tv Call-in with Jorge Ramos Stranger CSPAN May 6, 2018 10:30am-11:01am EDT
word gives you the most interesting daily video highlights in their own words with no commentary. book to the newsletter sent weekly is an insider's look at upcoming authors and a book festivals and the american history tv weekly newsletter gives you the upcoming program exploit our nation's past. visit c-span.org/connect and the sign-up today. >> we are kicking off our coverage here in la with author and journalist jorge ramos with his most recent book called "stranger: that challenge of a latino immigrant in the trunk era". you refer to yourself-- [inaudible] guest: i was discussing my life and her life with her and we were realizing that many times mexican sometimes mexican-american, sometimes with chicano.
this is a place where i came when i was immigrant for the first time and then i realized i'm living in two worlds right now, we have an interview in english and yesterday i did an interview in spanish and i realize i'm going from one world to another and that's precisely how i feel that i'm an amphibian. unfortunately i will never be american enough for many americansun , but i will never be mexican enough for many mexicans either so i'm in between, so i'm an amphibian. host: you write i will never be american enough for many americans, just as i will never be mexican enough for many mexicans. do you feel that home and more in mexico? guest: i think-- i don't think i have a home anymore. when i decided to be an immigrant and that was probably the most difficult decision in my life, i think i left home and i don't have a
home anymore. when i think of home, it's a place where i grew up as a kid with my three brothers and sisters. when i go back to mexico,e i pass in front of the house andnd that is home for me. i think i have been looking for the idea of home and once you are immigrant i think you lose them forever and you are constantly looking for that home and it's impossible to get a back. host: has it been worse since november 2016 in your view? guest: it's been worse since june, 26-- 2015, since donald trump launches candidacy. i learn english too late in my life and it's difficult. my kids correct me constantly. they are my best teachers. in the history of united states, changes. it's a difficult and sometimes i faced
anti-immigrant sentiment , but never as it is nowen, but when a candidate says that mexican immigrants are criminals and rapistsat as donald trump said june, , and you know it's a lie that he is lying and that he's talking about you and he's not telling the truth, that was difficult and then when that same candidate publishes on instagram your cell phone numberbl, that's difficult. when that candidate has a bodyguard throw you out of a press conference like he did with me, yes, that's difficultdy. as an immigrant i never felt rejection, but the hates is different and i think hate is contagious and in this case from my point of view it's coming from the top down host: do you think donald trump is racist?
guest: i don't think donald trump is racist. i do know what's coming out of his mouth and what came out of his mouthh are racist statements when he said mexican immigrants were criminals and rapists, that's a racist statement. when he-- [inaudible] when he said recently that people from haiti and african nations-- [inaudible] is coming directly from the president of the united states or kwei cannot normalize that behavior. it's not normal. it's our responsibility as journalists to question that behavior. host: stranger, the challenge of a latino immigrant in the trunk era is the name of the book. jorge ramos is the author. here's your chance to talk with him.ng
go ahead and dialing them we will begin taking your calls in a minute. mr. ramos, do your kids feel like foreigners in the mexico? guest: probably. host: because they are americans guest: they were born in the united states. they feel 100% american, and when they go back to mexico with me on vacation or to visit my mom i don't think they feel mexican, no. i don't think they do. although, nowadays we are not monolithic. for instance, my son is 19. he's cuban mexican-american, spaniard cuban mexican-american and that's who we are. going back, a culture made out of wood and paper in which it's formed by different parts of animals. in other words, it's
something many people might consider a monster and other people might think of it as incredibly angelic figure. that's who we are. we are made of very different parts from different persuasions in countries and elements. host: you refer in your book to president obamaat-- [inaudible]] guest: yes>>. president obama promised us on tv when he was a candidate in 2008, that he would do immigration reform. he didn't deliver. he didn't do it and in 2009, before ted kennedy got sick he controlled the white house and congress and he could have done that. he didn't do it and then president obama deported to a half-million immigrants, destroyed thousands of families and he was no other president had done something like that.
