Why Donald Trump’s Hatred of Mexicans Should Scare You Too
Donald Trump hates Mexicans. Or maybe he doesn’t. But he’s given every indication that he does. And he doesn’t just hate Mexicans from Mexico who come into this country without proper documentation. If you think that, you’re not really understanding the subtext of Mr. Trump’s words. Donald Trump hates those pesky brown people who a swath of the population of this country are scared of. Those brown people who sure, may be family oriented and God fearing, but really are scheming to steal away those good American jobs and want to perpetuate violence against you and everyone you care about. He swears he has Mexican friends, who he has “feelings” for, his Mexican friends are the good ones. The good kind of Mexicans y’all! The ones who come to this country the right way! The ones who pay taxes! The ones who silently nod and die a little on the inside when their friends say hella racist stuff around them!
A little more than a year ago, your girl was sitting in an office building, listening to absurdism personified: Donald Trump’s presidential campaign announcement. I saw the dramatic and drawn out entrance. I saw all of the American flags in the background. I saw the man, that very falsely tan man, get up to the podium and deliver a speech. The word “speech” is a little generous. How about tirade?
On that June day, that will forever live in political infamy, Donald Trump’s topic was my family. And people I’ve never met before just like my family. And me.
“When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”
— queue feminist rage blackout —
My work wife, who has since moved on to do the damn thing at law school, bore witness to said blackout. What I was hearing was not dog whistle racism. It was full frontal racism. Donald Trump was talking about “us”. I immediately pictured my grandpa, a hero by any account. He’s a man of his word, a man who loves his family, and who has always accepted me for exactly who I am. My grandpa has fought his whole life, worked his whole life. I thought of my aunts and uncles, brilliant and charismatic people who all have worked for everything they have, who have started wonderful families of their own, and who all have great taste in music (I think). And I thought of my mom. A woman so regal, so proud, and so untouchable in my universe, that Donald Trump saying those things about someone like her destroyed me.
I remember looking around DC that day to see if anyone looked as outraged as I felt. And sure there were a few of my fellow Latinx folks who had the look. You know the look. Like someone really went out of their way to (insert expletive here) your (expletive) up in a real way. But I didn’t find it, by and large. I found a lot of people laughing and shrugging it off. That was until their identities were threatened, of course, but at the time, they were shrugging it off. And now, a year and a few months later, no one is shrugging it off.
Donald Trump could be our next President. Scarier words have never been typed. But it’s true, he could be. And I’m frankly terrified. Day one, my immediate thought was of my family, and of the possibility that Donald Trump would inflame race based violence against people who looked like me. This has happened. And on subsequent days, new fears have kicked in. Fear for my Muslim friends, fear for my LGBTQI friends, fear for my woman-identified friends, fear for my Black friends, fear for disabled friends. Ever since that June day in 2015, I have been scared.
So I’m here to say, definitively, that Donald Trump’s hatred of Mexicans should scare you. I’m asking you, as a fellow American, as someone who believes in justice and equity, to stand with me and stand against what Donald Trump has been spewing since day one. I’m asking you to love my family like your family. I’m asking you to vote if you can, give money if you can, speak out if you can. Donald has recently been asking people of color “what the hell do[they] have to lose” by voting for him. I’m here to answer that question today: everything.