Rev. Jesse Jackson encouraged collaboration between the Black and Hispanic communities compared President Trump having Latinos building a his proposed border wall to having Blacks build slave ships.
“When we close ranks on common interests, we win. When we don’t, we lose,” Jackson said Thursday at the “Hispanicize” conference, NBC News reports. The annual conference brings together influential journalists, bloggers and other influencers from the Hispanic community.
Jackson, who held a “fireside chat” at the event, was critical of firms owned by Latino that submitted proposals to the Department of Homeland Security to construct the border wall’s first stage. Bids for the 2,000 mile wall that the president promised during his campaign were due to the government from potential vendors earlier this week.
“If they were going to build slave ships to take Blacks back to Africa, I hope Blacks would not try to get the contracts to build the slave ships,” Jackson said, according to USA Today.
At the Miami conference, Jackson said that the African-American and Latino communities “have a common interest in the protected right to vote,”and that voter suppression among the two factored into the Democratic loss in the presidential election last fall.
— Audrëy Rodríguez (@Audrey_Rodri) April 5, 2017
He also said there are factors that should unite Blacks and Hispanics throughout the country, including bridging gaps in education, health care and technology.
Jackson’s remarks come a day after visiting Memphis on the 49th anniversary of the assassination of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. He brought up the slain icon along with Latino Civil Rights hero Cézar Chavez in his chat.
“I really wish Dr. King and Chavez, from their perch, could see us sitting here,” Jackson said. “This is the new world order.”