Lessons Donald Trump can learn from one of the continent’s biggest holidays.
Image via Flickr user Gage Skidmore
About three months ago, Donald Trump made his now infamous argument that the Mexicans coming over the border “had a lot of problems,” “were bringing crime,” and “were rapists.” What was once seen as just your regular, offhand, insanely bigoted comment has since become one of the defining themes of the business mogul’s historic xenophobic campaign. And despite it all, Trump continues to argue that he’ll capture the Latino vote. “I have so many Hispanics, and they love me,” the candidate recently told New Hampshire voters.
Statistics prove that Trump’s claims couldn’t be more delusional. But as Mexico celebrates its Independence Day, here’s some facts the so-called beloved Hispanic favorite could stand to learn:
Mexican Independence Day celebrates the country’s victory in the 11-year-war against colonialism, economic exploitation, and the Spanish government. While causes for the conflict were diverse, an international business mogul like Trump (who has a long history of sending low-paying jobs to former colonies) wouldn’t have exactly thrived.
Image via Wikimedia
While many other people and movements played a huge role, Mexican priest Miguel Hildago y Costilla has been formally credited with inciting and leading the Mexican War for Independence. In 1810, Hildago performed his infamous “Grito de Dolores,” calling for people to revolt against European-born Spaniards who had overthrown the Spanish viceroy. Hildago’s speech and his politics were grounded in empathy for the poor and the progressive economic populism Trump now so viciously lampoons.
Trump claims that Mexican leaders are sending over their worst citizens, exporting crime and sexual abuse. But statistical surveys show that immigrants actually produce less crime than most American citizens. Mexico might enjoy a strong economy and democracy, but historic instability and one the world’s highest rates of inequality (exacerbated by the drug wars) are pushing people over the border in search of better jobs. Mexico might be celebrating its independence day, but trade imbalances and international drug policy have made America de facto dependent.
Donals Trump says he’s speaking for the silent majority. But the number one country Americans –across race—want to flee to if he wins? Mexico.