this is important because i think as a journalist you have to be independent. i have a track president trump because of his racist remarks, but also criticize president barack obama for what he did. host: you have a chapter in your new book, when to stop being distrustful. guest: as a journalistic equivalent responsibility to report reality as it is whereas we wish it would be, but more importantly support-- responsibility we have is to question those in power and when it comes to racism, discrimination corruption, public life i think we have to take a step. holocaust survivor used to say equality helps the oppressor, never the victim and i think the best examples we have a great journalism is to take a stand, not only watergate, mccarthy era where the boston globe attacking m the republicans, i think as
journalists we don't do that. i think as journalism as a public service and not a public service it's for me to question those in power. host: do you think your immigrant experience as you mentionedce having an accent, being first generation, do you think it's any different than other immigrants are having? guest: no. i think it is exactly as any other immigrants, butt it is not only me who feels like a stranger, the title of the book. i think thousands probably millions of immigrants and latinos who feel like strangers in their own countryll. i have been in this country for 35 years and as we had discussed this country gave me the opportunity that my country could not give me. still, i still feel like a stranger. why is that? i think it has to do with politics, but also has to do with the
anxiety happening in this country right now in which many people feel uncomfortable with the demographic revolutionwi that we are living. in 2044 everyone will be a minority and many politiciansg are taking advantage of these anxieties blaming immigrants for crime and economic troubles we have and it's not right. it's fake newss and immigrants are look less likely to be behind bars than us citizens. immigrants contribute billions of dollars a year to the economy and somehow when we hear president trump talking it's only that we are being invaded, that there are criminals. he's talking about gangs that's not who we are. i do understand that some immigrants, very fewat commit crimes, but to criticize all the immigrant population for
what if you have done. host: let's hear from some of our collars, margaret in leavenworth, kansas. go-ahead. you are on with jorge ramos. caller: what an honor to say hello to you and how much i respect you after all you went through. i would like to tell you that we are all strangers in this country. i was an army brat in the 50s and 60s and lived all over and boy, when you go from the north to the south and you get calledd a yankee and all kinds of terrible names and then being catholic in the south, i mean, when john kennedy was killed there were some people in that school that were happy, so being an army brat i don't quite understand you are just feeling like a stranger because i was a stranger all over and i think obama responded to the fact that in chicago there's a lot ofob companies that import all kind of
illegal so they no caps up a people and the black population got very angry that they were always being displacedpl by africans like nigerians, filipinos, mexicans and they wanted the jobs and they were always called lazye . i think he did that because of that, but corporations use all of this to manipulate people to my knowledge, mexicans were here first , i mean, i don't know everything there. i watch a lot of historyin and it looked like they were here first-- host: margaret, a lot to chew on. let's hear from our guest, jorge ramos. guest: well, i appreciate your call and i agree with you that many of us feel like strangers in this country. why do i feel like a stranger? well, when a candidate says-- candidate that became president says go back he really means go
back to mexico, but when one of his supporters tells me outside the press conference where i was ejected, get out of my countryut, you feel like a stranger. when your community is an attack by the president of the united states you do feel like a stranger, but at the end i think the idea of tolerancet , multicultural societies will prevail. i think at the end the idea of americans that will prevail is the one that i hear from the dreamers or from the students that survived the massacre in parkland that's united states picked as the america i believe. host: jorge ramos, what about the baltics nationme, the latino immigrants, black population
maguey's, etc.? at one point did we not talk to every-- at what point did we not talk to everyone?? guest: at the point in which we think being diverse is a senseis and that's exactly the opposite. i think this is america. this is the future . he gave a wonderful speech in san francisco and said we have looked into the future. this is the future. california is the future. everyone will be a minority in 2024, latinos, african-americans, native americans, everyone will be a minority and when we think of the other is the enemy, that is when division started and i think many politicians are taking advantage of that demographic that we are seeing. host: led to use say to someone that is sincerely afraid of unchecked immigration? guest: talk to me.
