Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez continues to stir up trouble between herself and fellow democrats, this time tearing into lawmakers of her own party who refuse to use the all-encompassing term “Latinx” to refer to Hispanic people and Latin Americans.
The often controversial New York Democrat said those in and out of her party who question the validity of the term are making other peoples’ self-identification about themselves.
“There are some politicians, including Democratic politicians, who rail against the term Latinx, and they’re like ‘this is so bad,’ ‘this is so bad for the party,’ and like blah, blah, blah, and it’s almost as though it has not struck some of these folks that another person’s identity is not about your reelection prospects,” Ocasio-Cortez, who is of Puerto Rican descent, said in an Instagram video.
The darling of the progressive wing of the Democratic party went on to say those who are critical of the term should concentrate more on worrying about mitigating healthcare costs, rising wages, and other economic issues.
According to polls, most Hispanics reject the term Latinx, but that has not stopped AOC from accusing others of “creating drama” over the use of the term.
“I want to have a note on gender inclusivity in Spanish language,” Ocasio-Cortez, said on Instagram. “People sometimes like to make a lot of drama over the term Latinx.”
She went on to say that before “Latinx” entered the lexicon, people were attempting to be more inclusive and gender-neutral by coining the term “Latin@,” and argued that the drama over which inclusive term to use was unnecessary.
“Gender is fluid, language is fluid,” Ocasio-Cortez said, noting that sometimes people use an “e” at the end to spell “Latine” in an effort to “be as inclusive as possible.”
Left-leaning Democrats like AOC, however, have adopted the term “Latinx” in recent years to use a gender-neutral alternative to the terms “Latino” and “Latina,” which refer to people of Latin American heritage.
But Latinos themselves have roundly rejected the attempt at being “inclusive,” with one 2021 poll finding only 2% of Hispanic voters use the term. The term “Hispanic” led the way among those voters, with 68% saying they prefer it. Latino/Latina came in at 21%, while “something else” garnered 8% support.
Perhaps more troubling for Democrats who have insisted on pushing the term, the poll found that 40% of respondents said the term “Latinx” bothers them, and 30% indicated they would be less likely to support a politician who used the term.
“That’s the irony of ‘Latinx’ — it’s supposed to be inclusive but erases a crucial part of Latin American identity and language and replaces it with an English word,” read a Miami Herald editorial reacting to the poll at the time.
Ocasio-Cortez’s comments also come at a time when Hispanic voters, who have traditionally supported Democrats, have been drifting away from the party in recent years — probably because of the growing influence that she and other “woke-progressives” are having on the Party.