Weeks ago I promised the editor of 20-Something Survival that I’d write a piece about Donald Trump and how fed up I am with him. As a Latina, Trump’s racism with a combo platter of misogyny feels like a repeated slap to the face–a reminder that no matter how assimilated or educated people of color may be in America, we are not welcome here. We’re not good enough. Second class. Black thugs. Mexican rapists. Immigrant terrorists. Not even worth defending.
Trump’s barrage of hate and fear mongering makes me feel like I’m spiraling into a dark place. Every time I tried to put metaphorical pen to paper on this guy, it got worse. Even the glorious euphoria that came with watching Trump get bullied by a bald eagle eventually faded.
These feelings just get worse when I hear people defend him. Saying that criticizing him is stooping to his level. Declaring that Trump isn’t racist, just honest. Assuring us that Trump isn’t hateful, just passionate. And every time, the icon next to the comments reflects a white face.
Even white people with a negative-ten-percent chance of voting for him don’t fully understand. They may hear his words, but the words don’t cut them deep. White people are still laughing at him. People of color don’t have that luxury.
When Trump shared an inaccurate tweet about black on black crime, journalists rolled their eyes and ground their teeth. When black people saw it, they felt themselves go cold, because inaccuracies like that follow them wherever they go, precipitating and excusing racially-charged tragedies. Just look at the Black Lives Matter activists being beaten and “roughed up” at Trump rallies.
When Trump called Mexicans rapists, white people shook their heads, but Hispanics everywhere held their children closer and became all the more fearful of the repercussions of ignorant neighbors and biased police.
When Trump screamed about deporting and barring Muslims from America, white people turned to their friends and talked about how cray that is. Muslim Americans turned inward, knowing their mosques and shops and homes would feel the brunt of the repercussions.
People of color want Trump gone. We stopped laughing at him a very long time ago. We’re done with people defending him and we’re done with being the only ones standing against his fear mongering and hate peddling. Compare him to Hitler all you want, but that is not going to prove he is unfit to lead; it’s just going to encourage Neo Nazis to attend his forums and write about “making America white again.”
What we’re seeing here is white supremacy gaining a following and political standing. And I think we all remember how well things go when white supremacists gain momentum. At least, people of color sure remember.
In the social justice world, we have buzzwords. One of those is, “allies.” Men need to ally with women against sexual assault; heterosexual individuals need to ally with and support the LGBTQ community. White Americans, you need to take a stand and ally with people of color against Trump. Don’t just say you sympathize and retweet this article (though you should do that, too, pleaseandthanks). Remember that it’s not you he’s attacking; it’s not your ethnic background, your culture, your identity he’s disparaging and dragging through the dirt. It’s cultures like mine.
Comedian W. Kamau Bell said it best this week:
“Donald Trump isn’t a Republican issue or a rich people issue or a human issue. Donald Trump is a white people issue.
It is time, white people, for you to finally step up and recognize that you also (even more so) have a responsibility to your race… you have to feel it. You have to use words like “as a white person” and “He is an embarrassment to my race.” Stop acting like Trump isn’t the pinnacle and the result of America’s history and tradition of white supremacy.
Simply put, white people, come get your boy.”