Photo by Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images. Right-wing extremists gather outside the U.S. Capitol on January 06, 2021 in Washington, DC
Photo by Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images.

The culprits of distributing this misinformation were right there on social media.

There’s no doubt that Latino Florida voters were fed misinformation. The FBI disclosed the illegal activities, and Latino representatives called it out in the weeks and days before the 2020 presidential election. And the culprits of distributing this misinformation were right there on social media and in the Spanish media forums. With the elections finally over, Florida Latino leaders won’t back down from calling out misinformation and demanding change from those distributors.

Last week, more than a hundred Latino leaders in Florida came together to demand Spanish media to stop spreading lies and conspiracy theories regarding the election results, the pandemic, and the attacks at Capitol Hill. 

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“Let’s be clear that the blame for President Trump’s call to the attack on the capitol is on him, but the Latinx Organizations have been fighting an intentional campaign of disinformation from far-right Latino media that makes those news outlets and shows complicit,” Director of Chispa Florida María Revelles said in a statement to The Americano. “They have allowed and promoted Trump to lie and promote conspiracy theories, fake news and created division among Spanish speaking communities.”

Some of those that signed the letter include Ana Sofía Pelaez of the Miami Freedom Project, María Rodríguez of the Florida Immigrant Coalition, Chris Wills of Cubans With Biden, José Parra of Prospero Latino, Linda Pérez, Boricuas de Corazón Inc. founder, and many more. 

These Are the Demands

“We call on Latino focused and Spanish language outlets to: 

  • ensure program editors and producers fact check content to ensure their reporters are putting out fact-based information
  • take actions to hold pundits fully accountable for promoting hate speech and disseminating positions with no factual basis
  • have production and booking team to integrate more regular and newer Latinx voices into their program to represent ourselves and our experiences
  • tell the stories of Afro-Latinos and the discrimination they face, and include more Afro-Latino voices in front of and behind the camera, 
  • take actions to educate themselves on the diversity of this country, and put resources behind stories that highlight the diverse and complicated history of democracy and racial justice in the U.S.”

Revelles added, “This letter is not about censoring free speech or about what journalists on those outlets, usually radio shows in South Florida, have as personal opinions. It is about a need in Spanish speaking media for journalists that do their jobs and produce accurate, well-supported articles that do not repeat lies and false claims. Not only in this letter, we are demanding our media accountability and honesty, we are also asking that mainstream media invest in serious journalism that includes Latino voices and perspectives not only in shows intended for Latino audiences but in all programming and production.” 

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Revelles said she, and those who signed the letter, will continue to speak up when reporters and editors fail to do their work. She added that they will remain vigilant and denounce when newspapers and outlets use misleading or false headlines. 

Click here to read the entire letter.