A Latino Father Goes Viral and Inspires Daughters Everywhere Amid Anti-Genocide Protests

Image of Lazaro Aguero, a Latino father participating in university protests at USC advocating against the genocide in Palestine.

Anti-Genocide Campus Protests Spread Across U.S. Universities

Photography by brownskinhazel on Instagram

College students are rising up across the country to protest the ongoing genocide of the Palestinian people in Gaza and the lack of action from global governments. After the initial October 7th attack on Israeli people that resulted in an estimated 1,200 deaths, an estimated 42,000 Palestinians have been killed in response, with over 15,000 of those killed being children. The Palestinian death toll count is an estimate for various reasons, including an unknown number of bodies that are still under the rubble, decomposing bodies in unsafe areas that can’t be searched, and the lack of access to a government source that can accurately account for Palestinian citizens.


The University of Southern California (USC) protest is one of many now featured in heavy news coverage due to the clashes between students and law enforcement. USC protests first began after the university decided to cancel valedictorian Asna Tabassum’s commencement speech, a student who has been openly pro-Palestine on social media. USC cited safety concerns for the cancellation of the speech; however, the Los Angeles Police Department confirmed to local NPR affiliate “LAist” last week that no crime report had been opened for the threats. USC then went on to cancel the entire main graduation ceremony.

Image of students at USC with the text: "USC cancels main graduation ceremony amid protests."Image shared by abc7newsbayarea on InstagramImage shared by abc7newsbayarea on Instagram

USC also announced a drastic change to the campus-wide commencement ceremony, and it seems that other universities in the U.S. will follow suit, including Princeton University, Emory University, Cornell University, Northwestern University, City College of New York, and George Washington University because students have joined the efforts in calling for a ceasefire and an end to the genocide on Palestinians.

Since Wednesday night, dozens of protesters have been arrested across U.S. universities. At USC, over 90 people were arrested by the LAPD during peaceful protests because they refused to disperse and disband their encampment (up since last week) in Alumni Park, which is where the university’s commencement events take place. Encampment has been an element of many student-led protests sprouting on college campuses all over the country as a quiet means of disruption. USC protesters stood their ground, but arrests eventually started, with LAPD officers zip-tying people and leading them to LAPD vans.

As reported by NPR, arrests have also been made at Princeton University and Emory University, and there has been heavy police presence at Emerson College and the University of Texas, among others. Tensions are rising on college campuses across the nation as students refuse to stay quiet about their activism and their solidarity with the Palestinian people.

A Latino Father Goes Viral

Amidst the chaos of USC protests and the violent reaction of local and campus police forces, a supportive Latino dad emerged as a gold standard for parents everywhere by showing up to support his daughter, one of the protest organizers on campus. While many parents would counsel their children to “mind your own business” or “don’t get involved in things that don’t concern you,” this Latino dad headed to campus and stood by his daughter.

This “don’t ruffle any feathers” approach is particularly pervasive in Latino culture, where it’s common to be taught to keep your head down and not make any waves - “no te metas donde no te llaman” or “no es tu problema” are phrases Latino children hear often.

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A reporter from ABC7 Los Angeles identified the supportive father as Lazaro Aguero. He confidently stated, “I’m here to support my daughter. She’s studying here, and they’re protesting against a genocide.” He shared that the entire family is against the ongoing genocide and has been aware of his daughter’s efforts on campus.

Aguero also said, “They’re threatening, if we don’t leave the campus we’re going to get arrested. But the students are so brave, look at them, they don’t want to leave the campus.” When asked if he was concerned about his daughter he said, “It does concern me, but my daughter did a right decision. If she rather be arrested fighting for Palestine, I will be the happiest daddy. I will be the happiest daddy if she’s doing the right thing.”

This moving show of support made many Latina daughters proud across social media, and the ABC7 clip quickly went viral. To see a father breaking through machismo beliefs that often lead to controlling behavior and the repression of female power within families was nothing short of awe-inspiring. Thousands of comments can now be found showing the emotional response to seeing a Latino father stand so resolutely by his daughter as she does what so many Latino parents, especially fathers, teach their daughters not to do.

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Many commentators agreed that this viral video served as a reminder not only to other Latino parents but parents across the ethnic spectrum to support their children when they’re putting themselves on the line for acting on their beliefs and seeking change in systems that have been shown to be unjust, unfair, and inequitable.

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The younger generation, as evidenced by students across the U.S. who are raising their voices for Palestine, is following their anti-war beliefs and bringing their parents along with them. Where global governments have stayed silent and stayed put, young people are amplifying Palestinian voices and helping mobilize the masses, not just in their communities but also on social media, across all platforms.


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