(This blog post was revised on August 5, 2018.)
Earlier this week, a hostile white woman who regards herself as an American (sic) was caught on video in Los Angeles, threatening to call ICE on a woman and her baby. Cell phone video of the incident was recorded by Maria Navarro and posted on YouTube.
Although we should usually discourage public shaming, the actions of the woman carrying the coffee cup were shameful. She wasn’t embarrassed. She was upholding the Trump Hate Pledge, and she was willing to damage people’s lives in the process.
Many Trump supporters will cheer on hate when they’re at rallies or posting online, but I hope some of those people hesitate when they actually look into the eyes of someone they think deserves trouble with the authorities. Avoiding eye contact is easiest, though, and so is ignoring news reports of what persecuted people go through in other countries before they risk life and limb to enter the U.S. It’s most convenient for Trumpies to stay uninformed, and in a bubble where nothing can be heard aside from Fox News commentary bouncing off the walls.
Often, these tirades are initiated by people who know nothing about the immigration status or citizenship of individuals who get their attention. Anyone speaking a language other than English or having dark skin is at risk of being harassed in public places. No, U.S. citizens in that jam are not required to carry birth certificates or U.S. passports to share with unstable people who confront them. They’d better not, either. An unhinged person who learns your name and/or address is likely to try to contact you again later. Besides, documentation didn’t work for Barak Obama. Reactionaries — who already knew what they wanted to believe — insisted his birth certificate from Hawaii was falsified.
Here’s Ms. Navarro’s video. If you’d like to share this video without sharing my blog post, just click the YouTube logo at the lower right corner of the video while it’s playing. That will take you to YouTube’s page, and you can share it from there.
(Note: If you learn the identity of the woman with the coffee cup, please don’t encourage others to memorize her name or learn where she lives. Although her behavior is detestable, she should not be endangered and no one should test her temper. Just think of her as an anonymous person who is part of a national tragedy, and address the general emergency.)