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Nation's Oldest and Largest Latino Civil Rights Organization Demands An Immediate Apology from Governor Abbott

May 1, 2023
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Washington, DC - The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), the oldest and largest Hispanic civil rights organization in the United States, strongly condemns the derogatory language used by Texas Governor Greg Abbott when referring to undocumented immigrants in his recent statement regarding the tragic mass shooting in Cleveland, Texas.

In a tweet posted on Sunday, Governor Abbott announced a reward for information leading to the arrest of the perpetrator responsible for the heinous act. However, his choice of words is both offensive and dehumanizing. Governor Abbott referred to the victims as "illegals," a term that fails to acknowledge their humanity and perpetuates a divisive and harmful narrative.

"LULAC firmly believes that every human being, regardless of their immigration status, deserves to be treated with dignity and respect," says Rodolfo Rosales Jr., Texas LULAC state director. "We advocate for comprehensive immigration reform that addresses the issue's complexities while upholding the fundamental values of compassion, justice, and fairness. Governor Abbott should apologize immediately for his callousness," added Rosales.

Governor Abbott's choice of words disregards these principles and undermines the collective efforts of organizations like LULAC that are working tirelessly to promote inclusivity and understanding in our communities. Using such derogatory language, the governor perpetuates a culture of fear and division, which is detrimental to the social fabric of our great state.

"What would Jesus say to the mass shooting victims?" asks Domingo Garcia, LULAC national president. "Governor Abbott's words are unchristian. It is indefensible to any right-hearted Texan to use divisive language to smear innocent victims, including an 8-year-old boy," says Garcia.

"It is important to recognize that the mass shooting victims were individuals with families, hopes, and dreams," says Lydia Guzman, LULAC national immigration chair. "They were loved ones whose lives were tragically cut short. They were not mere statistics or faceless criminals. We must treat all victims of violence with empathy, compassion, and dignity, regardless of their immigration status," she adds.

LULAC urges Governor Abbott to actively dialogue with community leaders and organizations representing marginalized communities, including undocumented immigrants. LULAC stands in solidarity with the families and loved ones of the mass shooting victims in Cleveland, Texas. We offer our deepest condolences during this difficult time and pledge to continue fighting for a more just and inclusive society free from prejudice and discrimination.




The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is the nation's largest and oldest Hispanic civil rights volunteer-based organization that empowers Hispanic Americans and builds strong Latino communities. Headquartered in Washington, DC, with 1,000 councils around the United States and Puerto Rico, LULAC's programs, services, and advocacy address the most important issues for Latinos, meeting the critical needs of today and the future. For more information, visit https://lulac.org/