When Kamira Trent popped out to pick up some groceries she had no idea that by the end of the day people would be calling her a hero. She was just going about her usual business at a City Market in Rifle, Colorado, when she saw a confrontation that she could not ignore. Trent intervened, and a video of what she did has since gone viral.
It was just an ordinary Monday afternoon and Trent, 30, had stopped at the market, as she often did, to pick up various items for her and her family. But this trip on October 1, 2018, was not like all the others, as a raised voice caused her to look up. Further down the aisle she saw two women being lectured by another lady.
According to reports, the two ladies – Fabiola Velasquez and Isabel Nava Marin – had been conversing in Spanish as they wandered the aisles. Seemingly out of the blue another woman, later identified as Linda Dwire, 64, approached them. She allegedly said that if they were living in the U.S. they should be speaking English.
Trent later told Buzzfeed News that she had overheard the woman’s words and claimed that Dwire said, “You’re in America. You’re in my country. You can’t speak Spanish here – you need to speak English if you’re going to be in America.”
Horrified, Trent decided to step in. While others in the same situation might have chosen to walk on by, Trent firmly believed nobody had a right to criticize others. This is, after all, a woman who has a quote on her Facebook page saying, “If you can’t say anything nice… Don’t say anything at all.”
So Trent intervened in the unfolding fracas and made her feelings known. The 30-year-old approached Dwire and the pair ended up getting into a heated exchange, which was captured on video and later uploaded to Facebook. In the footage, Trent can be heard shouting at Dwire, “You do not harass people – get out of here now!”
As the two women raise their arms, Trent then threatens to summon the authorities. “I’m calling the cops,” she says. “You leave these women alone – get out, go!” Dwire keeps trying to interrupt, jabbing her finger at Trent, but Trent sticks to her guns, shouting, “I have respect, it does not matter – you don’t harass people like this.”
Refusing to back down, Dwire can be heard trying to make some sort of point about the younger generation. “You know what, you will lose this country,” she is heard muttering. But Trent loudly insists, “You do not harass Hispanic women.” The two women then carry on arguing with each other as they move down the aisle.
The commotion did not go unnoticed by other shoppers and the police were called. Dwire was later arrested and charged with two counts of bias-motivated harassment. Released on bond, she appeared again in court on November 5. During the hearing DA Jeff Cheney revealed that Dwire was keen to attend a diversion program rather than face the misdemeanor charges.
Velasquez later spoke of her gratitude towards Trent following the uncomfortable exchange. She said in an emotional post on Facebook that she had “felt a great feeling of helplessness” when Dwire approached her. “I never thought that this would happen to me,” she said.
Speaking later, Trent said she had tried to calm everything down by informing Dwire that she could not force other people to speak in a particular language. But things escalated and she felt that Dwire “wasn’t going to leave them alone. What she said and the way she said it was wrong.”
In an interview with KDVR, Trent said she knew she had to speak up because she believed the women, who had children with them, were scared. “They didn’t know really how to react to it,” she said. “They both tried to walk away from her and she wouldn’t let them walk away.”
Once the dust had settled, Trent had the opportunity to speak to the two women she had helped. She said Velasquez and Marin expressed their gratitude to her for standing up for them. The trio also shared a hug after their emotional experience.
In an odd twist, Trent later learned that she had previously met Marin’s daughter. It turned out that the two women’s daughters had played on a volleyball team together. What’s more, Trent had coached them both.
As for Dwire, she later insisted that the incident had “nothing to do with race” but was rather “a patriotic thing.” She told Buzzfeed that, in her opinion, if people came to the U.S. they should “love it enough to speak English.”
However, Dwire’s claims gained little traction on social media, where the video clip has gone viral. The footage has been viewed more than two million times and commenters have been quick to praise Trent’s actions. Many have said she set a fine example of how to defend others.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the story has touched people all over the world and Trent has been inundated with messages. People have offered her various gifts including sports tickets and a place to stay if she ever visits their neck of the woods. She’s even been labeled a “shero” and a “true American heroine.”
However, Trent said she waded in simply because it was the right thing to do. “I mean I was disgusted,” she told KDVR. “I couldn’t believe I was hearing that.” It seems her moral compass is firmly fixed and pointing towards what is right and proper.
Moreover, Trent clearly has no regrets about wading in. In a Facebook message she told Glenwood Springs Post Independent that she would not hesitate to repeat it. “I would do it again if I needed to,” she wrote.
And while all the praise has been no doubt been welcome, it is setting a good example that matters most to Trent, who hopes her actions may inspire others. Her advice? “Speak up. Don’t sit there and let it happen – it’s not okay.”