Coming Unglued: María Elena Salinas’ Thermonuclear Defense Of Jorge Ramos

August 30th, 2015 10:40 AM

Jorge Ramos’ longtime co-anchor shot all the way in on the Jorge Ramos trollfest, and her editorial column really has to be seen to be believed. Here it is full text in all its glory (link to Spanish-language original here)

María Elena Salinas: Trump vs. Ramos

The story of the day is personal to me. And this is so because its main protagonist is not Character X, but rather the man with whom I have shared both the stage and journalistic adventures for over three decades. And so I cannot be objective. I know Jorge Ramos better than do the women in his life (Sorry, Chiqui). I know what he thinks and how he thinks, I know what motivates him and his actions are predictable to me.

I was relaxing at my home on Tuesday, in the midst of a bittersweet vacation that began with an exotic trip to Europe but will end with tears when I bid farewell to my youngest daughter after helping her get settled in at her university. And so… I turned on the newscast and found it odd to see Enrique Acevedo sitting in for Jorge, because he had no vacations scheduled for that week and he never calls in sick. He must be out hunting for a story, I thought. Suddenly a friend sent me a text that said: “Trump just threw out Jorge Ramos, what horror”.

I didn’t need to see the images in order to know what had happened, I could already imagine it. At no time did I think, ‘Poor Jorge, they kicked him out’; but rather, ‘Trump has no idea of what is in store for him’. Jorge wanted a piece of Trump ever since that first speech where he announced his candidacy and said that Mexico sends criminals, drug traffickers and rapists over the border. In reality, most of us that work in Spanish-language media have wanted a piece of him (Trump), have wanted to question him and challenge him and show him that his statements are baseless. Moreover, that his words are the equivalent of a declaration of war against an important sector of American society. As in any war, an aggression against one of our own brings pride and nationalism to the surface. Insult Hispanic immigrants, with or without papers, and you insult all of us Hispanics. They are not alone.

It is within that context that Jorge showed up at Trump’s press conference.  He had previously sought an interview through his Al Punto and Fusion staff, even sending that famous handwritten note which Trump published, cell phone number and all. But accepting rejection has never been his strong suit. It was just a matter of time.

As he has done in the past when he believes there is injustice, intolerance, or corruption, Jorge was not going to remain silent. He went to Donald Trump’s press conference with a clear mission: to question him, denounce him, and expose him. And he did it; in front of everyone, live and in living color. He questioned the viability of his immigration proposals, denounced the lack of coherence in his plan and exposed his intolerance when Trump, unable to withstand his questions, had him kicked out.

As if that weren’t enough, Jorge managed to prove the reality of the argument that Trump’s xenophobic rhetoric is inciting racial hatred. During the few minutes that he stood outside of the conference room from which he had been kicked out, an individual who seemed to be part of Trump’s team told Jorge to get out of his country.  It could’ve been the accent or the fact that he works for Univision that led that individual to believe that Jorge was a foreigner, but he was wrong. This is his country, too.

Those who criticize Jorge for having stood up to ask questions out of turn need to understand something: he did not go there to play by Trump’s rules. Believe me, I know him. What interests him is what he always describes as “the big picture”, which could be translated into something like the greater goal. The Trump vs. Ramos fight made global headlines. Now Trump will surely grant Jorge the interview. At the end of the day, he loves to be the center of attention. Mission accomplished. The rest is small stuff.


Let all of that just soak in for a second.

Set aside, for a moment, the floridity and verbosity of Salinas’ unhinged rant. There are several things at play here that I want to call your attention to:

Notice the “wanting a piece of Trump” rhetoric. To be clear, Univision’s news division never harbored any illusions of being fair or objective. But the admission is unprecedented. We heard no such admission, for example, during or after the network’s vendetta against Marco Rubio, despite clear evidence that such a vendetta existed.

Salinas confirms Ramos’ mission, which was NOT to make inquiries of Trump, but instead to “question, denounce, and expose”. Ramos admitted as much both during his interview with Megyn Kelly and during his series of self-congratulatory interviews at Univision.

This is important because it blows up the narrative crafted to cast Ramos as a Rosa Parks-like figure of brave resistance, which maintains that Ramos got tossed for bravely asking tough questions. It should be noted that Ramos never asked a question during his initial exchange with Trump, managing only to fire off his litany of “you cannots” before getting tossed.

Note also Salinas’ ”declaration of war” rhetoric. To which nation is she referring, when she talks about “nationalism and pride”? Is she positing that the Latino ethno-political construct is now its own nationality, which demands an allegiance vis a vis allegiance to the United States? The very next sentence would seem to confirm that. If nothing else, the Trump candidacy has already performed an immensely valuable service to our Republic: it has blown Univision’s biases sky high, and exposed them for all the world to see.