Trump Derides Immigration From ‘Shithole’ Countries
Once again, President Trump opens his mouth and proceeds to insult a good part of the world while embarrassing the country.
Late yesterday, The Washington Post reported that President Trump responded to a proposed solution to the extension of the DACA program by making what can only be called a disparaging racist remark about immigrants from Africa and other parts of the world:
President Trump grew frustrated with lawmakers Thursday in the Oval Office when they discussed protecting immigrants from Haiti, El Salvador and African countries as part of a bipartisan immigration deal, according to several people briefed on the meeting.
“Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?” Trump said, according to these people, referring to countries mentioned by the lawmakers.
Trump then suggested that the United States should instead bring more people from countries such as Norway, whose prime minister he met with Wednesday. The president, according to a White House official, also suggested he would be open to more immigrants from Asian countries because he felt that they help the United States economically.
In addition, the president singled out Haiti, telling lawmakers that immigrants from that country must be left out of any deal, these people said.
“Why do we need more Haitians?” Trump said, according to people familiar with the meeting. ”Take them out.”In November, the Trump administration rescinded deportation protection granted to nearly 60,000 Haitians after the 2010 earthquake and told them to return home by July 2019.
Lawmakers were taken aback by the comments, according to people familiar with their reactions. Sens. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) and Richard J. Durbin (D-Ill.) had proposed cutting the visa lottery program by 50 percent and then prioritizing countries already in the system, a White House official said.
A White House spokesman defended Trump’s position on immigration without directly addressing his remarks. White House officials did not dispute the account.
“Certain Washington politicians choose to fight for foreign countries, but President Trump will always fight for the American people,” spokesman Raj Shah said in a statement issued after The Washington Post first reported Trump’s remarks. “. . . Like other nations that have merit-based immigration, President Trump is fighting for permanent solutions that make our country stronger by welcoming those who can contribute to our society, grow our economy and assimilate into our great nation.”
Trump built his candidacy and presidency around hard stances on immigration, vowing to build a wall along the Mexican border and cut legal immigration by half, among other positions. Officials at the Department of Homeland Security have increased immigration raids, including dozens this week at convenience stores across the country.
Trump’s comments Thursday also put further scrutiny on his long-standing tendency to make racially charged remarks — including attacks on protesting black athletes and his claim that there were fine people ”on both sides” after neo-Nazis rioted in Charlottesville, Va. Trump falsely claimed for years that Barack Obama was not born in the United States and took out advertisements calling for the death penalty for members of the Central Park Five — four black youths and a Hispanic youth who were accused of a brutal rape in New York and later exonerated.
The president’s remarks were quickly met with scorn from Democrats and some Republicans and could throw another wrench into bipartisan discussions on immigration, which had shown promise in recent days, according to legislators.
Rep. Luis Gutiérrez (D-Ill.) said the comments “will shake the confidence that people have” in the ongoing immigration policy talks.
“Democrats and Republicans in the Senate made a proposal. The answer is this racist outburst of the president. How can you take him seriously?” Gutiérrez said. “They [Republicans] don’t believe in immigration — it’s always been about people of color and keeping them out of this country.”
Rep. Cedric L. Richmond (D-La.), chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, said on Twitter that Trump’s remarks “are further proof that his Make America Great Again Agenda is really a Make America White Again agenda.”
Some Republicans also raised objections. Rep. Mia Love (R-Utah), whose family is from Haiti, said in a statement that Trump’s remarks were “unkind, divisive, elitist, and fly in the face of our nation’s values. This behavior is unacceptable from the leader of our nation.”
“My grandmother used to say, ’Digame con quién caminas, y te diré quién eres.’ ‘Tell me who you walk with, and I’ll tell you who you are,’ ” said Rep. Adriano Espaillat (D-N.Y.), who represents most of Harlem and is an immigrant from the Dominican Republic, which shares the island of Hispaniola with Haiti. “If he’s walking around with white supremacists and supporting them, this kind of talk doesn’t surprise me.”
The New York Times also reported last year that Trump said immigrants from Haiti have AIDS. The White House denied that report.
In its initial responses to the report of the President’s remarks last night, the White House did not deny that the President used the words he was reported to have used regarding immigrants from Africa and elsewhere. This morning in a series of tweets, though, President Trump did appear to deny that he had made the comments in question without directly addressing them notwithstanding the fact that the Post reporter who broke the story said that they stood by their reporting. Additionally, Illinois Senator Dick Durbin, who was one of the participants in the White House meeting at which the remarks were made, went on the record this morning to confirm that the President said what the Post reported and that the report was an accurate reflection of what the President said and that at least two people at the meeting, including both himself and Senator Lindsey Graham, spoke up against what the President had said to his face. So far, though, there’s been no comment from Senator Graham or any of the other participants in the meeting about yesterday’s report. Given Durbin’s confirmation, though, which we have no reason to disbelieve, it seems clear that the President did indeed say what has been attributed to him. On other fronts, some Republicans, such as Arizona Senator Jeff Flake, Utah Congresswoman Mia Love and Virginia Congresswoman Barbara Comstock, have issued statements condemning the President’s remarks.
