Trump cannot make America great without Latinos
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As Cabinet positions continue to fill up in the coming administration, there is one question many Americans have for President-elect Trump: Where’s the diversity?

Donald TrumpDonald TrumpTrump defends indicted GOP congressman House to vote Thursday on holding Bannon in contempt Youngkin calls for investigation into Loudoun County School Board amid sexual assault allegations MORE’s comment that he has “great respect” for the Latino community in particular may have worked on the campaign trail, but where is it in the future Trump administration? If he plans on running again and beating the next Democrat in 2020, he’ll need some diversity in his administration — and yes, in key positions that show he does in fact have great respect for Latinos.

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Large numbers of Latinos overlooked Trump’s disparaging remarks about Mexicans being murderers and rapists, voting for the real estate mogul in hopes that his success as a businessman is what America needs most, not another politician. There are many in the Latino community who believe in being producers: creating jobs, not being parasites, and serving our country proudly. Many are registered Republicans.

I know a family whose eldest child, a son, served in U.S. Air Force for decades, just like his father before him did, and who has a master’s degree in human resources. The next sibling, another son, has two car dealerships. The next son has a small repair shop, and his sister works for an agency that finds jobs for those in need. The youngest in this family is an Arizona licensed sports agent, political consultant and community organizer. This family is only the second generation, as the parents of this family were the first — you know, you call them “anchor babies.”

The grandmothers to this family, like many, came to this country illegally, but these women were not rapists or murderers — not even close. The grandmothers were given citizenship under the Reagan administration and were grateful knowing that they were finally recognized as Americans even in their later years of life. I know this family really well — you see, I’m the youngest sibling in this family.

The president-elect should know this story, and the many others that are similar all across this country, for those who have come here from Mexico and those from every nation in the world who have made it to our shores, bringing in the much-needed talent and skills this country was founded on, which is still needs today.

All Americans — those in the Latino community included — know that America cannot just let people come to this country without taking the steps needed to come in legally. Many agree that we need to start some type of immigration reform — one that enables many who are here, and have been for many years, to start a process to become a legal resident or citizen.

Every person that may qualify to become a legal resident or for an American citizen must go through meticulous background check and meet standards that the U.S. House and Senate can both agree upon so that a bill can pass and be on the desk for President-elect Trump to sign.

Those undocumented residents in our jail system who have committed crimes — any crime — must be deported back to their point of origin, period! I would venture to say most, if not all, Americans can agree on that.

Those born in this country, by law, and for as long as the Constitution has existed, are Americans. Many people believe that grown children who have lived here most of their lives here, without any legal issues, should have a path to citizenship. Even first-generation adults who have been here, for an agreed-upon length of time by the House and Senate, without any legal issues, should begin a pathway toward citizenship also.

I have faith that the Congress and the American people will join together to pass a fair law for the president to sign early in 2017.

President-elect Trump: If your transition team can’t find a more diverse group to help staff leadership posts here in America, get rid of them, because they’re doing a poor job for the Republican Party and for the United States of America.

Let’s keep America the envy of the world and show that we value all those who strive to be the best that they can be and call themselves Americans. And like our elected president says, “Let’s make America great again.”

 

John Rodriguez is a community organizer and Arizona licensed sports agent.


The views expressed by contributors are their own and not the views of The Hill.