Since his inauguration, U.S. President Donald J. Trump has followed the most dangerous scripts of nationalistic and xenophobic governance, whipping up a frenzy of inchoate fears and hatred among his supporters. His anti-Latinx rhetoric of demonization of Latinos has come to exemplify these tendencies: U.S. citizens have been described as “under attack” by Latinx and Latin American “illegals,” “drug dealers,” “rapists,” and “parasites.” A “big, beautiful wall” erected across the U.S.-Mexico border would keep out “infestations” of migrant “animals,” “gang-members,” and “bad hombres” from “shithole countries.” President Trump’s philosophy of government demonizes and disproportionately impacts Latin American and Latinx peoples living in the United States. To date, thousands of migrant families and children have been rounded up, separated, and caged indefinitely.
As executive board members of the Society for Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology (SLACA) and regional experts within the American Anthropological Association, we express our outrage over the growth and influence of such dehumanizing language and the policies it serves. Although it is easy to decry President Trump’s public rhetoric against Latin American refugees as race-baiting, its recent amplification is stimulating what can only be described as potential crimes against humanity. And we have seen this kind of racial demonization and divestiture of citizens’ rights before—during the twentieth-century rise of European fascist and totalitarian states.
We as members of SLACA unequivocally reject the president and administration’s nativist rhetoric and policies to stand in justice and solidarity with Latin American and Latinx individuals across the United States.
For a longer statement from SLACA, see http://slaca.americananthro.org/section-news-and-archives/statement-and-letter-archive/
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