There really is no way to tidy up what the President said here, Contrary to what the White House claims, this is not merely some commentary on so-called “chain migration” and a call for an immigration policy that emphasizes skills over family ties. That is a policy position that might at least arguably be defensible and worthy of being debated. What Trump said was simultaneously un-American and racist, and they deserve to be widely and proudly condemned by Republicans and Democrats alike. They are un-American because they go against everything that this country has stood for when it comes to immigration and what it means to be an American. Indeed, at one point or another pretty much everyone living in the United States can find someone in their family tree who came to this country from what was likely considered at the time to be a “shithole” country. This was true of Irish immigrants, and Italians, of the German immigrants that included Trump’s own family on his father’s side, and from people such as my Great Grandparents who came here from Eastern Europe in the 1870s and 1880s. They all came here for the same reason, to build a better life for themselves, their families, and for future generations. In many cases, these immigrants faced some of the same hostilities and attacks that immigrants face today. Just as is the case today, though, they persevered and have gone on to contribute to the country in immeasurably good ways. The fact that Trump attacked people who are coming to this country for basically the same reasons demonstrates how little he understands about American history and what it means to be an American, and how little he actually appreciates the nation that he purports to lead.
The racism apparent in the President’s remarks is also plain to see for all but the most deluded of his supporters. The fact that he singles out nations such as Africa and Haiti, and according to some reports El Salvador, as being “shithole” countries while bizarrely asking why we couldn’t bring in more immigrants from a country like Norway speaks for itself. It stands alongside other remarks he has made since he became a candidate about Mexicans, Muslims, and other persons of color, and the praise he has spoken for the “very fine people” who participated in a racist march in Charlottesville, Virginia that resulted in the death of a young woman at the hands of a white supremacist. From all of this one can only conclude that the President not only panders to racists but that he holds some of these same beliefs himself. Given his history, this doesn’t come entirely as a surprise, of course, but the fact that so many people seem willing to overlook it for political reasons is both surprising and dismaying. In normal times, comments like this would have been roundly condemned by people on both sides of the aisle. Instead, outside of a few notable exceptions, we are seeing people on the right who are actually defending the President’s remarks and acting as if they aren’t significant at all. These people are the ones who empower Trump and the base that energizes him, and unless and until they stop doing so they will continue to be part of the problem.
1) All of those of Irish, Italian, Jewish, and Mediterranean European descent should remember that this is exactly how our ancestors were labeled. Sh*thole people from sh*thole countries. As recently as 1979 there was a sign at the border of a town near the Appalachian trail describing the people who wouldn’t be allowed inside the city limits after dark. Catholics were on the list.
2) For those who defend Trump against charges of racism, well, Trump’s racist nature is a legal fact, not just an opinion. Early in his career it was revealed in court documents that Trump instructed rental agents at his properties to mark the applications of dark skinned people with a “C”, for colored, so they could be ignored.
3) The Republican Party is a racist party, by choice. Again, a fact, not an opinion. In the 1960’s party leaders explicitedly embraced the Southern Strategy, wherein they courted the racist Southerners who were becoming disenchanted with Democratic support of Civil Rights. Although many party leaders felt they could invite the racists in and give them just a pat on their head in exchange for their votes, no less a party leader than Senator Javits took to the NYTimes to beg them not to take that path, as it would rot the party from within like a cancer. It did.
I just saw this:
Trump and his guests better hope none of these Haitians work in the kitchen. I would be none to surprised to find out they were adding additional ingredients to the sauces…
It is fairly clear that Trump is speaking to that portion of the USA that yearns for a Great White America… specifically White.
There’s no denying the old-school casual racism – one doubts he has any reflexion at all in an ideological alt-right fashion, just 1950s racist Queens coming out in him. Simple minded lazy racism.
Congrats, you have essentially Archie Bunker the Vulgarian as your national leader.
It;s like every horrid stereotype of the USA come true.
The fact that a substantial number of Americans know nothing about Haiti and how it has been treated by the United States and France is a mark of the real ‘s—hole’ country.
I would say that one thing Trump has done is shown a lot of Americans just how terrible they look to other people.
Fun fact people are talking about: immigrants from Nigeria have one of the highest college graduation rates in the country. My experience is that people from s***hole countries often have a deeper and more profound appreciation of this country than people who were born here. If you’re willing to obey the law, work and become part of our culture, I don’t care where you’re from.
During the recent Bronx apartment fire, Private Emmanuel Mensah repeatedly went back into the burning building, saving four people before dying while attempting to save a fifth:
After Saving Many From Fire, Soldier Died Trying to Rescue One More
He immigrated from Ghana five years ago.
While I am glad that tv anchors like Don Lemon and Anderson Cooper and Jim Acosta are finally – FINALLY – labelling Trump a racist, I have to ask what took them so long.
This has never been a secret. Starting with the Equal Housing lawsuits, continuing with his full page ad calling for the death penalty for the (wrongly convicted) Central Park 5, birtherism, Mexicans are rapists, Mexican judge can’t be fair to me, Nazis are very fine people, etc. etc. The MSM tiptoeing around calling a racist a racist has only helped to normalize his behavior.
Yes. Anyone who has Jewish, Irish, Italian, Polish, Greek, Spanish, German, Portuguese, Russian, Finnish, Hungarian, Czechoslovakian, Yugoslavian, or Bulgarian ancestors would be well-advised to bear in mind that your forebears were once considered sub-humans from shitholes.
@Hal_10000: Very true. Massachusetts has a large population of Haitian immigrants, and across the board, unless they were elderly, every Haitian immigrant I knew when I lived there spoke English fluently and was enrolled in school within a year of arrival.
Did you know that Trump eats McDonald’s not just because he likes it but because he’s afraid of being poisoned, and he figures they can’t do that at McDonald’s because they don’t know it’s him for whom the order has been placed. Same with his buckets of KFC.
Having Trump saying explicitly what his Republican colleagues state in veiled terms all the time does mean we’ve reached a new low from that party. It just means it’s Friday.
