POLITICS

In op-ed, Jorge Ramos says it was his journalistic duty to confront Donald Trump

A security guard removes Univision anchor Jorge Ramos from a news conference, Aug. 25, 2015, in Dubuque, Iowa.

A security guard removes Univision anchor Jorge Ramos from a news conference, Aug. 25, 2015, in Dubuque, Iowa.

Univision anchor Jorge Ramos took to the station's website to defend his headline-grabbing confrontation with presidential candidate Donald Trump at a press conference this week.

The essay comes a few days after Trump dismissed Ramos from his press conference after the anchor shouted questions out of turn and a bodyguard escorted the journalist out before letting him back in.

“I’m a journalist and my job is to ask questions,” Ramos began his essay by saying in Spanish.

“Donald Trump is a candidate for the presidency of the United States and his job is to explain what he would do if he gets to the White House. His job and mine collide.”

Ramos said Trump outright lied when he said in his June presidential announcement that Mexico dumps its worst on the United States – drug dealers, rapists, etc.

Ramos, who proudly says he’s as much of an advocate as he is a journalist, challenged Trump on his various hardline immigration views.

“The reality is different,” Ramos said. “The majority of the undocumented are not criminals. All studies…conclude that the percentage of criminals among immigrants is far smaller than it is among those born in the United States. Nor is there any evidence – none! – of a conspiracy by the Mexican government to send its criminals north.”

Ramos said since listening to Trump’s many questionable assertions about Mexicans, he felt compelled to challenge him.

“How do you plan to deport 11 million undocumented immigrants? With what army?”

He also wanted to ask Trump the rationale behind wanting to build a wall nearly 2,000 miles long when well over 40 percent of undocumented immigrants actually arrive legally – on temporary visas that they then overstay.

“The wall would be a waste of time and money,” Ramos said.

Ramos contends that he told those affiliated with the press conference that he intended to ask Trump questions about immigration, and no one objected. It was only after Trump heard his questions that he grew visibly annoyed and attempted to silence him, ordering him to sit down and be quiet, Ramos said.

“Never, in my more than 30 years as a journalist, have I been thrown out of a press conference. In my view, that happens only in dictatorships, not in the United States of America.”

Ramos said he agreed to return on the condition that he would be allowed to ask Trump questions. He said Trump answered, but gave few details.

“I’ve been accused of being an activist,” Ramos said. “But I am simply a journalist who asks questions. The matter at hand is that as a journalist, it’s essential to take a stand when you are confronted by racism, discrimination, corruption, public lies, dictatorship and human rights [violations]. What Trump is proposing could spark multiple, grave civil rights violations against millions of people.”

Ramos cited journalistic giants such as Edward R. Murrow, when he went against Sen. Joe McCarthy, and Walter Cronkite, when he stood up against the Vietnam War, and the Washington Post, when it exposed the wrongdoings in President Richard Nixon’s White House.

Quoting Nobel Prize winner Elie Wiesel, Ramos said: “Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim.”

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