At the Huffington Post, legendary civil rights and labor activist Dolores Huerta has quashed speculation that President Obama’s support for marriage equality will somehow alienate Latino voters. Instead, she says, the fight for immigrants’ rights and workers’ rights has helped many understand “the core American value of equality under the law”:
As a community that has fought and continues to fight against bigotry and discrimination , we understand how dangerous it is to pick and choose who deserve equality and respect. Those of us who have dedicated our lives to working for immigrants’ rights and workers’ rights understand the core American value of equality under the law. A better country for immigrants is a better country for all. A better country for gays and lesbians is a better country for all. We’re all in this together. [...]
The gay rights movement is working for many of the same basic rights and dignities that those of us in the immigrants’ rights and labor movements have been fighting for decades: workplace rights, economic security, access to opportunity. The gay community has been a strong ally for us in the quest for public policy that treats all people with respect and dignity. We will continue to do the same for them.
Huerta also took time to recognize the important intersections between race, sexuality, and gender that are often ignored, noting, “There are just as many LGBT people in our communities as there are throughout the country. We too have gay and lesbian hermanos y hermanas, friends and children.”
The 82-year-old activist is best known for working with César Chávez to found what would become the United Farm Workers. She also originated the slogan “Sí se puede,” which Obama adapted as his campaign motto, “Yes We Can.”