Seriously, I no longer give a shi*thole what Trump most recently said. No amount of sunlight is going to embarrass him or cost him any standing with his sycophantic base. But, dammit, Trump needs to be hung around the neck of Lindsay Graham and every other Congressperson with an R behind their name. They need to be confronted their enabling every day until voters ultimately rise up and remove these scumbags from office.
Can’t believe the number of Trump supporters who think we’re worked up because he used a bad word.
Let’s remember the orthodoxy here:
1) The United States is a racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic nation currently being ruled by Nazis.
2) Other nations have wonderful and diverse cultures, but most of their problems are caused by the US influencing, dominating, exploiting, and otherwise abusing them.
3) Large numbers of these people who have been influenced/dominated/exploited/abused by the US want nothing more than to come to the US, and will do almost anything — including ignoring our laws, which are the most generous on earth regarding immigration — to get here.
4) Large numbers of people from these other nations who have come to the racist/sexist/homophobic/transphobic/xenophobic/Islamophobic nation and lived here for any length of time will do almost anything to remain here, and not return to their wonderful and delightful homelands.
5) The concept of “people vote with their feet” is racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic, insensitive to those without feet, and probably a few other things I’ve forgotten.
If only we had someone with a less constrained vocabulary in the Oval Office, such as Joe “big f’ing deal” Biden…
“Shit hole” is racist now?
This site is becoming a real shit hole.
And if those places AREN’T shit holes, why the frak are we taking people from these countries and granting them refugee status??
When Trump is caught calling the civil rights act the “nigger bill”, like Lyndon Johnson did, then we can talk.
Except there’s only so many McDonald’s in DC in range of the White House and the Secret Service ain’t exactly subtle when they roll up in a government SUV. If Trump thinks that terrorists wouldn’t think anything of poisoning EVERY burger out of a few restaurants in the hope they get him, he’s dumber then I thought. In fact ,wiping out a good portion of DC would be a bonus in their eyes. The chances of McDonald’s hiring a terrorist are far higher then the WH kitchen staff hiring one.
This is one of those paranoia things that only works if somebody’s not clever and ruthless enough to break the whole aisle’s worth of eggs.
When Trump is caught calling the civil rights act the “nagger bill”, like Lyndon Johnson did, then we can talk.
Yay, I win!
I made a bet with myself that Bob the J-e-n-o-s would have to show up for this, would not be able to stop himself because if there’s a racist to be defended or a dead black man to be gloated over, up he will pop, our own little Klan-In-The-Box.
@Bob The Arqubusier: click—your gone
Quote of the day: Before yesterday searching the internet for “Trump” and “shithole” returned only hotel reviews.
You seriously can’t tell the difference between what Biden said and what Trump said? As Trump would tweet: sad…
And yet you keep slithering in here to bathe in the muck…once again, sad…
Replace “Haiti” with “rural America” and you’ll see why people are pissed. Why are states taking in people moving from shitholes like Kentucky and West Virginia and letting them live there? They’ll just bring their shithole ways and culture with them! Why can’t they stay and fix up their shithole government and cities instead of leaving – after all, isn’t it their fault it’s a shithole in the first place!? Who says we want Georgians and their 3rd world poverty as citizens of a prosperous state?
If conservatives don’t like that logic, take it up with the President. There’s quite a few places in this country as bad as Haiti but god forbid you tell the locals ‘Muricans that. Trump’s getting called out because what he said is not only rude but hypocritical as well.
@KM: Good point. But putting aside terrorists, if the guys behind the counter have it figured the Big Mac is for the Prez, what do you think the odds are that they would Kizzy the secret sauce on his burger? I’m thinking pretty high…
The only thing I’ll give that man credit for is that antiqued profanity filters are slowly but surely dropping away in mainstream works. I’v always thought it silly for me to type *almost* the whole word when we all know that’s what’s being said. Think of all the profane words Trump has freed just by being his profane self! If nothing else, internet historians will note that #MAGA meant not having to type $&#*%*$ to get around the censors anymore.
As someone with with a bit of a potty mouth, my spellcheck thanks the President for no longer having to work hard at censoring my inner thoughts. It will be joining him on the golf course shortly.
@KM: Why are states taking in people moving from shitholes like Kentucky and West Virginia and letting them live there?
Because they’re Americans, you goob.
You might feel more affinity for Haitians or Libyans (OK, I’ll grant you that one, as it was Obama and Hillary who totally effed over their nation) or Palestinians or El Salvadorans or Turkmenis than Kentuckians or West Virginians, but you don’t speak for the nation.
A whole lot of us feel a lot more obligation to help out “refugees” from within the US (especially those fleeing California, New Jersey, Massachusetts, New York, Illinois, etc.) than those from other nations.
And it says something very special about people who actively hate their fellow citizens, and see them as a greater threat than wannabe terrorists from other nations. Something very special, indeed.
Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”
So the PEOPLE are refuse. #ButThatsOK
As a side note, immigration would actually be an interesting thing to discuss here. It is a complex issue. Unfortunately, it seems that, If we were just to judge by the comments section, we have people who are basically in favor of fairly extensive immigration vs. a few racists without much ability or imagination to argue facts.
But perhaps there is a wider diversity than that. I, for one, find many of the things “I just know” to be challenged by facts on the ground. For instance, my prejudice is that small town churches are likely to be racist, but whenever I read an article about say, a Somali community forming around a Midwestern meatpacking plant, a local white church usually plays a significant role in resettlement, at least in the initial stages.
I know this post is about Trump’s racism, but I encourage Doug or someone else to start a discussion post on immigration in general.
Also my Norwegian forbearers who Trump now singles out as desirables.
As others pointed out, Trump is pushing “skills based” immigration. Being Norwegian (or is it Normaynian?) is not a skill. Will the filter take me out for saying Trump’s mouth is a racist shithole?
