Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta has officially sent in his resignation amid public outcry of his involvement in Epstein’s sex trafficking case. When asked for his thoughts on Acosta’s resignation, Trump brought up his ethnicity.
Acosta who served as the U.S. Attorney in Florida was criticized with his loose handling of child sex offender Jeffrey Epstein years ago. Epstein who has made headlines this week for his arrest of child sex trafficking had a relationship with Trump.
Trump told reporters that Acosta’s leaving was a decision that he made on his own. Stating that Acosta was "a tremendous talent. He's a Hispanic man, he went to Harvard, a great student."
Trump’s quote instantly became the number one trending topic, as Twitter users wondered what Acosta’s ethnicity had to do with his political profession.
The mention of Acosta’s ethnicity was not relevant to the conversation, but Trump’s inclusion of his race could be seen as a deflection of the outright racist legislation he has been promoting.
Trump’s treatment of DACA students, the family separation at the border and countless others cannot and will not be forgotten simply because the victims are of the same racial background as Acosta.
While Acosta’s circumstance is not race related, Trump’s comments are synonymous to the “I can’t be racist, I have a black friend” comments. A micro-aggressive phrase black Americans have heard countless times in the workplace and in schools.
Regardless of one’s ethnicity, sexuality or gender, they can still be on the side of the oppressor. One’s identification in a one or more marginalized communities does not automatically make one an ally of it. In some cases, it is what drives the aggression for it. This has been proven with Acosta, Sarah Sanders, Betsy Devois, Ben Carlson, and unfortunately many more.
As the 2020 Presidential election nears closer, Americans must remember that race and gender should not be the only factors to determine who will actually fight for us.