On First Day as Governor, Sarah Huckabee Sanders Bans 'Latinx'

The term cannot be used officially in Arkansas state government
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 12, 2023 1:27 AM CST
Updated Jan 12, 2023 6:47 AM CST
On First Day in Office, Sarah Huckabee Sanders Bans 'Latinx'
Arkansas Gov.-elect Sarah Huckabee Sanders is introduced with husband Bryan, and children Scarlett, George, and Huck prior to taking the oath of the office on the steps of the Arkansas Capitol Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2023, in Little Rock, Ark.   (AP Photo/Will Newton)

Among the pressing issues Sarah Huckabee Sanders addressed on her very first day as the governor of Arkansas: the use of the word "Latinx." The gender-neutral term, which can be used in place of Latino, is now banned from being used officially by the state government, NBC News reports. That was one of seven executive orders Sanders signed Tuesday; one of the others banned Arkansas schools from teaching critical race theory and another, according to Fox News, banned the use of TikTok on state devices and government networks. As for the "Latinx" ban, an associate professor of human development and social policy at Northwestern University tells NBC this may be the first such executive order in the US.

That same professor calls the move "surprising," since Sanders had mentioned nothing about the term during her campaign. "That sets the tone for the type of governance that you want to enact, of what you think is the priority, and the types of decision-making you'll do at an office," she adds of the fact that Sanders signed it on her first day. Sanders' reasoning? She cited a Madrid-based cultural institution that disagrees with replacing "o" and "a" endings in the Spanish language with "x." Wrote Sanders, "Ethnically insensitive and pejorative language has no place in official government documents or government employee titles." (More Sarah Huckabee Sanders stories.)

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