Next thing on my list is to write a nasty email to the FNYT in response to this mornings column, no comments allowed, headlined Now is the Time to Say It: Trump is a Racist. ( I hope I’m quoting that right, on checking I see they changed it a few minutes ago. Perhaps they got to many responses like mine.) No, this is not the time. During the campaign was the time. Surely they could have sacrificed a few paragraphs of Hillary email or Clinton Foundation “coverage”.
Arsehole calls entire nations shitholes, I’m sure it’s just nine dimensional chess from our beloved leader! Was also looking forward to a little jaunt up to London next month for a one on one million, but the very stable genius now appears to be staying stateside until we can prepare the best red carpet ever (spoiler alert, he is less popular than herpes in the UK presently).
@TM01: “wretched refuse,” if you please. Not just “refuse,” but “wretched refuse.”
Wretched: “1. in poor or pitiful circumstances
2. characterized by or causing misery
3. despicable; base
4. poor, inferior, or paltry”
something that is discarded as worthless or useless; rubbish; trash; garbage.”
Gotta get the full piece in there…
Trump wasn’t just saying that the places they are coming from are sh*tholes. He was saying that therefore, we don’t want immigrants from those places here. If Trump had said, “Hey, their home countries are sh*tholes, so no wonder they want to come here. Welcome!” the sh*thole part still would have been offensive, but he wouldn’t have been insulting the people.
I see no one has given @TM01 a clear answer, so I will. It’s not that I object to calling Haiti a “shithole” per se, I think it is kind of a shithole at the moment. It’s that the president thinks that any person coming to the US from one of these countries is less worthy than someone coming from Norway, and of less value to us. He thinks that where someone comes from defines them and determines their worth.
That’s what makes it racist. Furthermore, it’s also just plain wrong on the facts, as Republican Congressperson Mia Love has pointed out, since her family comes from Haiti. You can’t choose the place you were born.
The US would be a better place with a lot more Norwegians.
Or Haitians. Or Africans. Or Salvadorans. And so on.
I heartily agree. Republican immigration policy is: “No Ni–ers.” But Democrats have remained vague aside from supporting DACA.
I have always believed that we have a perfect right to decide who immigrates. And that we have a perfect right to gear those policies first for the benefit of the American people, second for the benefit of the immigrants themselves. I have no issue with skills-based priorities.
I do have an issue with companies deliberately recruiting foreign workers as a way to keep wages down in the US. I think the wall is absurd and embarrassing to us as a country – though we’ve clearly already lost all sense of pride. I would like to see genuine workplace enforcement but of course hypocritical Republicans whose businesses rely on undocumented workers will of course object.
And I have a real issue with the idea that we are victimized by Mexico. The victimization has been all one-way: we have victimized Mexico by stealing half their country, launching cross-border raids with impunity, exploiting their cheap labor and creating a law and order crisis by burying the country in American drug money.
@Bob The Arqubusier:
I’m from one of the small town shitholes, buddy – I retain my S-word privileges. I’m 3rd generation immigrant from a (formerly considered) shithole nation on my mother side and bonafide DAR on my father’s. My family was here from the beginning and is one of the immigrant success stories that made our nation great.
I know first hand that all the nasty things Trump and Co say about immigrants apply to the jackass next door. Lazy, on the take, won’t assimilate to the greater American culture, disgusting personal habits, stuck in the superstitious ways, etc. I’d much prefer to hire someone who had the gumption to move thousands of miles for the chance at an opportunity then someone who’s sitting on the ass in a trailer park waiting for the mine to reopen. Nasty narrow-minded people who had the luck to be born American or they’d be that desperate soul trying to reach the Promised Land. They did nothing to deserve being American but falling out of the vagina onto the right soil. My fellow citizens are not just those of blood but those who want to be here, strive to reach our shores and thrive and genuinely bring something to the table other then “duuuhhhh but I was born here!!”
Conservatives would do well not to push for jus soli being revoked – if the current citizenship test was issued to all Americans, our population would drop drastically.
And neither do you, snowflake. It’s funny how people are so anti-immigrant until they see people they like rounded up, their pocketbooks affected by the sudden labor shortage and the prospect of having to work those low wage jobs just to live because someone more educated then them came to these shores and got snapped up immediately – then it’s a different tune.
Immigrants aren’t going away. They deserve the same chances in life everyone else has – that’s the essence of the American Dream. Nobody can become somebody. This nation was born with the idea that ANYONE can be an American since we are not an ethnicity but a nationality. How very unAmerican to try and change the Founder’s dream just because you don’t like the country of origin.
Why does Trump want people from the socialist wastelands?
The people from the shitholes aren’t expecting a welfare state or a social safety net, they are people who want to be able to find a job and work and make a life for themselves.
@MarkedMan: Can you start with a basic assumption that there is a substantial difference between legal immigrants and illegal immigrants, and it is dishonest to conflate the two?
From there, I would suggest that being anti-illegal immigrant is in no way anti-immigrant, unless you also want to argue that being anti-rape is being anti-sex.
I am extremely pro-legal-immigrant. They are paying our nation a tremendous honor, giving up their homeland and coming to join us, and extending their admiration and respect for us by doing it in accordance with our customs and laws. Sometimes I find myself a little envious of the legal immigrants, as they have an appreciation for our nation that comes from a perspective that I can never fully share. I’m an American because I’m an American, and I love my nation — but I’ve never known anything else. My citizenship was a gift that I had no say in earning. But the immigrants… they made the choice.
