The most effective way to address the critical social and political issues confronting students today is to promote intercultural competence with empathy at the core of language instruction. Language has the ability to shape our thoughts and to alter our consciousness. As students view the world through the prism of cultural openness, they are able to immerse themselves in an alternate reality. This transformation is not only desirable in the practice of empathy, but it is also fundamental for building linguistic proficiency. When the topics of social justice struggles become central to the process of language acquisition, students levy communication skills in Spanish as tools to address the rich and meaningful content they encounter in class.