Opinion: Rep. Steve King’s comments harmful

By Martina Gutierrez.

Many people have asked me, “What made you come to Iowa?”

My answer has always been, “My husband, who is a red-headed Mexican-American from South Texas.”

We met in Topeka, Kan. on a Greyhound bus about 12 years ago. We have had our ups and downs before getting married last year, with our fair share of the “party life.” I’ve seen how many drugs can come into the U.S. and the effects it has on people, but not all drugs are brought in by “Illegal Immigrants,” or that all those from Mexico are the cause of all dirty crimes, as Iowa Representative Steve King makes it seem.

Before I get to Steve King’s comments, I want to mention how excited my 15-year old daughter was about going back to school this year, but yet dreading it at the same time. Excited to have her MacBook back and to see her friends, but dreading it because she feels racism at school.

I remember her telling me, “Every school I’ve been to here in Iowa, people seem to be racist against Mexicans,” and asking me, “Why do I have to be Mexican?”

That is when I told her she is not “Mexican” but Spanish-American (Spaniard). She turned her frown upside down and said, “Wow! I’m not Mexican?! AWESOME!” I then told her, “But your stepdad and brother are.”

Her thoughts about Mexicans and Mexican culture echo what many people in Iowa think. Steve King’s words are only going to make people in Iowa more racist against Mexicans, not just “Illegal Immigrants.”

In my opinion, his words were not only against Illegal Immigrants, but specifically towards the Mexicans in general.

My husband works in construction with many “Illegal Immigrants” who have visas to work here in the U.S., and are very hard workers. They do their job, and are not all bad people.

So, for Steve King to point fingers and talk about how many people die from “Illegal Immigrants,” he should first do his research on how many people die, not only in the U.S. but throughout the whole world, everyday.

The statistics: 146,000 people died yesterday, 146,000 died today, and another 146,000 will die tomorrow.

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