Congressman Walden: Please condemn presidential bigotry, in the spirit of House Resolution 183

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Dear Congressman Walden (R-OR2):

It is important that you and all Americans read the president’s tweets telling four congresswomen to go back to the countries they came from. The tweets crossed a line (in fact, multiple lines) that should trigger our collective outrage—regardless of political affiliation.    

The congresswomen’s politics are generally left of my own thinking, but that is entirely irrelevant: I don’t need to agree with them to strongly defend their right (in fact, their obligation as elected officers) to have and express political positions. As I hope you agree, a president should know and honor this.

The four congresswomen are—by definition—American citizens. That one is a naturalized citizen does not matter. Except on the eligibility for president, place of birth does not restrict our citizen’s rights. As I hope you agree, a president should know and honor this.

Of the three congresswomen born in America, one had immigrant parents—much like the president. What makes him superior? Being male? Being white? His parents being European? His religion? We live in 2019! Discrimination based on these (and other) factors is prohibited by law. As I hope you agree, the president should know and honor this.

The tweets were sent in an weekend when highly publicized ICE raids were scheduled, targeting illegal immigrants. The raids are viewed by many as political messaging, more than law enforcement. The joint message of raids and these specific tweets can be terrifying for migrants (whether or not illegal) and non-whites in general. The message will likely consolidate the support of the president among white supremacists. As I hope you agree, the president should know this, and be ashamed by it.

None of this is normal, or acceptable. In the spirit of House Resolution 183which you voted for, and that condemns intolerance and bigotryplease:

(1) Acknowledge, in the strongest terms, that the president crossed uncrossable lines.

(2) Ask the president to apologize to your four colleagues, and, in fact, to Congress as a co-equal branch of government.

(3) Work, within your party and across the aisle, to introduce a House motion of censure to the president.


— Antonio Baptista


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