Los Angeles City Council looks ahead after Newry Martinez resignation and protests

A week after a leaked audio recording of racist remarks prompted the resignation of the chairman of the Los Angeles City Council, the second-largest city in the United States is facing racial tensions that threaten the future of politics. Still reeling from the uncertainty of political leadership.

The leaked voice The Los Angeles Times first reported on Oct.then City Council President Nury Martinez resigned from parliament on Wednesday Los Angeles Politicians, Labor Organizations, and Even President Joe Biden.

Los Angeles County Labor Union president Ron Herrera also resigned, citing his role in the conversation. Alderman Kevin De Leon and Gil Cediro, who could be heard in the leaked audio alongside Martinez, have yet to resign their seats despite public pressure.

In a recording made at the October 2021 meeting, Martinez can be heard discussing the city’s rezoning plan with De Leon, Zedillo and Herrera. In multiple comments, Martinez spoke disparagingly about White Congressman Mike Bonin and made racist remarks about his black son.

The audio release sparked national outrage, demonstration by protesters Calls continue to call for all three councilors to resign at council meetings Tuesday and Wednesday. canceled the group’s Friday meeting Councilors agree to meet with voters and hear their concerns.

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Alderman O’Farrell has served as interim city council president since Martinez’s resignation, but he said he was not interested in remaining in the role. He continues to ask for his resignation.

“We are determined to ensure the resignation of Mr. Cedillo and Mr. De Leon,” said O’Farrell. told local outlet Fox 11 on Friday.“It is absolutely necessary because it presents an obstacle for people to finish their work, move on from this, and begin healing.”

To address Martinez’s vacancy, the Council will decide whether to appoint a temporary successor or vote out of the constituency pending a special election to fill the remainder of Martinez’s term. There must be.

Martinez became the first Latina president of the city council in 2019. Her term will end in December 2024.

The city council must also work to rebuild trust among black legislators, who make up just under 9% of the city’s nearly four million residents, according to Census data.

Pastor Eddie Anderson, the black senior pastor of McCarty Memorial Christian Church in Los Angeles, said the “horrifying statements by local government officials” were “just part of a plan to dilute the black vote and power in our community.” said. “

“There was a real plan for the annihilation of the black people who were here a long time to build this city,” Anderson said.

Ophelia Plato (right) of Oaxaca holds a sign while protesting before the Los Angeles City Council meeting is canceled on October 12, 2022.

Oaxaca community responds to leaked audio of protesters

Martinez can also be heard in audio calling Oaxacan immigrants in the city’s Koreatown section “small, short, dark people.”

“I don’t know where these people came from, I don’t know what village they came from, how they got here,” Martinez said, adding, “They are ugly.”

Los Angeles is home to the nation’s largest Mexican population, and nearly half the city is Latino. According to US Census dataHundreds of thousands of Oaxacan immigrants live in California, with the highest concentration in Los Angeles, according to Gaspar Rivera Salgado, director of the Center for Mexican Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles, according to unofficial research.

Lynn Steven, a professor of anthropology at the University of Oregon who studies Mexican immigration and indigenous peoples, said historical discrimination against these indigenous communities continues today.

“This kind of comment directed at indigenous peoples by non-indigenous peoples like Mexico or Guatemala is another kind of layer of racism,” Stephen said.

Hundreds of members of the Oaxacan community held a solidarity march in downtown Los Angeles on Saturday to continue to demand the resignations of De Leon and Cedillo and demand a public apology from Martinez. LA Times reported.

Contributed by Associated Press. Mark Ramirez, USA TODAY

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