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Black & Latino Kids Told “go back to Mexico” After Winning Robotics Championship

By Victor Trammell

A group of minority children who won a recent robotics competition in Indianapolis, Indiana were victims of racially-charged insults, which came from some of the spiteful, foolish, and insolent white parents and children who lost the contest.

According to a recent report from The Root, Elijah Goodwin, 10, Angel Herrera-Sanchez, 9, Jose Verastegui, 10, Manuel Mendez, 9, and Devilyn Bolyard, 9, were the winners of a citywide robotics championship, which qualified them to participate in the Vex IQ World Championship, a yearly competition that will be held this spring in Louisville, Kentucky.

This group of students (one black, four Latino) are enrolled at Pleasant Run Elementary School. During what should have been a “Kodak moment” for the five children and their parents, a white supremacist slur was screamed by a small group of white children and their parents.

“Go back to Mexico!” they shouted in their fits of jealousy and anger. Cases like this one prove that American racism and white supremacy is passed down from generation to generation. This incident also proves that such visceral sentiment hasn’t gone anywhere in this country and is very much alive and well.

“They were pointing at us and saying that ‘Oh my God, they are champions of the city all because they are Mexican. They are Mexican, and they are ruining our country,’ ” said Diocelina Herrera, the mother of Angel-Herrera Sanchez.

Lisa Hopper, the coach of the winning robotics team and a second-grade teacher at Pleasant Run told the USA Today about why she felt the white parents and children gave their shameful reaction to her team’s victory.

“For the most part, the robotics world is kind of a white world,” Hopper said. “They’re just not used to seeing a team like our kids. And they see us and they think we’re not going to be competition. Then we’re in first place the whole day, and they can’t take it,” she continued.

This infuriating case of mindless bigotry should behoove white parents to teach their children about the toxic affects of white privilege and white supremacy. There should also be no doubt about the existence of these societal problems and why they should continue to be addressed.

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