talk to other immigrants this is very important because when we hear president trump and many conservatives talking about immigrants they are person enough as criminals. every time an immigrant commits a crime they generalize. they are criminalizing the whole population and it's wrong. as a matter of fact, the more immigrants that you have the less crime you have. these are the numbers. in 1990, there were about 3.9 million immigrants in the country. in 2013 that number grew to 11.2 million, so the undocumented population grew incredibly from 3 million to 11 million and in those years according to the fbi violent crimes in this country decreased 48%, so what is happening? the more immigrants you have either undocumented
the less crime you have, but when you hear politicians and president trump it's completely different, so, yes, i understand some people are anxious about that, but i think they have to realize we are not what we are being portrayed by trump and his administration. host: france in toledo, ohio. caller: i was wondering if your guest has considered racism is not a form of ignorance, but a form of deliberate cruelty? there is something evil in human nature i. it's difficult for me to believe racist people don't know better and that they are really that dumb. caller: so, the question is on racism? guest: well, i think that racism happens when you don't know who your neighbor is, when you don't
understand who is in front of you, when you are simply afraid of someone just because you don't know him or how to pronounce his name, and i do understand that the country is changing and it's changing rapidly.y. when everyone it will be a minority you might think that the other is the enemy, but we are not. i think racism happens when you think of the other is the enemy, and the only way you can reach that is talking to others and understanding that what you are being told in social media and onto the is not the truth. host: jorge ramos is the host of univision which means what?
caller: going to the point. host: how big is univision's audience? is a nationwide? guest: ya. host: hemisphere wise? guest: on it univision this is what happened, when i first came to the united states from california in 1983 there were 15 million latinos and write down there will be 60 million and in less than 30 years the population will grow to more than 100 million latinos one and three will be a latino in this country and many of them are still connected to their countries of origin. many of them speak spanish at home and that is our audience. still growing. many immigrants come to the country g still feel more country in spanish than english and that's our audiencece. also, we have many challenges. as you know there is a
huge migration from larger screen to smallscreen and we have to understand that many latinos now feel more comfortable in english and spanish and that is a challenge we are facing now as any other networks. host: let's hear from brian in wisconsin. caller: hello. i felt horrible when you were removed from thatt press conference and when i was a child-- that's a while ago. i am 61 6. you were told that anyone can be president -- grow up to be president. who would want to be president now ? i think complements of events, the russians, anti-immigration, this foolishness over e-mails has brought this country, i mean, we are going to have supreme court judges for life, not to mentionin
destroying the countries faith in its institutions like the fbi. taking a guys pension two days before is going to retire, i mean, i'm ashamed. it's going to be a hard hard call to get it back to it we had. guest: i do understand what you are telling me, but i'm really optimistic. despite the fact of what i have gone through and despite the fact what everyone has gone through i am very optimistic. what donald trump is by using a bodyguard to remove me from a press conference is the same thing fidel castro did with me. he prevented me from asking more questions with a bodyguard so you have fidel castro doing same thing and then he
would say well, we are on the wrong path. yes, we are on the wrong path. however, i'm so inspired boat what i see right now with the dreamers and the studentss from the massacre in parkland school. it's incredible how these millennial's we criticized so much in the past, incredible how the parkland survivors in the dreamers are taking this country in two important issues, donald trump and immigration, so that the future of the united statesth depends on the dreamers and on the parkland survivors i think we are in good hands so i'm inspired by them and i'm completely sure that this era will end and that the future of the us will be-- [inaudible] i see so many movements of resistance and rebellion s that i'm absolutely convinced that eventually we will be in the right. the us will do the right
thing, i think. i'm on immigrants and i just one other immigrants to run the same opportunitiesi' that i had when i came to this country. host: august, 2015, iowa getting thrown out of the press conference. what was the results after that? guest: you know, no one paid attention to us a when we were doing those things. when we said that it was dangerous for candidates to make racist statements about immigrants on june the 2015, no one paid attention. people were saying you are latino, sensitive and don't know what's happening and then they didn't take it seriously when i got ejected from that press conference in iowa they were saying well, that's donald trumpfr or don't pay attention to that. people did not realize that it was an attack on
