Inhumane treatment of Venezuelan refugees reveals anti-Latino sentiment


Graphic by Julianne Cruz

The cruel treatment of immigrants from Venezuela has further revealed anti-Latino racism in America.

Balmore Ruiz Guardado, Opinions Writer

On Sept. 14, a group of about 48 Venezuelan immigrants were dumped in Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts. The man behind this operation, Florida governor Ron DeSantis, deliberately deceived these immigrants into boarding two planes, promising them aid and sanctuary. This is an awful representation of the dismal reality of the culmination of anti-Latino and anti-immigrant sentiment in the United States, allowing for the manipulation of innocent people, desperate for safety, for political ploys. 

This action sparked national outrage, as the public dubbed the act a form of “political human trafficking”. The deliberate use of these immigrants as pawns in a scheme to advance his political agenda is unacceptable. These governors, who are supposed to lead and represent us, have instead taken advantage of their power. English teacher Mrs. Marcy Fine said, “…in our country, in theory, no one is above the law. In practice we see that the law is applied differently to different people, but… if lawmakers are breaking the law or…are doing things that are wrong, they absolutely should be held accountable.” 

Governor DeSantis had openly admitted to his motives behind this inhumane act. He expressed his desire to send the Biden administration a message pushing them to adopt a more stringent attitude towards the enforcement of immigration policies. In an open speech, DeSantis painted a prejudiced picture of immigrants as “burdens” to this country, that “shouldn’t all fall on a handful of red states”. In the U.S., a country globally recognized for its dedication to freedom and acceptance, our government should be more focused on unity rather than increasing racial divisions. Senior Glennis Sanchez said, “I mean I’m not surprised…there has been a long history of America not treating immigrants correctly…Immigrants are humans too and they deserve the same rights as anybody else…”

Unfortunately, this political tactic has not been exclusive to Florida. Governors from other southern states like Texas and Arizona have also participated in this “protest”, carelessly scattering immigrants throughout the country to spread their message. Texas governor Greg Abbott sent two buses full of immigrants to the residency of vice president Kamala Harris, and dumped various busloads of immigrants in New York, Washington D.C. and Chicago. The immigrants being transported were often lied to about where they were going and were left in random cities for other governors to accommodate them.

It is starting to be noticed that these Republican governors have started to get overly comfortable in their positions of power, advancing their own political goals at the expense of innocent, powerless people. Rather than prioritize people’s well being, they have spent too much time attacking their foes with no regard for any consequences. Law teacher Mr. Jonathan Taylor said, “You know, millions of people have left everything in their country of origin to come here, to fulfill the American dream, to build a better life…you hear stories about these immigrants, you know working two and three jobs, making the ultimate sacrifice for their children…how can you not respect that?”

These governors need to be held accountable for their abhorrent actions. They have demonstrated an ethical violation of human decency and taken advantage of innocent people coming to our country to seek help. We are a free democratic country, yet our government is taking advantage of people and denying them their basic human rights, which is unacceptable regardless of whether or not they are documented. As a country built upon the principles of freedom, safety, and democracy, we need to ensure that these Governors are held responsible for these awful actions and face adequate consequences in order to prevent similar actions in the future.