On July 14, President Trump tweeted some racist remarks against four congresswomen. He tweeted, “Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.” His series of tweets sparked a storm of criticism as many people across the country condemned his remarks. Although he didn’t name anyone in the tweets, it was obvious that they were aimed at the four freshman congresswomen known as “The Squad.”
The four congresswomen that are part of “The Squad” are Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY), Ilhan Omar (MN), Rashida Tlaib (MI), and Ayanna Pressley (MA). These four women are all relatively young, left-wing, women of color, and have come in dispute with the leadership of the House of Representatives.
On July 15, the four Congresswomen held a press conference to address the comments made by Trump. Congresswoman Omar stated, “He would love nothing more than to divide our country based on race, religion, gender, orientation or immigration status, because this is the only way he knows he can prevent the solidarity of us working together.”
On July 16, the Democrats in the House responded to Trump’s attacks by passing a House resolution condemning his racist tweets. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, “There’s no excuse for any response to those words but a swift and strong, unified condemnation.” She further added, “Every single member of this institution, Democratic and Republican, should join us in condemning the president’s racist tweets.” The measure passed 240-187. Only four Republicans crossed party lines to vote with the Democrats.
According to the New York Times, the measure states that the House “believes that immigrants and their descendants have made America stronger,” and that “those who take the oath of citizenship are every bit as American as those whose families have lived in the United States for many generations.”
Before the voting, Trump asked Republicans in the House not to vote for the measure by tweeting, “Those Tweets were NOT Racist, I don’t have a Racist bone in my body! The so-called vote to be taken is a Democrat con game. Republicans should not show ‘weakness’ and fall into their trap.” Trump believes that these four congresswomen hate our country as he tweeted, “This should be a vote on the filthy language, statements and lies told by the Democrat Congresswomen, who I truly believe, based on their actions, hate our Country.”
Emory University student Justin Kim has said, “Trump’s comments towards the congresswomen show just how low the office of the President has reached. His behavior is truly appalling as it shows not only racism but also encourages a racist climate in America today: his actions encourage “closet” racists to act out.” He further added, “The scary aspect of Trump’s outburst is that it is being normalized and just passed off as being insignificant by conservatives in the media and government. They should unequivocally rebuke Trump and show that America is greater than what Trump represents.”
As Trump continues to divide the country with hate and racism, we can only hope that the people of America will continue to remain united against division.
Jennie Kim, Grade 12
Immaculate Heart High School