For Hispanic Heritage Month, Media Matters looks back at four times Latinos stood up for Hispanic representation in the media to combat xenophobia, anti-immigrant slurs, and attacks on Spanish language.
When Jorge Ramos Stood Up Against Anti-Immigrant Slurs
Univision's Jorge Ramos Called Out Use Of “Illegal” Slur To Describe Undocumented Immigrants: “No Human Being Is Illegal.” Univision anchor Jorge Ramos corrected Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump's use of the slur “illegals” to refer to undocumented immigrants, saying “no human being is illegal”:
TRUMP: Now if they come from Mexico do you mind if I send them back to Mexico?
RAMOS: The problem is not... (inaudible)
TRUMP: No, no do you mind if I send them back to Mexico?
RAMOS: If they're criminals, there's no problem.
TRUMP: Ok those people are out. They're going to be out so fast your head will spin, all right? The rest we're going to do-- remember you used the word “illegal immigrant”.
RAMOS: No, I didn't use the word illegal immigrant.
TRUMP: Well you should use it because that's what the definition is.
RAMOS: No human being is illegal Mr. Trump. [Univision Noticias, 8/25/15]
When This CNN Anchor Called Immigrant Bashing By Its Proper Name
CNN En Español's Fernando Del Rincón Called Out Trump's Immigrant Bashing: "It's Called Xenophobia." During the June 29 edition of CNN En Español's Conclusiones, anchor Fernando del Rincón called out GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump's use of slurs against immigrants, pointing out “It's called xenophobia”:
Translated from CNN en Español's Conclusiones:
DEL RINCÓN: Mr. Trump, let me explain what you did, because it has a name. It is clearly defined by the U.N.. You didn't just offend a race or country. You offended humanity. It's called xenophobia. [CNN en Español, Conclusiones, 6/29/15]
When An Arizona Anchor Flaunted Her Spanish-Language Pride
Anchor Vanessa Ruiz Defended Pronouncing Spanish Words “The Way They Are Meant To Be Pronounced.” Arizona news anchor Vanessa Ruiz defended her pronunciation of Spanish words following viewer criticism:
RUIZ: I'd like to take a few moments to say thank you to all of you who have expressed a warm welcome and also warm wishes, encouragement, after my arrival here to 12 News. As some of you already know, I love to engage with you on social media, so of course keep all of those tweets and Facebook posts coming also. Some of you have noticed I pronounce a couple of things maybe a little bit differently than what you're used to. And I get that, and maybe even tonight you saw a little bit of it. Just so you know, I was lucky enough to grow up speaking two languages, and I have lived in other cities in the U.S., South America, and Europe -- so yes, I do like to pronounce certain things the way they are meant to be pronounced. And I know that change can be difficult, but it's normal, and over time I know that everything falls into place. [KPNX, 12 News At Ten, 9/4/15]
When José Díaz-Balart Pushed Back Against Conservative Media's War On Spanish Language
Díaz-Balart Defended His Bilingual Interview: “I'm Bilingual, And You Know What? We're Not Leaving.” José Díaz-Balart defended his bilingual interview on Telemundo's Un Nuevo Dia, saying “If our names bother them, what we all have to tell them is 'I'm bilingual, and you know what? We're not leaving,'” in response to conservative radio host Laura Ingraham's mockery:
DANIEL SARCOS: Dear and respected José Díaz-Balart, we cannot lose the focus of what has just happened. When you, who are such a respected man, are a victim of bullying by this North American radio host, they are bullying millions -- millions of people who in this moment are watching us, who with their hard work, their efforts, want to improve their lives and integrate into the culture of this great and generous country. Isn't that the case?
DÍAZ-BALART: Exactly right.
NEIDA SANDOVAlL: It happens to many people at their work.
DÍAZ-BALART: It happens to many people everywhere, all the time. But you know what? We are here to contribute. To take our families forward. To contribute to this country. And to people who are bothered by the fact that in this country there are 53 million Hispanics contributing to the economy, to the culture, to the country's infrastructure. If our names bother them, what we all have to tell them is 'I'm bilingual, and you know what? We're not leaving.' [Telemundo, Un Nuevo Dia, 9/29/14]