The way that “Trumpism” has chosen to reemerge after its failure as a socio-political “model” in the United States obligates a nation of immigrants to confront it immediately. Yes, stopping its advance is becoming an urgent matter at this precise moment, when Trump and his allies want to become, once again, a false moral guide of order and national security.
Common sense, however, would counsel ignoring the poison this movement wants to spread among a part of the population that still mistakes intolerance with the “best” way to live in society.
That is, the recommended solution would be to not refer to these prior symptoms of the typical Trump rhetoric in order to keep his ideas from propagating again. But owing to the foolishness and the frequency that various voices from the ignominious and anti-immigrant recent history have been expressing, it is preferable to identify them and stop them in their tracks–at least as a warning to avoid repeating he damage that Trumpism has done to this country, both multicultural and multiracial, from which it has not fully recovered.
For example, if the idea of constructing a wall at the border became a political and, therefore, an economic disaster during the prior administration, why then do characters like Texas Governor Greg Abbott once again attempt to impose the idea of a border fence, at least at the south of his state, on top of announcing a policy of arresting undocumented immigrants–in clear confrontation with the central government.
The response is obvious: state leadership is laying political ground for the coming elections, with the goal of capturing the attention of those who still think this way, identifying the “other,” the immigrant, as an enemy to destroy.
But even worse is the proposal from the daughter-in-law of the former president, Lara Trump, who during a TV interview dared to say that the people who live on the border should prepare themselves to take up arms, because “maybe they’ll have to take matters into their own hands.”
What “matter” is Lara Trump referring to? Evidently the issue of asylum and its consequences at the border, an international phenomenon far more complex than what her limited vision of the world supposes. To begin with, it’s a legal right that cannot be taken at gunpoint.
This and other barbarities like it will begin to be heard again, as political times advance and continue to accommodate the utterances of those for whom xenophobia and racism are essential parts of their strategies. This despite the various and deadly attacks perpetrated against people of color during the most anti-immigrant administration in U.S. history, like the El Paso massacre in 2019, which claimed the lives of twenty-three people; or the separation of families at the border, the worst damage suffered by thousands of children ripped from their parents’ arms and confined, for a long time, in migrant detention centers.
However, one thing is also certain: this absurd racial and anti-immigrant anachronism no longer has a place in a society that is trying to overcome its prejudices and is a witness, right now, to how the immigration issue can be approached in another way, one that is more humane and just; especially not at a time when the essential nature of the undocumented immigrants’ labor has been accepted and whose future depends on the legislative debate, in a democratic society that has recognized their social, economic, cultural, and demographic importance.
Unfortunately, just as there are mouths who have dedicated themselves to spreading incendiary statements against immigrants, there are also ears that still prefer to listen to the “siren call” and show up as supporters, without caring about how uninformed they really are.
The socially conscious must do everything they can to keep said resurgence of Trumpism, with its violent and xenophobic nature, from concretizing. Do this with actions in immigrants’ favor that undermine the ideas of the former president–among those who know nothing about the immigration issue, nor why these same anti-immigrant characters find themselves in such a privileged position in this world or why others–millions of people–suffer the consequences of a completely unequal international economic system. That is, it’s not a matter of opportunities nor merit, but the distribution of exactly what these millions of human beings who historically have been forced to migrate don’t have. It’s as simple as that.
Against the barbarity that Trumpism represented for the United States and much of the world, democratic civility is once again the best antidote. Fortunately, this is being taken up by a faction of society that has matured and does not want to be identified with intolerance again.
To read the Spanish version of this article click here.