On the campaign trail in 2015, candidate Donald Trump referred to Mexicans as “criminals” and “rapists,” inciting disdain from Hispanics, Latinos, and other racial groups. This rhetoric became a thread throughout not only the campaign but also Trump’s entire presidency, marking a sharp turn from racially coded dog-whistle politics to more explicit white xenophobia.
A volume of essays edited by sociologist Doug Massey explores how America arrived at its current crossroads in politics and charts a way forward. This includes putting undocumented citizens on the path to citizenship and dismantling the dysfunctional “crimmigation” politics and practices implemented by both Republicans and Democrats alike.
In this episode, Doug unpacks all that’s in the volume, which was published in the 2021 spring issue of Daedalus by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. It’s available free online.