We will not fight hate with hate

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Throughout the last week, my phone has lit up at all hours of both day and night. Messenger, Snapchat, Instagram, and text messages all with similar questions. “Did you hear about the Trump rally?” “Tengo miedo (I’m scared),” “Are you going to form a counter-protest?”

After my involvement with leading Black Lives Matter protests here in Storm Lake, it seems as though this was to be expected of me. I have wrestled with the thought of protesting, but, as was evident on Sunday, I did not organize one.  

My initial response was to protest.

It was bred from the current administration’s take on social justice issues. They stand idly by while hate surges but do not condone the protests in the name of people of color and community.  

As a person of color and as a Storm Laker who loves this community dearly, the so-called rally on Sunday hurt.  

It was a truly frightening day.  

An invasive species worse than zebra mussels infested our lake with hate; especially against those of color and immigrants that happen to make up Storm Lake.  

But it’s easy when in pain to lash back to those who caused it.  

Now is not the time to fight fire with fire. 

Check up on your friends and family both of color and not.  

We will not fight hate with hate. That is not the Storm Lake way. We’ll come together after this and build our community up as we always do.  

I, a Storm Laker and Latino, have long ago adopted the traits of my mother and father who are immigrants to this nation. They have spent years helping others and this community solely based on the reason that they love this city and community. A counter-protest to such a rally would only create a divide among the Storm Lake community, and I am not a creator of division.  

Building up this community, and focusing on celebrating the foundations of this city is what I am here for. 

I will continue to post, rally behind, and hold events that celebrate our city and its foundations. This city, though it may have its flaws, is beautiful as the slogan suggests. Storm Lake, the city beautiful — a city beautifully diverse.    

Muchisimo Gracias.

MATTHEW MARROQUIN

A true Storm Lake native

Articles Section: