Former CLAS Director and other 66 Hispanic Intellectuals Criticize Trump’s Xenophobia

April 27, 2016

Former CLAS Director Carmelo Mesa-Lago, the director of the University Center for International Studies, Ariel Armony, and other 65 prominent latinos from the United States, Latin America and Spain released a statement criticizing the “hate speech” of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. The statement was published in numerous American and international media outlets, including the Spanish newspaper El País and the television network Univision

Academics, scientists, artists, writers and filmmakers state that the billionaire appeals "to the worst emotions, such as xenophobia, sexism and political intolerance," recalling "campaigns in the past against other ethnic groups that led to millions of deaths." The statement also remarks the multiple contributions of the Hispanic community to the US economy, and asks Americans to “no longer tolerate his absurdities.” Please read the full statement released by Carmelo Mesa-Lago andEnrique Krauze below, in the two main languages spoken in the United States:

 

Statement from Hispanic Intellectuals, Scientists and Scholars against Donald Trump’s Xenophobia

The undersigned, Hispanics that occupy academic positions in the United States, as well as intellectuals, artists and scientists from Mexico, other Latin American countries and Spain cannot remain silent against alarming statements from the candidate to the Presidency of the United States, Donald Trump. Since the announcement of his candidacy, Mr. Trump has accused Mexican immigrants of being criminals, rapists and drug traffickers; he promises to deport 11 million of them and build a big wall along the border with Mexico. Trump’s hate speech appeals to the worst emotions, such as xenophobia, sexism and political intolerance; it recalls campaigns in the past against other ethnic groups that led to millions of deaths. Physical attacks on Hispanics and public assertions that Spanish should not be spoken in public have already occurred.

Mr. Trump’s verbal assaults are not based on tested facts, but only on his personal, baseless opinion. Not only does he disdain Hispanic immigrants (later it could be other ethnic groups) but also exhibits a dangerous attitude against his opponents: He stigmatizes them as stupid or weak, launches insults at interviewers for murky reasons, has insulted and expelled a  prominent Hispanic reporter from a press conference because the reporter asked him an uncomfortable question, and launches sexist comments about women, while his supporters and personal bodyguards have attacked peaceful demonstrators.

The expulsion of Mexican immigrants would be catastrophic for states such as California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas where most of the manual work is Mexican. For example, in California those immigrants harvest 200 agricultural products, serve in hotels and restaurants, and collect garbage, jobs that the locals don’t want to perform. California is the leading producer of wine in the country, in harvesting many agricultural products and the principal destination for tourism. These sectors generate $70 billion per year and, without Mexican workers, the state's economy would go to ruin. Something similar would happen in the rest of the country.

Several of the signers are Hispanic immigrants that have been well-received by this great nation and contributed with their work, in various fields, to knowledge, science progress, prosperity, entertainment and the well-being of all Americans. Mr. Trump’s conduct is not worthy of a candidate to the Presidency of the United States, the most powerful country in the world. All of us condemn his behavior and hope that the American people will no longer tolerate his absurdities.

 

Declaración de Intelectuales, Científicos y Académicos Hispanos contra Xenofobia de Trump

Los abajo firmantes, hispanos que ocupamos puestos en la academia de los Estados Unidos, así como intelectuales, artistas y científicos de México, América Latina y España, nos negamos a guardar silencio frente a las alarmantes declaraciones del candidato a la Presidencia de los EEUU Donald Trump.

Desde el anuncio de su candidatura, ha acusado a los inmigrantes mexicanos de ser criminales, violadores y traficantes de drogas, ha prometido deportar a 11 millones de ellos y de construir un gran muro a todo lo largo de la frontera con México. Su discurso de odio apela a las más bajas pasiones, como la xenofobia, el machismo y la intolerancia política. Todo lo cual inevitablemente recuerda campañas que en el pasado se han dirigido contra otros grupos étnicos, y cuya consecuencia fue la muerte de millones de personas. De hecho, las agresiones físicas contra los hispanos y los llamados a prohibir el uso público del español, han comenzado ya.

