As a Hispanic member of the Republican Party, I am appalled by Donald Trump’s recent derogatory comments regarding immigrants. As we celebrate the Fourth of July this weekend and reflect on our freedom and independence, let us not forget the sacrifices that immigrants have made for this country. Rather than painting a broad brushstroke over immigration, perhaps Mr. Trump should stick to what he knows best: building casinos and creating drama on television shows.
The fact is, the contributions made by immigrants is real-life drama, and I know it all too well. My grandparents on both sides of my family came from Mexico, having gone through the legal process like so many before them. My grandfather wasn’t a “rapist” or a “killer.” He worked as a mechanic for the Santa Fe railroad for 30 years, and taught me the importance of hard work, while my grandmother instilled in me the meaning of respect for others. My father served honorably in the United States Marine Corp and later worked at Norton Air Force Base where he eventually retired. Their sacrifices, life lessons and dedication made it possible for me to be the first elected Hispanic District Attorney in San Bernardino County.
While the foundation of our freedom and democracy allows Mr. Trump his right to free speech, it should be tempered with restraint, dignity for all cultures and just plain common decency—especially from someone hoping to one day represent our great nation. We are America, we are one. We are united, and only together can we continue to achieve greatness and prosper as our forefathers planned on July 4, 1776. God bless America.