May 16, 2024 at 11:25 a.m.

The danger of a single story

Dear Editor,

Former president Donald Trump demonizes undocumented immigrants and promises to deport millions if he is reelected.  He plans to build detention camps and to use the U.S. military.

Many undocumented workers can be found on Wisconsin farms.  In her Wisconsin Examiner article, "Getting past toxic partisanship: Dairy farmers and undocumented workers," Ruth Coniff writes:

"Dairy farmers in Wisconsin know that their immigrant workers aren’t replacing anybody. They’ve tried hard, without success, to find U.S.-born workers who want to shovel manure and milk cows every day starting at 4 a.m."

Coniff explains that often "deep, personal relationships" develop between farmers and their Mexican workers.

Will Trump round them up as well?  According to Trump adviser Tom Homan, former acting head of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, “People need to be deported. No one should be off the table.”

Chimamanda Adichie's powerful TED Talk,  "The Danger of a Single Story," asserts that "Power is the ability not just to tell the story of another person, but to make it the definitive story of that person."

This is what Trump has done with his repeated and hateful rhetoric.

Let's heed Adichie's words: "Stories matter.  Many stories matter. Stories have been used to dispossess and to malign.  But stories can also be used to empower, and to humanize. Stories can break the dignity of a people.  But stories can also repair that broken dignity."

Terry Hansen

Milwaukee, WI