Hispanic Activists Fight For Tougher Immigration Laws in Texas

Leah Barkoukis
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Posted: Mar 25, 2015 8:00 PM
Hispanic Activists Fight For Tougher Immigration Laws in Texas

There’s a growing number of people in Texas who are standing up for immigration enforcement and the rule of law: Hispanic Americans. While this may come as a surprise to some, it shouldn’t. They are proud Americans first and foremost, and as such, believe in the rule of law.

Pedro Rivera is 53 years old, Hispanic, and a retired military man. He's also part of a growing number of Hispanic Texans pushing for stronger immigration enforcement, including the passage of SB 185, which would stop cities from implementing policies banning local cops from asking immigration-related questions.

“I'm an American citizen and I believe in the rule of law,” Rivera said, reports FOX26. “And being Hispanic, I should not be granted special privilege in avoiding the law. We need officers to have all the tools available to them to keep us safe. That includes asking the question, when you're being detained for a crime or being arrested for an offense, ‘ are you here illegally? Are you a US citizen?'”

The new initiative is being led by Maria Espinoza of The Remembrance Project, a group dedicated to honoring Americans who’ve been killed by illegal immigrants.

Espinoza's new group, which isn't exclusive to people of Hispanic origin, traveled to Austin last week and asked lawmakers to stop Texas cities, like Houston, from adopting their own immigration related policies. It's not a new fight. The Texas Senate actually passed a similar measure in 2011. It prompted protests, then stalled before becoming state law. Espinoza says a lot has changed in four years.

“We have more Latinos who are behind this issue and also law enforcement,” she said. “We have (four) sheriffs who testified with us to remove sanctuary city policies.”

In an interview with Townhall last year, Espinoza explained that it’s wrong for government officials and public servants to place the interests of non-citizens ahead of Americans’.

“We just want basic laws to be upheld so that we can protect our families,” she said. “We can’t afford to not be victorious because losing this battle means losing America.”