“Communities of Color”

In this video clipped from Tuesday’s City Council meeting, District 3 Representative Cassandra Hernandez accuses Mayor Oscar Leeser of discriminating against “communities of color.”

“Mayor Leeser has touted El Paso as being one of the most taxed cities in the country and he also is touting the fact that we are the most indebted in the state. But I have a different perspective and I hope that members of Council will join me in unity to tell a different story. He has made clear that he’s gonna veto every attempt to issue any debt that’s going to support our infrastructure, that is going to support communities of color, disenfranchised communities, as well as communities who have low socioeconomic status. So we can expect that moving forward, because that’s what he said in his comments.”

Wait a minute. Isn’t all of El Paso a community of color?

If you discriminate against everyone, are you really discriminating? Are you discriminating indiscriminately?

I think it’s curious for Ms. Hernandez is suddenly concerned for “communities of color, disenfranchised communities, as well as communities who have low socioeconomic status.” Ms. Hernandez has consistently supported amenities that disproportionately benefit the leisure class at the expense of people who have low socioeconomic status.

She didn’t have a problem giving $22 million to the real estate speculators who bought properties in Duranguito. She didn’t have a problem forcing the people who lived in Duranguito (and the people who still live there and have lived there their whole lives), out of their homes.

She doesn’t have a problem subsidizing the ballpark, with its $8 hot dogs and $8 beers, every year.

Ms. Hernandez doesn’t have a problem charging taxpayers $12 to get into the water parks that they paid to build. That’s $48 for a family of four, and a frozen pizza costs $20.

She doesn’t have a problem charging the abuelitas $3 to go into a public pool facility and sit on the side to watch their grandchildren swim. Not even get in the water. Just to sit on the side.

Ms. Hernandez doesn’t have a problem making the poor people who live in those neighborhoods of low “socioeconomic status” drive their older model cars on streets that are cracked and potholed and buckled. Poor people are less likely to have money in their budgets for car repairs, and bad streets are more likely to cause damage to older model cars.

Ms. Hernandez doesn’t have a problem raising property taxes on poor people every year. Higher property taxes hurt poor people more than rich people. Raising property taxes every year raises rents. Higher property taxes filter down to higher prices for milk and eggs and tortillas. Higher property taxes sap money from college funds.

So it’s curious for Ms. Hernandez to suddenly champion the cause of “people of low socioeconomic status”. Like “tout,” I’m not sure if Ms. Hernandez even knows what those words mean.


  1. On 1/27/21 she got $2500 from Woody and Gale Hunt and on 10/22/20 $1000 from Josh Hunt.
    A lot of others and organizations like PACs also contributed, not unusual here.

    Really, El Paso overall is pretty low economic status but that is not an excuse to spend yourself into oblivion as a community, IMHO.

  2. I wonder if she knows that we are all colored? Or is it that some people to her are not colored? Well hopefully people in her district will see here for what she is now.

  3. Thank you for this…it was very painful to watch that performance and good that the mayor snapped back…at her and at Svarzbein, who were very nasty in their comments.

  4. Thanks to you, Oscar, for twisting her and Swarzswine’s necks. They have obviously no concept of economics or care (real care other than political optics) for their constituents or any citizen of El Paso. They think they rule El Paso, but their job is to REPRESENT US, no lord over us. They’ll be gone next election day.

  5. Since when does she care about the people? She is bought by the oligarch. What an ignorant comment on her part. Would love to see a recall effort filed soon.

      1. I miss the days when the worst controversy was whether Lilly Limon and Cortney were pinching each other under the table. It was a more innocent time.

  6. The advocate for “communities of color” was against the renaming of Robert E. Lee street because it would be harmful to business interests. ?

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