New Mexico Indian Affairs Dept. issues statement on Oñate protest shooting


A City of Albuquerque crew removes the Juan de Oñate statue on Tuesday, June 16, 2020. (KRQE)

SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – Following the shooting of a man during a protest of the Juan de Oñate statue near Old Town in Albuquerque, the Indian Affairs Department’s Secretary Lynn Trujillo issued the following statement on Tuesday, June 16:

The shooting that occurred at a peaceful protest of a statue of Juan de Oñate is deplorable, and those responsible must be held accountable. Through the leadership of Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, the Indian Affairs Department is dedicated to supporting just, equitable communities across New Mexico and to fostering meaningful dialogue on the issues of race and class that have come to the forefront over the last few months. It is incumbent on all of us to do what we can to dismantle systemic racism in all forms. From supporting public policy that nurtures our most vulnerable members to ensuring that our public spaces pay tribute to our history as a multicultural state, we must continue to work to build a more just and equitable state and nation. The events of last night clearly demonstrate the division and violence that these sorts of monuments evoke. Intimidation and violence have no place in civil society. And now more than ever it is essential that we recommit ourselves to an honest, non-violent dialogue that addresses issues of race and class. As our governor has said, removing the statue in Alcalde is a step in the right direction. We must continue to work to remove symbols that celebrate the oppression as any one group of people. As we saw last night, these monuments to a history of violence serve only to perpetuate that violence.

Indian Affairs Department Secretary Lynn Trujillo

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