Donald Trump’s comments on illegal immigrants from Mexico are out of touch with reality. People who know immigrants know why the vast majority are here. They needed to survive economically. Their families needed to survive. They could not do that in Mexico, so they took the risks involved and fled to the United States. If people are threatened with economic or physical harm, they flee. It’s the survival instinct. It’s normal.
Trump’s comments were caught on video tape: “They’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime, they’re rapists, and some, I assume, are good people.” Trump “assumes” that “some” are good people, but he doesn’t know because he hasn’t bothered to try to find out; and, yet, he feels qualified to determine immigration policy. It’s difficult to imagine Trump sitting down with immigrant families to simply ask why they’re here.
For centuries, immigrants have been viewed with suspicion. The men, it is feared, come here to rape our women and women, it is feared, enter the United States to steal our money and jewelry. Whenever such fears are expressed about immigrants, we frequently shrug and say “Well, all immigrants go through that. It’s natural.” After several centuries of holding such attitudes toward immigrants, it is time to cast off our ignorance. If we can stop believing plagues are caused by gods and devils, we can put an end to our other expressions of ignorance, also.
Univision, which has co-broadcasted the Trump-owned Miss USA and Miss Universe pageants with NBC for several years, announced on Thursday it will have no more of it. “At Univision,” the company said, “we see first-hand the work ethic, love for family, strong religious values and the important role Mexican immigrants and Mexican-Americans have had and will continue to have in building the future of our country. We will not be airing the Miss USA pageant on July 12th or working on any other projects tied to the Trump Organization.”
NBC Universal, which owns the Miss Universe, Miss USA and Miss Teen USA pageants in partnership with Trump, issued a much weaker statement, saying it disagrees with Trump on immigration and a number of other issues. NBC should put corporate profits aside – to the degree they still exist with pageants – and pull the plug on broadcasting them. The Trump pageants are primarily boobs-and-bottoms shows. While that can be said about many entertainment programs, Trump has drawn a line in the sand during a time when it is more important than ever to demonstrate a commitment to a basic belief in human worth. Other companies have done that in connection with the sale of Confederate material, and NBC needs to do it by pulling Trump’s pageants, which serve as free publicity for him during a presidential election year.