Donald Trump is hitting all of his favorite notes at his State of the Union speech—especially when it comes to launching disgusting attacks on immigrants.
Trump spent a huge portion of the speech going after immigrants, and he did it in an especially insidious way. First, Trump marched out two families whose daughters—Kayla Cuevas and Nisa Mickens—were murdered. Authorities suspect that members of the MS-13 gang—which, despite what Trump would have you think, started in America—are behind the deaths.
“Many of these gang members took advantage of glaring loopholes in our laws to enter the country as illegal, unaccompanied alien minors—and wound up in Kayla and Nisa’s high school,” Trump said, a note of glee in his voice. He then moved onto a discussion about the highly restrictive immigration policies he wants to enact.
The story he told is indeed tragic. But cut through the emotional manipulation and there is no question as to what Trump is trying to do here: he is terrorizing immigrant communities by playing on the fears of white Americans. He also shamelessly attempted to use people of color—the families of the slain teens are black and Latinx—as a shield for his obvious racism.
But it got, if anything, worse. “As President of the United States, my highest loyalty, my greatest compassion, and my constant concern is for America’s children, America’s struggling workers, and America’s forgotten communities,” Trump said. If you didn’t get the message, he then spelled it out: “Because Americans are dreamers too.” It’s All Lives Matter, but for DACA. You can always count on Trump to be as vile as possible when it comes to immigration.