The Media Really Needs to Start Telling the Truth About Donald Trump and Immigration

If you follow politics at all, or have watched any sort of cable news over the last few weeks, you’ve undoubtedly heard the assertion that Donald Trump is “softening his stance” on illegal immigration. I joked with a buddy of mine that if we took a shot of whiskey every time it was said during one of these discussions about Trump, we’d be drunk in less than an hour.

While I understand it’s a slow time for news so the media needs to find something to talk about — plus they’re desperate to make this a much closer race than it has been because they need the drama to boost ratings (aka revenue) heading into November — I’ve hit my limit when it comes to people trying to legitimize Trump’s lies and propaganda.

Donald Trump is not “softening” his stance on illegal immigration. This is nothing more than him desperately trying to pander to Latino and independent voters who he’s turned off with the bigoted anti-immigrant rhetoric he used to fuel his campaign and win the Republican presidential primary.

Not only that, but he’s talking out of both sides of his face.

One on side, he’s going out and telling folks that he’s open to the idea of not deporting every illegal immigrant and letting the ones who’ve been productive members of society stay here — though they’ll never be given American citizenship.

Well, that’s called amnesty.

Donald Trump, his campaign and his supporters can spin that stance however they want, but saying that the illegal immigrants who’ve been good, upstanding members of society can stay here — is amnesty. Donald Trump saying that they’ll “never be given citizenship” is just a petty right-wing talking point they like to use to act as if it’s not amnesty — when it absolutely is.

Furthermore, the overwhelming majority of illegal immigrants who are here fall into the category of “upstanding members of society.” He drove his campaign by saying he was going to deport all illegal immigrants, yet if he only deports criminals, then he’s not going to be deporting many at all.

However, I don’t believe any of this because he’s still pandering to the same radical, anti-immigrant bigots he’s catered to throughout his campaign.

Which brings me to the other side of this issue where he’s still getting his minions to chant “Build that wall!” during his speeches, his campaign is saying that “nothing” has changed about his immigration policy (when, according to his recent statements, it most definitely has) and he’s still insisting that he’s going to have “deportation forces” hunting down illegal immigrants.

Depending on who Trump’s talking to, or who’s speaking for his campaign, you’ll get a different answer each and every time about where he stands on immigration. He’s literally going out there and trying to push the same “deport them all/build that wall” rhetoric that the mindless sheep who follow him love hearing — while also telling some that he now supports the very same amnesty he criticized some of his Republican opponents for supporting during the primary.

I think this idiocy was best summed up by infamous campaign buffoon Katrina Pierson, who insisted that Trump’s immigration policies haven’t changed… he’s just changing his words

If you’re confused as to what that even means, I don’t blame you — because it doesn’t make a damn bit of sense.

But the media is playing right into this by continuing to claim he’s “softening” his stance instead of calling this what it really is: A pathetic act of desperation that’s not remotely valid, genuine or even believable. 

Undoubtedly, Trump’s campaign realizes that he’s going to get blown out in November if he loses every key voting demographic besides uneducated white males.

His campaign is now banking on the overwhelming ignorance of the average Trump supporter to believe anything he tells them. Knowing that his supporters will believe anything he says, he can flip-flop all he wants on his immigration rhetoric and it won’t change their minds about him. He knows to ease any concerns they might have, all he has to say is, “I haven’t changed a thing about my immigration policy and I’m going to build that wall” — and they blindly cheer like pre-programmed robots. Every. Single. Time. 

However, because the media refuses to say what’s really going on here, it’s been working. Trump’s numbers have seen some improvements and he’s managed to shift a lot of the talk away from the fact that his campaign spent over a year using bigotry and racism to vilify just about every minority group in this country.

After all, this is the very same guy who, just a few weeks ago, used blatant racism (Speaker of the House Paul Ryan’s own words) when he accused an American-born federal judge of being biased against him because of the judge’s Mexican heritage. We’re also talking about the same person who launched his campaign by calling most Mexican immigrants rapists and criminals.

Yet, you rarely hear that mentioned anymore. Instead, the media is focused on his “softening” on immigration, practically (and falsely) painting him as someone who’s evolved to become more tolerant, accepting and humane.

Meanwhile, he stages a photo-op in Mexico where he cowardly read remarks someone prepared for him, refusing to use any of his big “go-to” rhetoric he’s used his entire campaign — then flew to Arizona where he gave a speech that sounded as if it was something straight out of a white nationalist’s anti-immigration playbook. It was a complete contradiction from most of what he said earlier in the day following his meeting with the Mexican president.

Enough is enough! 

What the media needs to start doing is talking about how Trump’s flip-flops on immigration are nothing more than his desperate attempt to save a floundering campaign that saw its numbers hitting the low to mid 30’s heading into the main stretch of the general election. That Trump spent over a year attacking Mexicans and various other minority groups, never once making any actual attempt to reach out to any of them until he realized he’s going to need them if he wants to stand any chance of becoming president. That Trump would never be attempting to lie about “softening” his stance on illegal immigration if he thought he could win by vilifying Mexican immigrants.

Again, he’s not really “softening his stance” — he’s just picking and choosing when he thinks he needs to sound more moderate so he can con voters into believing his bullshit.

I’m not asking the media to do anything that they shouldn’t have already been doing for months. While I know it’s been fun for the networks to help keep Donald Trump as relevant as possible, playtime is over. It’s now September, just about two months away from the election, and it’s about time they start doing their job.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.


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