Say no to Trump and stand with Maine’s Somali community

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has not been having a good week. Then again, when one has reached the age of 70 without obtaining a filter, common sense or a shred of decency, and decides to run for the leader of the free world, the weeks might get a little rocky.

After a week of horrific gaffes that has the Republican party shaking its collective head in fear or frustration or a combination of both, Trump decided to bring his special brand of ignorance and intolerance to the state with the oldest and whitest population in the union, perhaps hoping to find kindred spirits in his silo of fear and whiteness.

The Trump train of fear that stokes the fires of intolerance sadly didn’t let us down as the Bangor Daily News reports,  Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump painted a frightening image of Maine’s Somali refugees in a dark speech here on Thursday, saying the U.S. is admitting people from “among the most dangerous places in the world” and that “has to stop.”

The New York billionaire’s remarks underlined his nativist platform that includes calls for halting Muslim immigration from certain countries, a border wall with Mexico and mass deportation of undocumented immigrants.”

Somalis in Maine are Mainers. Full stop. They are our friends, neighbors, coworkers and family and right now we need to send a unified message to Trump and people who support his hateful rhetoric that their message of anger, exclusion and intolerance is not acceptable.

Here’s a message Portland’s mayor, Ethan Strimling, received, and I think it’s not just worth reading; it’s a call for those who care about our Somali brothers and sisters and who can show up to show up…literally:

“Somalis have been part of Maine since the early 1990s. We are citizens of this country and members of this community. We are participants in all sectors of the economy. We are professionals, laborers, students, business owners, veterans and members of law enforcement. We care about our communities and we are here to stay. Trump’s rhetoric at his rally in Portland on Thursday was very destructive. It is damaging to the psyche of our youth to hear a major party presidential nominee condemn our culture and religion, especially while standing next to the governor of our state. We condemn his name calling, scapegoating and the lies perpetrated by his campaign. We will be holding a press conference to discuss this issue further on Friday, August 5, at 2:30 on the steps of City Hall.”

Come out and support our Somali brothers and sisters and send a message that the hate that Trump is peddling is not acceptable.