Protesting more than 60 “anti-immigrant” bills filed in the Texas Legislature this session, thousands marched from Waterloo Park to the steps of the state Capitol Tuesday.
“We expect two or three thousand people from all over Texas,” said Victor Ibarra.
Ibarra was among a group from Houston, just one of many cities with protestors bused in from across the state. A separate group also marched from The University of Texas . The marches culminated in a rally outside the Capitol at 1 p.m.
During this session, the marchers said a handful of “extemist” legislators have filed needlessly discriminating legislation aimed at the Hispanic population.
“Texas has a lot of variety of nationalities,” said Ibarra. “Those proposed laws don’t go with those situations.”Critics say many of those bills hurt, even target Hispanics, legal or otherwise. Lawmakers like Rep. Leo Berman, R-Tyler, have maintained their stance though.
“We have probably the laxest immigration law in the world, because we’re not following our federal laws,” said Berman, who also said he has filed ten anti-immigration bills, including one to make English the official language of Texas. “We’re giving them free education, free health care, we’re giving them in-state tuition.”From Arizona-style immigration enforcement to forcing schools to report undocumented students, people at the rally fear the future, saying Texas is just making it too tough to live here.
“We want to follow the law – U.S. law,” said Ibarra.
Photography by Rene Renteria
Produced by Jeffry Zavala.
This is a zgraphix production.