Rev. Al Sharpton, a civil rights advocate, faced protests during his trip to the Haitian migrant encampment on the U.S. southern border in Del Rio, Texas.
After touring the area with Democratic Del Rio Mayor Bruno Lozano, Sharpton held a press conference where he was trying to criticize the Border Patrol’s treatment of Haitian migrants using tactics reminiscent of the slavery era.
However, his speech was shouted down by protesters who called him “a disgrace” and “a racist,” Fox News reported.
“We went for an hour and toured the place that we feel is a real catastrophic and human disgrace as people around this world watch the Border Patrol use slave-like techniques—mounted on horses,” Sharpton said. “It compelled us to come and show our voices and our presence.”
Meanwhile, some male voices in the crowd were seeking to drown him out.
“How much money are you making? Why are you here advocating for violence? Del Rio is not a racist city. Del Rio is a loving, caring community,” they shouted.
“We don’t want your racism in Texas. Get out of here. You’re a disgrace. You’re a racist. Nobody wants you in Texas. Nobody wants you in Texas,” the protesters yelled.
Sharpton continued with his remarks, saying that, “The Trump supporters and the right-wingers can scream all they want. We gon’ continue to come back. We gon’ stand with our people to make sure that [unintelligble] is treated in one way and one manner. And we intend to come back over and over again. For people to be treated like this in an inhumane way, for people to feel that they can use weaponization of horses to treat human beings.”
Sharpton was forced to leave the outdoor press conference on Thursday, Sept. 23, after his speech of two minutes and 30 seconds, but he vowed to “keep coming back as long as is necessary.” He also called for Border Patrol’s horse patrol unit to be investigated.
But the protesters continued, “This is a loving community. Get out of Texas. You are wrong. The Border Patrol are heroes.”
According to Washington Examiner, Sharpton took the tour to Del Rio to “meet and pray with refugees in the wake of the humanitarian crisis,” the civil rights organization National Action Network (NAN), which Sharpton founded in 1991, released in a press release on Wednesday.
Earlier this week, a Border Patrol agent on horseback was photographed and filmed by the riverbank in what looked like an altercation with a Haitian man. The agent was accused of using a whip to injure the man and grabbing the man.