I once had a girlfriend who was adopted. When taunted about how her parents weren’t her “real” parents, she had a devastating comeback — “my parents CHOSE me, they PICKED me over a bunch of other kids. For all you know, you were an accident they got stuck with.”
As someone who was just such an “oops baby,” I had to respect that. However, I still occasionally teased her about her adoptive status — precisely because I knew she was in no way insecure about it, and she always had a good comeback. (I once asked her parents if they’d saved the receipt so they could return her, and she came back that she had it — and it was framed.)
So, in brief, if you want to have an honest discussion on “immigration” that draws no distinction between legal and illegal immigration, you’ve already ruined it.
@Jay Gischer: Beat you to it. 🙂
And when the child said “The emperor is naked!” the emperor faced him and said:
“How dare you, impudent twerp?” His orange face glowed. “Enemy of the empire’s people!”
“Yeah” someone yelled from the crowd. “He’s wearing ten-dimensional clothes, you lefty piece of crap!”
“I am more dressed without clothes,” the emperor said. “I am like, so dressy. A stable fashion plate! Your lies are fake news. You think because you see my skin I’m not wearing any clothes! Sad!!”
The emperor continued his procession, his left hand reaching for a non-existent pocket where he kept his phone. Damn! he had to go on Tweeter before his rage cooled.
The empress hoped sun burn on the imperial penis would guarantee a few restful nights. Stupid kid pointing out the obvious!
@TM01: It’s adorable that you pretend to be unable to see the difference in these situations.
@KM: Here’s one very basic question I can’t ever seem to get a straight answer to: do you see any distinction between legal immigrants and illegal immigrants?
Because most of the people who rant about “immigrants” without drawing the distinction don’t seem to realize that they’re pissing all over the people who have taken the time and effort and trouble to respect our laws and come here legitimately by granting special privileges to the line-cutters who decide that they don’t need to follow the rules so many others do.
@michael reynolds :
But isn’t that the problem lately with visa? If you bring people with skills, they can potentially replace Americans with those same skills. Those Americans then take jobs lower in the socio-economic ladder, thus displacing those who can’t reach any higher due to their own limitations. The ripple spreads downwards and suddenly you have adults with Masters degrees working in McDonald’s or as admins so the folks for who that was the best they were going to get are now out in the cold. The IT guy with the high salary, replaced by an immigrant for a 3rd of the price, now takes the blue-collar job of the kid who didn’t graduate from HS.
It’s nice to say skill-based should be the basis but all you are doing is moving the problem up the ladder and starting to take out the middle class and professionals instead of the working class laborers.
@TM01: @Bob The Arqubusier:
Do you idiots really not understand metaphor?
Also, stop trying to co-opt that poem to defend your racist President. It means the exact opposite of what he, and you, represent.
@Bob The Arqubusier: Do you realize that the people in question when Trump made the comment were refugees with protected status, and therefore legal?
@Mikey: Because Trump obviously meant “shithole” literally, and not metaphorically — as in, actual voids in the ground filled with feces. All they need to fix themselves up is a bunch of good plumbers.
But if these places aren’t so horrendous, why are so many of their people doing everything they can to get away from there as refugees?
Finally, a poem by a 19th century poet about a statue made in France has no legal standing — just thought you ought to know that. It seems a lot of people want to use it to argue against the validity of various and sundry immigration laws, and that’s kind of a silly tactic.
I doubt the average Norwegian would want to move here and suffer the decrease in salary, health care, education, and general quality-of-life issues.
According to the WHO, the average Norwegian lives 2.5 years longer than the average american.
@Bob The Arqubusier: I know what Trump meant, because unlike you I understand metaphor.
And I’m not trying to assert the poem has “legal standing.” But it does have standing as an expression of America’s origin and ideals, neither of which you Trumpist fools give a shit about when it comes to brown people.
@Bob The Arqubusier :
Yes. Do you? Trump clearly didn’t.
You see, “refugee” *IS* an acceptable legal status. They didn’t cut the line, they took the express lane that was built in by law. They didn’t cheat. Refugees do not have years to wait to get in, there’s an immediate need. Once they are here, they still have wait years and have extra restrictions that someone leisurely applying from doesn’t. I have a lawyer friend who does pro bono work at the local refugee center. I’ve seen the paper work tangle and I’ve seen the tears of people who are trying their best to do the right and legal thing against a system that wants them gone. They are genuinely afraid for the lives they’ve built here because the President *won’t* make a distinction between legal and illegal in his rage tweets.
Trump was explicitly referring to people who came here under humanitarian concerns and why we shouldn’t take them because the country they came from sucked. He was wrong, wrong WRONG and it’s freaking amazing how you’re trying to defend a man picking on people who escaped a natural disaster. Haitians aren’t running across the border willy-nilly so why in the world did he single them out?
@Monala: 1) There is some dispute about just what people were being discussed when the term was allegedly used.
2) Much like DACA and the El Salvador refugees, their status is and always has been “temporary.” Much of the fighting of late has been from the left insisting that “temporary” actually means “permanent.”
3) Even in the context you seem to be referring to, it appears that the subject was about accepting more refugees — and their status isn’t “legal.”
Oh, I think we all know why.
@Mikey: First up, you better stick to this site. There are some forums where personal attacks are actually prohibited. Lucky for you this one is extremely tolerant of that sort of thing.
Second, why does it always take someone bringing up the subject of legal immigrants to get the “pro-immigration” side to even acknowledge that they exist?
The vast majority of things labeled “anti-immigrant” have absolutely no ill effects on legal immigrants, and some actually benefit the legal immigrant community. So you wanna knock it off and start practicing a little of the “honesty” you demand so loudly?
