Renowned Univision anchor and Emmy-winning journalist María Elena Salinas was booed by students and others for speaking a portion of her speech in Spanish during a California State University, Fullerton graduation ceremony.
Salinas was receiving an honorary degree from the university and made the majority of her speech in English. But the booing began when Salinas began to say some words in Spanish in consideration of the Spanish-speaking parents and families in the audience.
According to one student eyewitness, students and others in the audience began yelling “Get off the stage!” and “Trash!” at Salinas when she also began “offering advice to journalism students to use the tools of media to rebut political figures such as Donald Trump.”
The student eyewitness wrote about her experience in an OC Weekly piece:
“Immediately following Salinas’ speech, a Cal State Fullerton faculty member began listing off accolades achieved by the university. Maybe because he was fully aware of the racial tension in the crowd, the professor seemed hesitant to share that the university is number-one in awarding degrees to Latino students in California and fifth in the nation, something that Salinas proudly pointed out in her Instagram post. It was almost as if faculty were shaken up by the mini, verbal race riot that had just erupted.”
Salinas also addressed the incident on Twitter, calling it “sad racism” and telling her critics that “unless you’re Native American we are all from immigrant families”:
@MariaESalinas We were upset that your address was aimed at one ethnicity instead of the the whole class. Had nothing to do with racism
— Jake Holzschuh (@JakeHolzschuh) May 23, 2016
— Cat (@siciliansnob) May 23, 2016
Jorge Ramos, Salinas’s long-time Univision co-anchor, faced similar Trump-inspired hate last year when he was singled out and ejected from a press conference by the Presidential candidate in Iowa.