Reactions to President Trump’s “shithole” comment about immigrants from poor nations have come fast and furiously Thursday, as everyone from the news media to celebrities to lawmakers on Capitol Hill has struggled to grapple with hist latest gaffe.
America is, of course, a nation of immigrants and their decedents, and so just about anyone could find the comments offensive. It was only a matter of time before key figures began to weigh in.
But it was clear from the context of his comment – in the middle of a discussion about immigration – that it was directed at Latin American and African nations.
Tom Perez, the Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, is the son of immigrants from the Dominican Republic, clearly one of the countries the president was referring to. He took to Twitter about an hour after the story broke, and sent a subtle but poignant message to the president:
My parents came from one of those countries. https://t.co/tfRRghQflJ
— Tom Perez (@TomPerez) January 11, 2018
That simple statement of solidarity with his fellow immigrant families – no exclamation point, no explanation – sends a powerful message to the president that humanizes the issue in ways other statements haven’t. And it reminds everyone that the president didn’t just offend people living in those “shithole” countries today. He offended so many of his fellow Americans who trace their roots to those same countries.
Trump and his enablers either didn’t know, or don’t care. Either way, it’s an absolute abomination that an official fo the United States government – let alone the American head of state! – would utter those words in public.