In 1995, Robert Novak was interviewing Jesse Helms, they took a call, and the following remarkable exchange occurred:
Notice that neither Novak nor Helms seemed to get what was so offensive about the caller’s remarks. They focused entirely on the caller’s use of the N-word and not on the racist message he expressed. I get the strange feeling Helms would not have received a spanking for expressing the desire to “keep down the blacks.”
This is about the level that the right understands most racial controversies. It’s the same standard that gets them to place Harry Reid’s unfortunately phrased remark about Obama’s lack of a “Negro dialect” in the same category as Trent Lott’s words of praise for Strom Thurmond’s 1948 segregationist campaign. To the right, the problem isn’t the substance of people’s remarks, it isn’t the underlying meaning of what anyone is saying. No, the only problem is in speaking “bad words” that cause mommy to wash their mouths out with soap.
@Kylopod: It’s like the frequent comments by rightwingers condemning Democrats for accepting Robert Byrd, even though he had repudiated his KKK past and atoned for it over decades.
Trump is a constant outrage machine. He’s forcing journalists to make choices about whether to focus on more important stuff or cover each daily outrage. As a matter of journalism, it doesn’t accomplish much to report in detail on just how Trump said something outrageous. Again. Today. And it tends to normalize this stuff.
Nor is it good politics. The Republican base sees it as another elitist attack on their boy, and by extension on them. I’d like to see a change of approach. Outrage gets tiresome, humor is fun. Let’s not focus on how racist, ignorant, stupid each comment is.Let’s point and laugh, go for more of a look at what what our accidental prez said today. He thinks Norwegians are lining up to move here, that’s hilarious.
In 2016 1.18 million people became green card residents of the US, 362 were born in Norway. Being ranked as the world’s happiest country may have something to do with it. – https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2018/01/trump-shithole-norway/550382/
@Kylopod: Jesse Helms: Out of office 2003, died 2008.
Joe Biden: “”I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. I mean, that’s a storybook, man.”
Joe Biden: “You cannot go to a 7-11 or a Dunkin’ Donuts unless you have a slight Indian accent…. I’m not joking.”
@Bob The Arqubusier:
Well, I married one, so I’m quite well-aware of their existence.
And she’s as hard-over against Trump on this as I am.
Also, this isn’t all about immigration. The President is a racist, the immigration issue is just where that racism manifested itself yesterday.
@Mikey: “Some of my best friends are legal immigrants! I even married one!”
That’s a novel argument if I ever heard one…
So, why did she bother coming here legally? Why didn’t she just jump the line like so many others? You’d have had her back, I’m sure…
@gVOR08: Thanks for posting this. Most interesting is that during the height of Norwegian immigration to the U.S. (late 1800s to early 1900s), Norway was considered a sh*thole. A few years ago, I had the opportunity to re-read Willa Cather’s 1918 novel My Antonia, which I had first read for English class in high school. I was surprised to see that not only was Antonia’s Eastern European immigrant family the subject of discrimination, but so were her friends who had immigrated from Norway and Sweden. (I wasn’t quite aware of this enough to pick up on it in high school)
@Monala: Thank you!
I’m surprised we’re 57 comments in and no one has noted the irony of, Raj Shah, whose parents immigrated from Mumbai–surely, a shithole by this standard—having to defend these comments.
If the OTB air burns your lungs, feel free to go find a stuffiness more to your liking.
@Monala: The article I pulled up for the current immigration number mentioned that, partly because of discrimination, 2/3 of the Scandinavian immigrants went back.
My brother was a Lutheran pastor in rural Minnesota. He served half a dozen congregations. He described this as a legacy of the nature of the migration. A group of people, with their pastor, would come over together, take adjacent homesteads, and build a church. The next year, another group, perhaps from the adjacent county in Norway, would come over with their pastor, homestead the next available plots, and set up their own Lutheran church twenty miles down the road. IIRC well into the 20th Century a girl would be disowned for marrying a boy from a neighboring Lutheran church. One of his accomplishments was getting two of the congregations to merge. It’s also why the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America is the product of a string of mergers. And a few schisms.
@Scott F.:..Trump needs to be hung around the neck of Lindsay Graham and every other Congressperson with an R behind their name.
Yes and the REPUBLICANS in Congress should all hang together in their efforts to rid this country of REPUBLICAN President Donald Trump.
@James Joyner: One of the mysteries of life is how easy it is to get someone to believe they are in the “in group”. I wouldn’t be surprised if Mr. Shah thought he was excluded from Trump’s racist musings because… because something. Our ability to believe that WE are accepted on our merits is truly wondrous, if not based in reality. For example, when I was a boy living in a very segregated, south side Chicago neighborhood, an Indian doctor and family moved in. Perhaps they thought the working class homeowners there would be happy that they were classing up the neighborhood with their high income and medical degree. In reality they were panicked that a black family was there. No matter that they were Indian. No matter that they were better educated than anyone else. No matter that they were wealthier than 99%. Their skin was the the wrong color.
I sometimes say that I grew up in an extremely diverse neighborhood. We had Irish Catholics, Italian Catholics and Polish Catholics (with a few Greek Orthodox thrown in). Even at a young age the irony of how this neighborhood treated minorities was not lost on me. It was full of people from some of the most denigrated and abused ‘races’ a couple of generations prior. At the turn of the twentieth century the demand for “NINA” (No Irish Need Apply) placards was high enough you could buy them preprinted from your local office supplies store and use that marvelous new cellophane tape to post them on your factory door. Yet 75 years later my neighbors were oblivious to this and more than willing to stick it to the next guy.
