Civil rights legend and icon Dolores Huerta is a passionate advocate for marginalized communities across the nation. An inspiration to millions, she received the highest civilian honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Barack Obama, when he bestowed it upon her in May, 2012.

Huerta is still fighting for the dignity of disenfranchised people in America. She says the “hateful rhetoric” that continues to permeate our national dialogue is dangerous and could have lasting consequences.

“I think the rest of the American public has to realize how dangerous this is and we have to attack the racism, the homophobia, the misogyny in our society.”

Huerta – who has endorsed Hillary Clinton – says she is specifically concerned about presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump’s divisive rhetoric and how dangerous he might be as president.

“When we think of what happened in Orlando, we have a lot of people in our country who are mentally unstable and when they hear this hateful rhetoric it gives them license to be able to carry out their feelings that they have,” Huerta says. “We have a lot of people who are not happy, who have issues, so they take their anger out on vulnerable people like people of color, women, gay people, etc.”

Huerta says the Latino community is mobilizing as a response to Trump’s by calling Mexicans rapists and criminals and promising to build his infamous wall. Despite lower turnout in the past, Huerta says Latinos will be a decisive and powerful force this election cycle.

“The Republican party is signing their own death notes when they keep attacking the Latino population. We know the voter registration of Latinos has gone up substantially. We know that people are becoming citizens because of Trump’s attacks on Latino community.”

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