NEW YORK, USA - LULAC, the League of United Latin American Citizens, following their condemnation of the Secure Fence Act, released a statement on Tuesday denouncing US banks for their use of heavy steel, time-lock vaults.
"We represent the Latin American community first, but in the name of all Americans we must ask - what kind of message is this?" asked Julian Montez, a public relations representative for LULAC, "People coming into banks looking to do business - honest, hard-working people - have to endure the oppressive imagery of a grim-faced guard standing beside the armored door. With this fascist display, we are telling law-abiding people, 'We don't trust you, we fear you.' This is no less an affront to humanity than the proposed wall along our southern border."
"This so-called 'vault' - I call it 'the paranoia closet' - is divisive and exclusionary. Believing that anyone would come into a bank to commit an act of malfeasance is the darkest sort of cynicism," Montez concluded.
The ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union) weighed in on the statement, supportive of LULAC's position.
"In the increasingly corporate United States of America, an America which values demographics over people, the declarations of the monied classes are unmistakable: 'We will tell you where you may and may not go. Freedom is not absolute. The security of our assets overrides the trite folly of individual rights. You may not pass this way,'" said Quentin Klein, an ACLU media liason, "We stood with LULAC in opposition to the Secure Fence Act, and we stand with LULAC now. The vault - that monument to segregation - creates a barrier between those who have, and those who have not."
Reaction on the street was mixed, as this sampling of opinion shows.
"LULAC is right - this is appalling. First the wall, now the vault - what's next, locking doors on houses?"
"I apologize if this is insensitive, but isn't it prudent to secure something of value in the event that someone tries to commit a crime? In the hope of preventing the crime in the first place? I mean no disrespect to anyone."
"What about this vault, you ask? I'll tell you - this is racism, pure and simple."
"It's Bush's fault!"
A representative of Wells Fargo, one of the largest American banks, crafted a response to LULAC's strongly-worded statement.
"We at Wells Fargo value diversity and understand that our vaults have had a negative social impact," said Benjamin Murtaugh, Wells Fargo Atlantic Region vice president, "As such, we are in the process of removing our symbols of Western oppression, fazing them out over the next twelve months in all of our branches. We will endeavor to safeguard customer assets in the least intrusive way possible, employing plain-clothes armed guards and tripling our security camera placement. These improvements to the Wells Fargo experience will come at a minimal cost to our customers - we expect that the $135 monthly security fees will not pose a great inconvenience."
Some bigoted redneck tried to make the feeble point that security is an acceptable compromise to freedom, but such pap is obviously a thinly veiled call to racism. In the interest of presenting the opposing, wrong view fairly, we paraphrase the moron's statement here.
What do you think of LULAC's anti-vault stance?
I agree with LULAC. Freedom is a cherished concept and should never be infringed under any circumstances.
I disagree with LULAC. I am a racist with a low IQ. I am also hideously ugly.