Recently, the Southern Poverty Law Center issued a report titled, “Ten Days After: Harassment and Intimidation in the Aftermath of This Election.” The report cited nearly 900 incidents of intimidation and hate across the country in the days following the Presidential election.
Sarah Silva, Executive Director of New Mexico CAFé (Comunidades en Acción y de Fé de NM) on a taped episode of In Focus says her organization is calling on our public institutions and our government institutions to go on record publicly their stance that they will continue to protect and respect people regardless of race, religion, or creed.
“Those are the values that we aspire to,” says Silva.
Silva says her organization is reaching out to different communities so they can find safe places if feel threatened by any possible hate incident.
A bulk of what the report defines as hate incidents have been targeted at immigrants and African-Americans. However, 40 out the 867 reported incidents are anti-women incidents of intimidation and harassment.
The report also talks about reported incidents of harassment and intimidation against women similar to what President-Elect Donald Trump said when he bragged about sexual assault in a 2005 video that went viral towards the end of the campaign. Silva says, that rhetoric without any consequence shows what is tolerated in society.
“He did something illegal. What he did was brag about something that is against the law; to sexually assault someone, and the fact that that didn’t pose a threat to his election was a scary,” says Silva.
Silva mentions that she is very concerned that people’s rights are insured.
“The thing that we have to be very cautious of is making sure our rights as citizens and people living in the US are protected,” says Silva.
Silva says her organization has been working to bring different faiths and backgrounds together.
“We’ve been having interfaith dialogues so that people can see and hear what the other is experiencing,” says Silva.
New Mexico CAFé continues to reach out to anyone in Southern New Mexico who may feel threatened or targeted for harassment and intimidation at its website http://www.organizenm.org/so they can find a safe place if needed.