are filling the void of retiring "baby-boomers" into our social security system. Economically, we need the new immigrants just like America needed our immigrant ancestors."
The female leadership within the tequila party is not limited to Latinos. In fact, Margaret Reyes is a proud Irish-American and she is also an immigration, community and victim's rights advocate. She parallels between the Immigrant Irish of the Potato Famine years and the new immigrants from south of the border. She wrote:
"We see an amazing similarity in how they are perceived and in the war against them conducted by the nativists. Both groups are portrayed as sub-human by these hate groups. Both groups have had religion used against them, both face strict immigration restrictions on the numbers allowed in, both were considered lower in intelligence and ability than the dominant population, both demonized for the ills and troubles affecting the current population."
The female headship within the Tequila Party hopes to parallel the Latin matriarch role within the Latin community. In doing so, we believe we will encourage Hispanic women across the nation to take a compassionate position towards immigrants. It's also healthy for us to use our anger from the anti-immigrant hostility we see coming from 2012 Republican candidates, as we release our frustration at the voting booths. We will not allow GOP Candidates such as Cain, Bachmann and Mitt Romney to forget about their anti-immigrant statements after the Republican primaries are over and they seek the Latin vote once again.
Women are like elephants and our memories are diligently recording actions of Presidential candidates before the general election phase.