Los ataques verbales del Sr. Trump no se basan en hechos comprobados sino en su muy personal e infundada opinión. No sólo desdeña a los inmigrantes hispanos (después podrían seguir otros grupos étnicos) sino que exhibe una peligrosa actitud contra sus oponentes, a quienes tacha de estúpidos o débiles. A los entrevistadores, los ha acusado de tener motivos turbios y expulsó de una rueda de prensa a un prominente periodista hispano que le planteó una pregunta incómoda. Trump ha lanzado comentarios soeces sobre las mujeres. Sus guardaespaldas y seguidores atacan a manifestantes pacíficos.

La expulsión de los inmigrantes mexicanos sería catastrófica para estados como California, Arizona, Nuevo México y Texas, donde la mayor parte del trabajo manual es mexicano. En California, por ejemplo, esos inmigrantes cosechan 200 productos agrícolas, sirven en hoteles y restaurantes, recogen la basura, ejercen, en suma, oficios que los americanos locales se rehúsan a desempeñar. California es el principal fabricante de vino y de muchos productos agropecuarios en el país. Es también el primer destinatario de turismo. Estos sectores generan US$70.000 millones anuales, pero sin los trabajadores mexicanos la economía del estado se iría a la ruina. Algo similar ocurriría en el resto del país.

Muchos de los firmantes somos inmigrantes hispanos que hemos sido bien acogidos en esta gran nación y contribuido con nuestro trabajo, en diversos campos, al conocimiento, los avances de las ciencias, a la prosperidad, el entretenimiento y el bienestar de todos los habitantes de los Estados Unidos. La conducta del Sr. Trump es indigna de un candidato a la presidencia del país más poderoso del mundo. Condenamos esa actitud y esperamos que el pueblo estadounidense cese de tolerar sus absurdas posturas.

Héctor Abad Faciolince Manuel Alcántara Arturo Álvarez-Buylla
Homero Aridjis Ariel Armory Roger Bartra
Demián Bichir Silvia Borzutzky Carmen Boullosa
Martín Caparrós Jorge Castañeda Jennifer Clement
Junot Díaz Ramón Díaz Alejandro Jorge Duany
Jorge Edwards Sebastián Edwards Joaquín Estefanía
Julio Frenk Francisco Goldman Francisco González Crussí
Alejandro González Iñárritu Teodoro González de León Roberto González Echeverría
Enrique Krauze Mario Lavista Antonio Lazcano
Emmanuel Lubezki Valeria Luiselli Diego Luna
Nora Lustig Carlos Malamud David Mares
Ibsen Martínez Óscar Martínez Eduardo Matos Moctezuma
Carmelo Mesa-Lago Verónica Montecinos Antonio Muñoz Molina
Moisés Naím Enrique Norten Silvia Pedraza
Elena Poniatowska Alejandro Portes Luis Prados
Rodrigo Rey Rosa Rafael Rojas Vicente Rojo
Ranulfo Romo Diego Sánchez-Ancochea Antonio Santamaría García
Arturo Sarukhán José Sarukhán Fernando Savater
Javier Sicilia Eduardo Silva Guillermo Soberón Acevedo
Edward Telles Mauricio Tenorio Antonio Ugalde
Diego Valadés Álvaro Vargas Llosa Mario Vargas Llosa
Enrique Vila-Matas Rolando Villazón Juan Villoro
  Gabriel Zaid  

 

About Author(s)

Ignacio Arana
Ignacio is a postdoctoral fellow in the Institute for Politics and Strategy at Carnegie Mellon University. His research interests center on Latin America and include presidential behavior, constitutional change, judicial politics, informal institutions, executive-legislative relations, and elections. He has published articles in the Journal of Legislative Studies, Latin American Politics and Society, Latin American Perspectives and Política. Before entering the Ph.D., he worked at the international desks of the newspapers El Mercurio (Chile, 2002-2008) and ABC (Spain, 2008). He can be reached at www.ignacioarana.com. Webpage: http://www.ignacioarana.com