Early in the Republican primaries for the 2016 presidential election, Donald Trump claimed that Mexican immigrants were bringing with them... Read More
Early in the Republican primaries for the 2016 presidential election, Donald Trump claimed that Mexican immigrants were bringing with them nothing more than drugs, crime, and rape. I was stunned at his willingness to demonize a whole group in such awful terms. It seemed odd, but in my 33 years I struggled to recall any other incident when somebody with so much wealth (and therefore power) had publicly denounced an entire branch of our population, especially a group of people who—arguably— face some of the greatest challenges when trying to prosper in our country.
I was taken aback at this strange slight-of-hand I was witnessing. Here was an individual who threatened to dismantle the progress our country had made over the last 50 years via his racist rants, trying to turn our ire toward a hugely innocent scape-goat. It was as if I was watching a bad magician trying to pull his audience’s eyes and fear toward a pocketknife he held in one hand while shooting a child with the automatic weapon he held in his other.
In this piece, I’ve inserted a Martian into the procession of blind men from Pieter Bruegel the Elder's The Blind Leading the Blind and spot lit his potentially ominous presence. Meanwhile, off to the right, a man with an ax is attacking the head of the parade. While we focus our eyes and anxieties on the easier visual target, we ignore the more immediate and lethal threat we’re blindly moving toward.