It was at this time I developed one of my sadder observations on life. If getting screwed made a person less likely to screw the next guy, we would have had peace on earth 10,000 years ago. Instead, it makes us more likely to look around for someone else to sh*t on, so we have the world as it is.
Raj Shah didn’t HAVE to defend Trump’s comment. He chose to. If he had any self-respect, he would have quit over this affront.
But, “self-respect” and “White House spokesman” don’t belong in the same sentence these days.
@MarkedMan:..makes us more likely to look around for someone else to sh*t on, so we have the world as it is.
Perhaps no one is surprised by this irony as Republicans have shown they have no problems with having token members of minority groups that they don’t like…
To the defenders of Trump, if you can’t see that the POTUS cannot possibly be right in using the term “shithole country” when discussing immigration you are either lying or you are dense. The POTUS is not Joe down at the corner bar. What he says matters, and while you may not do nuance, the rest of the world does. Are allies no longer can trust us, and realize that Trump’s word is meaningless, and our enemies are happy as hell Trump is in charge.
But defending the shithole term? I honestly thought that even his defenders here wouldn’t go there. But like Trump himself there is no bottom for you guys.
Interesting that Trump didn’t walk back–or try, feebly, to do so–his shithole comment until his friends on Fox and Friends told him to do so.
Brian Kilmeade says at 7:06 a.m. that Trump made a mistake.
At 7:28 a.m., Trump Tweets that he didn’t use the word “shithole.”
Pure coincidence? I report; you decide.
Is Obama racist for calling Libya a shit show?
Or are all of you just a bunch of…shits?
Dude, if you’re trying to look dumb, it’s working.
*sigh* The stupid, it burns….
Shitshow: a situation or event marked by chaos or controversy.
shithole: an extremely dirty, shabby, or otherwise unpleasant place.
Everyone involved in the crisis in Libya would agree it was a shitshow, especially the poor civilians who suffered through it. Most people would be offended if you called their home a shithole, regardless of how they personally feel about it.
God, no wonder why Trump loves voters like you. You share the same brain cell.
@TM01: Do you not know the difference between a shit show and a shit hole? Or are you just trying to sound stupid?
@KM: FWIW, for most of us calling Haiti a shot show is only mikdly offensive. The offensive thing is that Trump is a no class racist thug and an embarrassment to this country.
“The fact that they issued a response without denying the comments themselves indicates these were the actual words that Trump used.
This is encouraging and refreshing, as it indicates Trump is more or less on the same page as us with regards to race and immigration.”
andrew anglin, Daily Stormer, 1/12/18
Dems should not for a moment think that simply because most decent people are disgusted by Trump they will win. The message the Dems should be repeating over, and over, and over again is that the Republicans just want to take us backwards to refight the same old fights our parents fought. It gets us nothing but a lot of people yelling at each other. Dems want to build new things, fix up the old ones, bring us roads and parks and buildings we can be proud of. The Republicans just want to throw a blue tarp on the leaky roofs and piss and moan about the old days. The Dems need to talk about bringing a good education to all kids, especially the ones who have been looked down on, and that applies to poor white kids as well as poor black kids. They need to talk about how no one should have a handout but everyone should have a fair shake. In the 30’s the government committed to electrifying everywhere even the most rural areas, and the Dems should commit to bring internet and package delivery to the modern equivalents. And they should contrast themselves with the bitter, cynical Republicans begging for handouts from big business.
The Repubs are race riots in the street, pushing the weak and old out of the lifeboat, resigning ourselves to crumbling roads, dirty air and China beating us to the next big thing. The Dems are about building the physical infrastructure and investing in the human capital necessary for everyone to get ahead. That’sthe Message we need.
Well, this is the same person who tried to use “The New Colossus” to justify Trump’s words…it’s not about sounding stupid, rather, it’s about being stupid…
i agree. But on the positive side, Paul Ryan just announced that because of how much people hate the GOP after the past year, they’re not even going to try to cut Trump voters’ SS disability and Rascal Scooters this year. They know they’re going to be thrown out with great force as it is, they don’t want to press their agenda and go the way of the Whigs.
@KM: I tend to agree, but why make the remark about trailer parks? Some people who live in mobile homes are poor and that is not a crime. It does not mean they are bigots or narrow minded or waiting for the mine to reopen. In fact, I know coal miners who live in really nice houses and I know older people who worked hard all their lives who live in mobile homes. It is a small thing, but it is indicative of the kind of social bigotry we see on both sides of the aisle.
Having said that Trump is a racist. No doubt about it.
test@Bob The Arqubusier:
Legal immigrants are generally White and Middle Class people that managed to marry an American or are people that have a lot of money, basically because these are the two options for people that want to immigrate legally to the United States. Illegal immigrants are generally either South Asian or dark skinned people from Latin America, because White and Middle Class people are not willing to live as undocumented worker in the US.
In describing Caracas, I have also used, in the past, the adjective “shithole”.
I was talking about the City, not the people, but the broad brush paints it the same.
In short: I can’t throw the first stone.
I hate when my Ugly Americanism gets pointed out.
@Monala: Yeah, but what would the point be if Trump wasn’t insulting the people, too? He who shall not be named, tm, Bunge, and the boys need the validation that they’re better and more deserving than the people from the shirthole countries to have any self-image at all. It’s really sad when you think about it. Pathetic and low-energy, too. Bigly so.
While I’m here, is it just my imagination or is Trump not recently shaven in that picture?
@gVOR08: Even at the time of the merger (I had just adopted the Lutheran faith at the time), the people in my congregation were talking about which synods were Norwegian, Swedish, Finnish, and German and wondering how people would all get along.
No i think he probly shaved. He has a little bit of stubble, but I have more by the end of the day.
