Carmelita Torres a strong voice for immigrant rights
Immigration history in the USA has some very dark pages
Today we are hoping that this new administration in Washington can address some of the damages done by the Trump administration to these humble people fleeing violence, poverty and ruination of farmlands by climate change. America the so- called land of the free and land of opportunity has too often been a nightmare of abuse and disrespect for many immigrants.
My parents like many Mexican individuals crossed back and forth through the Juarez/El Paso border crossing at the Santa Fe Bridge. At that point most of the agricultural and other workers coming into the USA crossed there at this border in the early 1900’s
At one point the U.S. government began forcing immigrants to take harsh chemical baths in order to get into the United States. The government said that they were fighting the spread of TYFUS. Immigrant workers both men and women while naked in this cement building were sprayed with harsh pesticides.
On Jan. 28, 1917, 17-year-old Carmelita Torres, who had crossed the border daily from Juarez to clean houses in El Paso, refused to take a toxic disinfectant bath. Press accounts estimated that, by noon, several thousand demonstrators at the border bridge joined her. The protest became known as the “Bath Riots.”
DAVID DORADO ROMO tells this graphic story that everyone should know about and perhaps someday a movie will be made about the immigrants who demonstrated for their rights. The link below will give you his insight on to this abuse of human rights.
We must know this history and hold up Carmelita and others who stood up and demanded respect.
Jan. 28, 1917: The Bath Riots (Zinn Education Project)