Baseball legend David “Big Papi” Ortiz is hanging up his cleats for the last time – and has some choice words for the Republican nominee, Donald Trump as he exits the limelight. Oritz was born in the Dominican Republic and has played in the major leagues for over twenty years, maintaining an “elite level of production — with an on-base-plus-slugging percentage of 1.033, highest in the majors.”
As an extremely successful immigrant and beloved member of American sports culture, Ortiz is perfectly qualified to respond to Trump’s racist rhetoric about Hispanic immigrants and his blatantly ethnonationalist scapegoating of minorities. In an interview with USA Today Sports, Ortiz ripped Trump for his discriminatory ideas:
“When you speak like that about [Latinos], it’s a slap in the face. I walk around sometimes, and I see Mexican people trying to earn a living in an honest way. And to hear somebody make those kinds of comments, it hits you. I think as Latin people we deserve better. Things have gotten much better in that regard. … As Latin people we deserve respect, no matter where you’re from. And especially our Mexican brothers, who come here willing to do all the dirty work.
Latin people here in the United States are the spark plug of the country’s economy. Whoever opposes that is going to lose. And not just Latin people but immigrants. I’m talking about people who come from Africa, from Asia, other places. All those people come here with one goal, to realize the American dream, and you have to include them in our group.”
Donald Trump opened his campaign by accusing Mexicans of being “rapists, drug dealers, and criminals” before going on to centering his entire platform around the absurd idea that he will force Mexico to pay for a border wall, ostensibly to cut down on illegal immigration, which happens to be at an all-time low. He promises mass deportations, banning all Muslims from entering the United States, and openly consorts with white supremacists while providing no substantial ideas on how he would actually run this country.
His candidacy is the American Nightmare incarnate, the antithesis of everything our nation ever stood for. As Trump toys with the same fascist energies that our grandfathers fought and died to defeat in the Second World War while having the nerve to insult the Muslim families of modern war heroes, our nation must unite behind Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and send Trump – and the world – a clear message that says the United States will not tolerate this kind of horrific racism.
Opinion columnist and former editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.