Wow! (Hat Tip to Betty Cracker at Balloon Juice) How the world turns…from the very respectable political party of Eisenhower to the extremely shithole political party of Trump…
Actually, it was a description from the trenches. I spent this past New Year’s in a very nice mobile home in a very poor part of a rundown county because some good friends haven’t seen in years called me back on home. Good people who’ve worked hard all their lives and never seemed to get the financial rewards they deserved. They’re happy there and won’t take any help to get out of a dying town because that’s the home they’ve come to love. I’ve learned that’s not the hill I want to die on.
They were the only highlight of a very depressing evening. My first few glasses of wine were spent trying to convince someone crying that raising the minimum wage means McD’s workers make more then her to go back and learn some useful skill for job hunting. Turns out she doesn’t feel she needs to learn anything because Trump’s gonna kick all the Mexicans out and then she can finally get a secretary’s job -all they do is answer phones! Another couldn’t get a job due to alcohol and meth issues and at least 3 able-bodied people were on the draw instead of working “n*gger jobs for peanuts”. So much wasted potential, sitting there waiting to be saved instead of trying to save themselves.
I’ve got nothing against people who live in mobile homes because it’s the best option available to them. I have a definite problem with people who perpetuate the trailer trash stereotype. It’s a toxic culture that simply must go and unfortunately happens to reside in double-wides.
Neo-Nazis celebrate Trump ‘s—hole’ comment: He’s ‘on the same page as us’
Donald J. Trump has revealed himself to be a bigot by both his behavior over the years and by the words out of his mouth. People who still support him after this fact became obvious are also bigots. People who try to claim that the facts aren’t what they clearly are are stupid as well as being bigots.
Gosh, just scanned ninety two comments. (Just back from a hike. Highly recommend 3-4 days sans news & noise!) Couple of thoughts – as if everyone has been on the edge of their chairs, eh? But anyhow:
The trolls gave up early, seems to me, when no one bought that there was any debate to be had in purposeful BS like legal/illegal and the words of a 19th century poem. They had no material to work with on the merits of the case of course. So, unfed, they became Casper the Ghost.
And, it hasn’t been much specifically emphasized that the President and those Senators were in the meeting MAKING LAWS. They were putting racist thinking into actual frigging United States Code.
I dunno about you but in a way it’s like one could feel the fingers of a very scary future trying the doorknob from the other side.
Late to the party.
Somebody has probably already pointed this out, but racism is as American as apple pie. We have been trying to kill this beast for decades now but it has zombified.
I have two relatives who have lived in France for 30 years. Each is married to a non-American, have modest middle class jobs, and raised children over there. AND both of them would be foolish to move back to the United States, their standard and quality of life would be diminished by nearly any measure (with the notable exception that they could probably have bigger houses and bigger cars over here in America.)
What’s funny about this is that the places where most Trumpaloons live would be ‘shitholes’ to many Democratic voters. Alabama? West Virginia? Louisiana? I could move to any of those three and live like a God compared to what it costs me to stay in California. But of course I won’t do that because they’re shitholes.
See, that’s the thing with shitholes – it’s all relative. There was a time in my life when I moved from sleeping under bridges to a roach-infested efficiency apartment. The apartment was a shithole by my current standards, but it was Rivendell at that point in my life.
I have news for Trump supporters: when Trump derides shitholes he’s not just being a flagrant racist, he’s also a classist, a snob who would describe the home you busted a gut to be able to afford as a shithole. He was born rich, grew up rich, and never did an honest day’s work in his life. He wouldn’t step foot in most of your trailers. Trump would Purell the hell out of himself if he ever had to step foot in your home. Your only saving grace in Trump’s eyes is the color of your skin. To Trump that’s all you are, a loser with a lack of melanin. You’re just a stooge, a mark, a sucker. His real friends are white winners, not white losers. And that’s the guy you worship.
OTOH, I found this… “‘Shithole’ is a perfectly good rude, slangy word. It has a great history, and it’s vivid and effective. It is not a racial term, and shame on the people who are making it racist. I wonder if these people ever think of the pain and damage they are causing by proclaiming and insisting upon a connection between dark skin and excrement. They’re revealing what’s in their head, and they don’t mind burdening dark-skinned people with the knowledge that they are being thought about like that.”
@John430: Nobody is saying the word “shithole” is racist, nobody is asserting a connection between excrement and dark skin, and whoever wrote that is trying to build a strawman.
Jesus, another fool who is either being disingenuous or an idiot, or both…let me explain it to you slowly, so that you may understand…the word itself isn’t the whole point…the racism comes from the particular locations that were described as “shitholes”….do you see how easy that was? Pass it on, if you can…
Don’t be that party. Don’t be that country.
…the word itself isn’t the whole point…the racism comes from the particular locations that were described as “shitholes”….
Trump’s desire for citizens of Norway (white people) to immigrate to the United States but not people from Haiti or Africa Shitholes is very clearly based on race.
…’no thanks’ – Norwegians reject Trump’s immigration offer
No, shame on the people who are defending Trump on this….if they had any shame.
We finally have your businessman in office, and he’s, on his best days, unpolished and unprofessional.
@James Pearce: This is what happens when too many people can’t see the difference between a conman and a businessman. Not that I buy into the whole “businessman would run the country like a business!!” nonsense, but someone like Bloomberg would have likely been worlds better than Trump.
@An Interested Party: On the other hand (and I don’t disagree with him) if William Saletan’s idea of “decent conservatives” includes Paul Ryan, he needs to adjust his decency compass.
Wow, you really missed on that one.
No one is making the term s***hole a racist term.
Context matters, right?