An open letter to President Trump

Updated: Sep 25, 2019

Dear Mr. President:

Since the start of your Administration, El Paso has been ground zero for many of the cruel immigration-related policies enacted by you in your efforts to punish, demonize and terrorize immigrants and immigrant communities. From family separation to large-scale child detention to the Remain in Mexico policy, El Paso has been witness to your Administration’s repeated failure to properly address the humanitarian crisis leading to the influx of Central American asylum-seekers. In the face of your Administration’s cruelty, however, the El Paso community has shown the rest of the country the importance of coming together to provide for those that are most in need, that our diversity is our strength, and that by recognizing the contributions of immigrants to our community, we honor our history as a nation of immigrants.

Even while the outpouring of compassion demonstrated by the people of El Paso has served as an example to the rest of the country, you continue to choose to use racially-charged language in order to incite fear and suspicion of immigrants, to promote violence against people of color, and to condone white supremacist ideology. Your very deliberate decision to use such language has very real consequences, as demonstrated by the horrific act of domestic terrorism committed against the El Paso community just two days ago. A hate-filled white supremacist that used much of the same language that you regularly use when describing immigrants and communities of color traveled to our city with the specific intent of killing as many of us as possible. Even though you have since declared that such hatred has no place in America, your words will ring hollow until you no longer choose to use language that incites and encourages such hatred, and instead commit to support legislative changes that will prevent weapons of war from ever again being used against any American community.

Our community still grieves the loss of 22 of our beloved family members, friends, and neighbors. Our wounds will take much more time to heal, especially as we brace for the 22 funerals that we know will follow within the coming days and weeks. It is for these reasons that we pray that you will cancel your proposed trip to El Paso. Many of us hold your incendiary words and the refusal of the Republican Party to take any action on common-sense gun reforms that seek to prevent tragedies such as ours responsible for the massacres in El Paso and Dayton this past weekend. A visit from you will only result in our community’s inability to begin the long journey of healing and prolong the heartbreak and anger that all of us are feeling right now.

Thank you for your consideration and I hope that you will announce the cancellation of your trip as soon as possible so that our community can continue to grieve and heal in peace.

Iliana Holguin

Chairwoman, El Paso County Democratic Party

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