“When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people. I would build a great wall, and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me, and I’ll build them very inexpensively, I will build a great, great wall on our southern border. And I will have Mexico pay for that wall. Mark my words.” Two weeks ago, Donald Trump said those words during his official announcement that he was entering the 2016 presidential race as a Republican candidate. He didn’t know it at the time, but the self-described “master of the deal” would soon become a big deal for losing several financial deals for himself and his brand. I seriously considered titling this op-ed piece “Dumpster Fire” – but I think I’ll call it “the Great Trump Dump” instead. Same difference.
As you might imagine, reactions to Trump’s comments about Mexico and the Mexican people were as robust as they were passionate. In Mexico, verbal rebukes to/for Donald Trump have become a national pastime surpassed only by soccer. However, Trump’s words are haunting him – here and there.
Last weekend, Univision – America’s largest Spanish language network severed its five-year contract with Trump to broadcast the “Miss USA Pageant,” and the “Miss Universe Pageant” after only five months. Univision’s statement read in part: “We see first-hand the work ethic, love for family, strong religious values and the important role Mexican immigrants and Mexican-Americans have had and will continue to have in building the future of our country. We will not be airing the Miss USA pageant on July 12th or working on any other projects tied to the Trump Organization.” Trump responded by suing Univision for $500 million for breach of contract.
On Monday, NBC/Universal – under intense pressure from several Hispanic groups and organizations – told “the Donald” that he was fired. NBC/Universal’s official statement said: “At NBC, respect and dignity for all people are cornerstones of our values. Due to the recent derogatory statements by Donald Trump regarding immigrants, NBC/Universal is ending its business relationship with Mr. Trump. To that end, the annual Miss USA and Miss Universe Pageants, which are part of a joint venture between NBC and Trump, will no longer air on NBC. In addition, as Mr. Trump has already indicated, he will not be participating in ‘The Apprentice’ on NBC.” Trump responded by saying that the only way he would accept the parting of ways between himself and NBC was if he was the one who ended the business relationship. He also hinted that he may sue NBC.
On June 29th, the Mexican network, Televisa, dropped Donald Trump like a boss. This was its parting shot: “Mr. Trump hasn’t demonstrated understanding or respect toward Mexican migrants and has offended the entire Mexican population. Televisa isn’t indifferent to these declarations and energetically condemns all forms of discrimination, racism and xenophobia.”
But Trump’s going-out-of-business blowout sale continued.
On July 1st, the Macy’s Department Store chain dumped Trump, too. Macy’s commented: “We are disappointed and distressed by recent remarks about immigrants from Mexico. We do not believe the disparaging characterizations portray an accurate picture of the many Mexicans, Mexican Americans, and Latinos who have made so many valuable contributions to the success of our nation. In light of statements made by Donald Trump, which are inconsistent with Macy’s values, we have decided to discontinue our business relationship with Mr. Trump and will phase-out the Trump menswear collection, which has been sold at Macy’s since 2004.” Trump’s rebuttal? “I have decided to terminate my relationship with Macy’s because of the pressure being put on them by outside sources,” he said. Whatever, man.
July 1st also saw this statement released from New York City Mayor, Bill De Blasio: “We are reviewing Trump contracts with the City. Donald Trump’s remarks were disgusting and offensive, and this hateful language has no place in our city. Our Mexican brothers and sisters make up an essential part of this city’s vibrant and diverse community, and we will continue to celebrate and support New Yorkers of every background.” That’s trouble in capital letters.
Did I mention that Ora – a TV network owned by Mexico’s richest man, Carlos Slim – described Trump’s comments as “racist”? Ora deemed it necessary to drop Donald Trump like a bad habit.
Donald Trump is currently second of all the Republican presidential candidates for 2016, behind only Jeb Bush. Trump’s poll numbers are actually growing. This, of course, is a time bomb for the GOP. Even billionaire foot-in-mouth buffoonery has repercussions.
Real talk: if the Republican Party cannot convince at least 35% of Hispanic Americans to vote its way in 2016, it’s over. Checkmate. Turn out the lights. Good night. Donald Trump – in his own initimable way – has offended the most vitally important demographic block of voters. Every brusque comment he makes about Mexicans, the worse the electoral math looks for him in particular – and for the GOP in general. Straight talk? Try straight mess. The very traits propelling his popularity are the very traits which doom his candidacy. He’s a parody, not a politico.
Trump knows he cannot be the next American president, yet he seems content denying the Republican base the Oval Office. I don’t even think he even wants to win. Trump just wants to run. He wants the notoriety. Face it, we’ve talked about Trump more in the last two weeks than in the last several years combined. In his mind, that makes him legendary. To him, he’s already won.
Only the man known as “the Donald” could have his presidential candidacy severely damage his reputation as a businessman and a trendsetter.
In closing, the Grand Old Party should dump Trump, not pump Trump. In the meantime, his dumpster fire rages on. Happy 4th of July, people.