September 16, 2015
By Joe Maniscalco
New York, NY – If Republican frontrunner Donald Trump is wondering where to start deporting the 11 million people he says need to be sent packing, he might want to start with all the Latino men and women working to help keep his swanky 1 Central Park West hotel afloat.
“Most of the people who work in this hotel are Latinos, so I don’t know why [Donald Trump] is attacking them,” 24-year-old college student Shaila Ramos told LaborPress on Tuesday. “It’s just racist.”
Ramos was part of a vocal demonstration coordinated by Make the Road New York held outside the Trump International Hotel & Tower this week, in which the billionaire former reality TV star turned presidential wannabe was lambasted for his continued attacks on immigrant workers.
“The fact that he has so many supporters just breaks my heart,” Ramos said. “I know that there is racism — I face it every day as well — but what he has said against undocumented immigrants, Mexicans and people of color is just anti-American.”
“The Donald” began firing his wildly xenophobic rants right out of the gate. During his June presidential announcement, Trump said, “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re sending people that have lots of problems. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists.”
That certainly doesn’t describe people like Ramos, a University of California, Santa Cruz student and Make the Road New York intern. Or Magdalena Brito, a 70-year-old Latino immigrant who helps support her family cleaning no less than eight houses a week.
“[Trump] is totally hateful,” Brito said on Tuesday. “The words coming from him have no meaning — they make no sense to us. All of us are immigrants — he’s an immigrant. If you count back to all the people who have come here, they’re all immigrants. Just like him and his family.”
CNN is scheduled to broadcast the next Republican presidential debate on September 17. On Tuesday, Make the Road Organizer Natalia Aristizabal called on the Trump campaign to ditch all the hateful rhetoric their candidate has been spewing against hardworking Latino immigrants.
“Mexicans and Latinos are an integral part of our communities,” Aristizabal said. “We are workers, we are students, and we are part of what makes the fabric of New York so unique. If he, or any other presidential candidate wants to go for the Oval Office, they need to understand our valuable contributions to this country, and stop the hate.”
Far from being the villainous, problem-plagued characters Trump is attempting to portray them as in the corporate media, those at this week’s demonstration argued that, regardless of their documentation status, Latino immigrants are, in fact, hard working men and woman compelled to succeed by a profound sense of family.
"I am so proud of my parents," Ramos said. "They have suffered so much to bring me and my siblings here so we can have a better life. The children of undocumented immigrants are their parents’ retirement, so we know that we have to work hard. We know that we have to make a good living because we have to support our families — we have no other choice. And I see that hard work ethic in all of the people here, and all of our families and friends.”
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