Julian Castro’s Soul- Sucking Speech

By: Erik Hanson

On September 30th, I walked into the Carolina Union Great Hall, which filled halfway to hear Julian Castro’s speech that night. Castro seemed not just the keynote speaker for the evening, but also a landmark in UNC’s “Latinx Heritage Month.” The premises justifying the “Latinx” celebration were dubious, and the introductions to Castro’s speech even more so, but Castro’s speech was truly the crescendo of a delusional and damaging night.

The broader “Latinx Heritage Month” within which Castro’s speech took place should not have been controversial—celebrating good things about a culture is a venerable pursuit. But the double standard that the celebration highlights and the linguistic perversion which it pushes demand attention. The former will become obvious immediately upon considering the ire of the student body had the celebration been one of European or White Anglo Saxon Protestant culture.

The latter, however, revolves around the deeper problem with the “Latinx” (as opposed to Latino, or Latin) in “Latinx Heritage Month,” which is a fake word contrived by impoverished wordsmiths imposing their values on the language of society. The left fabricated the word as a “gender inclusive” spin on Latino/Latina, ignoring that the word Latino has multiple meanings, and by definition can properly apply to all of the people of Latin America. Furthemore, not only is “Latinx” artificial nonsense, but according to a 2021 Gallup poll, the term is preferred by only four percent of hispanic americans. Rebranding “Latino” as “Latinx” is not a Latino movement changing Latino culture, but ironically is a progressive initiative another people’s culture. Due to the general absurdity of the term, I will omit it from this point forward.

On the night of the speech, a line of speakers preceded Castro, introducing him and offering fallacies to the listeners. One speaker called upon the audience to join her in recognizing that UNC stands on “stolen land.” While natives certainly tread on UNC’s campus before the university existed, the speaker’s description of the land as stolen mischaracterizes the situation. Virtually all land in the world has changed hands, and the narrative which the speaker sought to push, that colonizers stole the land, could apply to any land at any time in history. When she sought to condemn western civilization and to portray Native Americans as victims, she displayed a paucity of critical thinking: from whom did the Native Americans steal the land before the Europeans came onto the scene? The native lands that the Europeans took were those of tribes who had conquered other peoples and stolen their lands before the Europeans ever arrived. Sounder’s thinking seriously jeopardizes the narrative of unique European oppression that this speaker pushed.

Another introductory speaker advertised her mission to bring specifically Latinos into the teacher profession. Her backward thought process values the race of teachers over their quality and begs the question, why does she not simply aim to fill public schools and serve all students with the best teachers available? Why do the races of the people around her determine her priorities?

The delusions of these introductory speeches, however, paled in comparison to those of Castro’s speech, which peddled vague assertions, bestrewed false narratives, and deceived the audience members into a victim’s mindset. Castro began by attacking America, castigating slavery as America’s “original sin.” Amore responsible thinker would consider that almost every nation in history has practiced slavery, and what makes America unique is that hundreds of thousands of free white citizens died liberating the slave population. Against a backdrop of slavery-practicing nations, America stands out among history’s first emancipated countries.

Castro then directly addressed the Latino community, declaring that Latinos face systemic racism and voter suppression. It is unlikely that Castro could find evidence of systemic racism against Latinos, and he certainly did not offer any, but there is institutional discrimination in favor of them. Affirmative Action is a policy which favors many minorities simply because of their race. Likewise, Castro provided no evidence, nor could he have, for the suppression of Latino voters, yet he chose to ignore the obvious swindling in the 2020 election, such as when the mainstream media, like NPR, and social media, like Twitter, suppressed pressing news about Hunter Biden’s laptop. The dominant and influential legacy media and big tech social media companies forcing their political priorities onto the American people is a far greater menace to American elections than Castro’s vague “voter suppression.”


Julian Castro during the Q&A session on September 30, 2021. Source: The Daily Tar Heel.

Castro’s race-baiting went to intermission as he advocated for healthcare, housing, and education to become human rights, and for the government to provide these rights. His well-intentioned wish to grant everyone the means of good living sounds virtuous, but ignores history. Declaring a commodity a right does not mean that everyone instantly gets that good, and in the past when the government has tried to run the economy millions of people have died as a result. Castro’s ideas are more likely to take people’s lives than to save them.

When the last section of the evening came around, transitioning into an interview format, Castro returned to telling his Latino audience that they are the victims of oppression. His thoughts were seemingly random and certainly vague as he proclaimed that the members of the Latino community, because they “compete for limited spots,” are actively “pitted against one another.” Naturally, Castro slipped into the passive voice to disguise who is doing the pitting, and offered no information regarding these “limited spots,” and insulted his audience by hoping they would buy this narrative. Everyone competes for limited spots in life, whether in schooling or in the job market. This is true in America and in Latin America for every race. However, by Castro’s logic, anything beneath universal acceptance pits specifically Latino people against each other.

Castro’s last outstanding claim, which asserted that Latinos are not given equal opportunities, once more offered no detail, supplying not a single example of a withholder of opportunities nor an opportunity deprived. But while both of these last two Castro contentions have offered neither evidence nor even a complete thought, both immediately falter against obvious evidence. Castro himself attended Harvard Law School, was the mayor of San Antonio, was a presidential cabinet member, and now currently works as a political analyst for NBC News.

Across the night, Castro delivered a divisive and harmful message to his audience. Building upon the previous similar speeches, he articulated a racially-charged message teaching Latinos that they are the victims of society. No evidence backed up his arguments, and often obvious evidence disagreed with him. The part of the night which I most eagerly anticipated, an audience Q&A, never came. Answering audience inquiries is a staple practice of conservative speakers, who allow dissenters to cut to the front of question lines. But the only questioning Castro received was a short chat with one interviewer who neglected to dig into any of Castro’s claims. After a night of words which were worse than wasted, any chance of uncovering truth passed away. 


Leave a Reply