the first amendment, an attack on freedom of speech on journalism. they say well, it's again donald trump being donald trump. no. racism. the second case was an attack on a journalist and we understood what was happening and when i say we, we immigrants, we latinos we realized what was happening and many people did not pay attention and when they pay attention, it was already too late. host: from stranger chapter called disobey. here is my advice, jorge ramosed, disobey when you're standing in front of eight racist disobey. when they want to discriminate against you, disobey. when they ask for something unjust, disobey. when they cannot publicly defend what they say in private, disobey. when they demanded loyaltyis above honesty, disobey. when things have to change and there is no other way to do so, disobey. do it peacefully, but
disobey nonetheless. guest: that's for my kids. i wrote that for my kids we are in a time in which silence is not an option. i think you have to stand up, speak up, speak out and if we remain silent when things like this are happening, i think, we are being complacent and i don't want be complacent and i don't want my kids to be complacent and i want them to disobey when something is wrong. i think donald trump is presenting to us a moral dilemma and at this moment silence is not an option and if you say silent, then you are antaking a side. 20 years from now when my kids ask me, you were a journalist when donald trump was president,
what did you do, i can safely say i resisted, that i said no and i asked questions. host: bradford is in clarksville, tennessee. hello. caller: hello. my comment is this, seems to me the north american immigration problemsis could have been nicked in the bud at plymouth bay in 1620. host: okay. we will leave your comments stand unless she went to respond to anything he has to say. guest: well,l, everyone is an immigrant here.. everyone is an immigrant here. we all came from other countries unless you are native american, and 40% of the founders of
fortune 500 companies were either immigrants or sons of immigrants and i think the american experiment has been fantastic. i love this. it's very difficult to see the spaces, these in any other country the world. this is a wonderful countryy and we just had to make sure that we continue fighting for diversity and for inclusiony. and for tolerance. that's all. host: richard and brett word, marilyn. you are on book tv with author jorge ramos. caller: good afternoon. i just wanted to say to the author that on many occasions i have heard him take against-- a swipe against president obama because he did not do what he could have done when they had the majority in the house and whatnot, but i would submit to you, mr. ramos , that things had to be prioritizedto during
that time. the country was in an economic upheaval going over the cliff and so i think for him to insist that the president should have pushed this particular issue to the front at all costssh is a little bit, you know, undeserving, i mean, we deserve-- you deserved to have your issue heard, but not over thesu economic wherewithal of the nation as a wholeof. lastly, as far as him being here 35 years, i would like to refer to an interview i once saw between the author james baldwin and robert kennedy and robert kennedy i think from cambridge made a comment that well, i see in a few years we will probably have a black president and james baldwin replied to that was well, the issue is that we have been here for about 400 years and
irish have been here for less than 80 and already you are running for president and telling me that we have to wait and it's not time for that yet, so i just wanted to say to mete mr. ramos and i have followed him somewhat that, you know, during that time in 2008, 2010 the country was in a bad way and economically i think it took precedence over what your issues were. thank you very much. peter, you are the best interviewer i have ever seen. thanks. guest: i would agree with that. you know, you are right. lets me say that despite the fact that president obama deported more at immigrants than any other president in their future of the-- history of the united states that thanks to president obama we have the dream at and thinks to him hundreds of thousands of dreamersavac are able to be living in this country with no fear.
now, president obama told me in an interview in 2008 as a candidate that he was going to introduce immigration reformod in his first year in office. that was his promise. it was not my promise. it was his promise. he promised of thatro. he did not deliver. i do understand that the country was going through an economic crisis in 2008 and there were priorities, but i think you can do two things at the same time and if he did not mean that, he doesn't have to promise it. he did and he did not keep his word. that's the only thing i'm saying. host: mercedes and pennsylvania. with 30 seconds left. host: mercedes is no longer with us. jorge ramos, final questionna. at what points if people want to come to this country, at what point does it become the
responsible yet other countries to maybe alter how they are doing things so people don't want to necessarily lead guest: immigration is a very complex economic phenomenon. something pushes you out of that country and something pulls you in and i think it is the responsibility of both countries and also it is the responsibility of the us. immigrants don't come here just because they want to go to disneyland or kill americans. no. they come here to do the jobs no one else wants .o do they are taking care of our kids, building our and it's also our responsibility. they are coming here, many illegallys because of us and we have to do something, . host: stranger is the name of the book. this is welcome your eighth book? guest: thirteen. host: i missed five of them. sorry for jorge ramos has been our custom we look forward to having him back on book tv.