By the time you read this column, the Nov. 3rd United States Presidential election
will be over. I, like two-thirds of Americans, hope that by the time this is published, we can breathe a sigh of relief and look forward to a new leader in Jan. 2021, who can push us forward and not turn back the hands of time.
But since I’m writing this forty-eight hours before the final vote is cast, I will stick to the final hours of the campaign, as Donald Trump, after failing on his COVID-19 response and the economy, decided to revert to how he started his 2016 run and his entire term––insulting immigrants.
When all else fails as the saying goes … So as the U.S. hit an all-time high of almost 100,000 cases of COVID-19 in one day on Friday, Oct. 30, El Trumpeto decided he would rename Nov. 1st, which is the Day of the Dead or Dia de los Muertos in Mexico and many South American countries, as the Day of Remembrance for Americans Killed by Undocumented Immigrants.
What a giant F-U to immigrants, especially Latinos. Much like the way he began his campaign in 2016 by calling Mexicans rapists and murderers, Trump ended it by choosing ‘The Audacity Of Hate’ – and a continued path of hate, lies and division.
He could have made it a Day to Remember the Over 230,000 Americans who have died from COVID-19, but instead he choose again to scapegoat and insult immigrants, even though there is no official record that specifically tracks crimes committed by “illegal immigrants” in the U.S.
The closest available data from U.S. ICE and the FBI show that the Trump claims of thousands of murders committed by “illegal immigrants” is absolutely ridiculous and exaggerated. The reality is that all immigrants have a lower criminal incarceration rate; they are a smaller percentage than the overall American population, and there are lower crime rates in the neighborhoods where they live.
So why did Trump pivot back to this issue? Simple, because it plays well with his base of largely racist white, non-college educated men, who believe immigrants are taking over America, running roughshod over them, and are here to take their women, diminish their power base and make America Brown again. It is all a fight for the maintenance of white supremacy.
The Trumpian proclamation came as his senior adviser, Stephen Miller, determined it would be best to announce their planned ‘shock and awe’ immigration plan before the vote––as a political strategy to appeal to their base and tap into the xenophobia, unease and fear many white Americans feel when it comes to losing control and power.
In a 30-minute phone interview with NBC on Thursday Oct. 29, 2020, Miller said a new Trump administration would limit asylum grants, punish and outlaw “sanctuary cities,” expand the so-called travel ban with tougher screening for visa applicants, end Temporary Protective Status and slap new limits on work visas. And most of this would be done through the continued use of executive orders.
Miller’s draconian push to limit immigration and punish those who stand in his way, also came as The New York Times reported that U.S. border authorities have been expelling migrant children from other countries into Mexico, violating a diplomatic agreement with Mexico and testing the limits of immigration and child welfare laws. The expulsions put children from countries such as Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador at risk, by sending them with no accompanying adult into a country where they have no family connections.
But who cares? Not Trump or his supporters. After all they are not children from Norway, and this is the same administration that kidnapped children from their parents, put them in cages and lost them away in a system where they may never see their parents again. Now they are going to kick them over the border to Mexico with no one to care for them.
I can only hope that Nov. 3rd is also the Day of Karma for Trumpeto, Miller and his base as the missile attacks they have continuously lobbed at immigrants comes back to them as a purple tsunami that sends them into oblivion.
The writer is publisher of NewsAmericasNow