Medal of Freedom Winner: 'We've got to Understand who our Enemies are, it's the Republicans'

By Eric Scheiner | May 31, 2012 | 3:11 PM EDT

( - 2011 Presidential Freedom Medal Award recipient Dolores Huerta told a crowd of protestors last year, “We’ve got to understand who our enemies are, it’s the Republicans not the Democrats.”

Amateur video of the protest has surfaced on the internet.  The video shows Huerta taking the microphone at a May Day protest near the California Democratic Convention in Sacramento on May 1st of 2011.  Huerta tells a Spanish-speaking crowd, "Tenemos que comprender quienes son nuestros enemigos, son los Republicanos no los Demócratas." Which translates into English as, “We’ve got to understand who our enemies are, it’s the Republicans not the Democrats.”

If the player does not load, please check that you are running the latest version of Adobe Flash Player.

Video coverage from the Sacramento Bee of the incident shows one of the protestors to be Democratic party delegate Paramo Hernandez. “Most elected officials haven’t done enough to do justice to the immigrant population.  So, this protest was against the Democrats. The lady (Huerta) that came, on her own I presume, outside, trying to hijack our protest, “ Hernandez says in the video.

“She started telling our group that we should protest against the Republicans not against the Democrats. We told her once and twice and thrice ‘this protest is against the Democrats.’ Then she said, ‘You won’t let me speak?’ I said, no, you are going to start telling us against whom we should protest? You are no one to speak.”

Hernandez continued, “The lack of fulfillment of the promises of Obama and his campaign, we gave him our vote. He said he was going to do immigration reform, he never did. As far as we are concerned he hasn’t fulfilled one single promise that he made to our community.”

In the Sacramento Bee video Huerta discusses the incident, “When I tried to talk and tell them exactly what the Republicans are doing, they wouldn’t let me talk. They’re afraid to hear the truth.”

“I think a lot of people that are there are going to know what the truth is. It’s not the Democratic party that is against the immigrant community, it’s the Republicans all over the country who introduce these bills,” Huerta says.

Tuesday, President Obama awarded Huerta the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Huerta co-founded the United Farm Workers union in 1962 with labor leader Cesar Chavez. received no response in it's attempts to contact Huerta for comment on this story through the Dolores Huerta Foundation on which she serves as president.

(Special thanks to Edwin Mora for Spanish translation for this story.)

Eric Scheiner
Eric Scheiner
Eric is the Senior Video Producer for

Sponsored Links