The NYT Scrubs Anti-Blackness From Jorge Ramos’ Op-Ed

Univision senior anchor Jorge Ramos has a habit of saying one thing to American media and another overseas. And it appears that The New York Times got wind of his overseas remarks after publication of his latest op-ed. 

The opinion piece, originally published on August 7th, was entitled “Can a Latina Girl Dream of Being President of the United States?” Shortly after publication, the op-ed’s title was changed to “What Sonia Sotomayor Told a 10-Year-Old Girl.”

The op-ed was published with Joe Biden’s decision on a running mate fast approaching, and in the midst of the Susan Rice boomlet. Congresswoman Karen Bass (D-CA) had already faded after revelations of her fondness for Cuban tyrant Fidel Castro, and Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) was days away from being selected. 

The NYT op-ed did center around the little girl’s exchange with Justice Sotomayor, but as was the norm with a Ramos column, he proposed a big government solution to a societal problem: in this case, passage of the Equal Rights Amendment in order to ensure more women in public office. Ramos left unclear how the ERA will accomplish that, exactly, but it doesn’t matter. What matters was that we do something.

None of that mattered, of course, in relation to the op-ed’s original title. Are 10-year-old Latina girls barred from dreaming about being elected to the presidency, or about whatever else they might want to achieve? Of course not. More than anything, the op-ed projects Ramos’ racialist sense of entitlement. Look at what he said at the start of the 116th Congress:

 

 

Now there will be 37 Hispanic congressmen representing us. This is a record, but the truth is there’s still a long way to go. In the Senate, for example, we only have four senators of Latino origin when in reality there should be at least eighteen. 

As we noted back then:

…this is the same Jorge Ramos that has, in the past, accused two of those four Senators of being race-traitors, and who cheered their respective defeats in the 2016 Republican presidential primary. As we explained in our review of Ramos’ interview for Spain’s El Intermedio, you can’t whine about a lack of proportional representation while at the same time dismissing half of the existing representation in the Senate as traitors.

Ramos’ racialist reductionism and wish-casting doesn’t take into account such things as the dynamics in each of the states where Hispanics have run and won, nor does he ask questions in the states where they don’t. In California, for example, State Senate President Pro Tempore Kevin de León challenged incumbent U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein. However, we don’t see Ramos questioning why Feinstein defeated de León, nor do we expect to see a post-mortem of this race in his weekly column. Such questions might prove to be uncomfortable.

Quite simply, Ramos’ editors at The Times tried to sand some of the sharp edges off of his rigid racialism. But they can’t hide what he told Spain’s El Pais days prior, which was that African-Americans “already had a president” and that a Latina in the White House (preferably AOC) is the next “giant step” for America:

RODRIGUEZ MANTILLA: Do you hope to see a Latino president?

RAMOS: Of course! Not just to see one, but I hope I’m able to cover one as a journalist. There are more Latinos than African-Americans. They’ve already had one. The next giant step would be to see a Latina in the White House.

RODRIGUEZ MANTILLA: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, once she’s old enough to run, after turning 35?

RAMOS: She’s part of the generation that my 31-year-old daughter Paola belongs to.

RODRIGUEZ MANTILLA: How do you define them?

RAMOS: Direct, fearless. They tell it like it is. They don’t wait. They show themselves to be very impatient. They handle cell phones and social media like no one else, and will quickly seize control from those who hold it now. So much so that I hope they’re in even more of a hurry.

It appears that Jorge Ramos, seeing racism everywhere he looks, has now become what he most harshly criticizes.

The New York Times is fond of procuring reader feedback for the columns they publish- and can be reached at letters@nytimes.com.

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