By: Alexandro Gonzalez & Gabriela Sosa, Social Media Department
While not all Hispanics vote the same, nor they all share the same political concerns, it is safe to say that Donald Trump’s recent comments have succeeded in leaving the largest Hispanic group of origin, Mexicans, feeling more than a little angry. Other Hispanic figures, like popular musician J Balvin and Roselyn Sanchez, who was set to co-host the event, dropped out of the popular Miss USA pageant and spoke out in solidarity. Along with prominent Latino figures, companies have also taken a stance. NBC Universal, Macy’s, Miss USA sponsor, Farouk Systems, and Mexican Mogul, Carlos Slim who was working on on-going projects with the presidential candidate, have all made moves to “dump Trump.”
Donald Trump may not have been concerned with the “Hispanic vote” that is sought after by many other politicians, especially because historically, Hispanics have voted Democratic in both the Presidential and Midterm elections; but the Hispanic buying power should be considered and of concern to many. Losing and alienating the Hispanic buyer when it comes to marketing and direct sales can have a tremendous impact. When it comes to sales, Hispanics make up nearly 1.5 trillion dollars of federal spending. The importance of this cannot be understated. Companies like Macy’s and Farouk Systems understood this and they too took a stance.
You’ve heard it before and you’ll continue to hear it; Hispanics are one of the largest growing minority groups. They are projected to make up 19% of the U.S. population by 2020. Whether Donald Trump’s comments succeeded in mobilizing Latinos to have their voices heard politically remains to be seen; we have however seen a swift social mobilization and outcry, from eloquent open-letters written by rappers to Facebook posts from first-generation individuals proud of their immigrant parents. The decisions of NBC, J Balvin, and others that put their foot down were as much political statements as economic ones.
Despite the controversy, Miss USA was held and Miss Oklahoma took the crown on Sunday, July 13th. The pageant went on with contestants determined to not let their hard work be deterred by the comments of one. “This isn’t about Trump. This isn’t about politics… this is about something we’ve prepared for our whole lives, but as a Latina I was hurt by the comments because my parents are immigrants. They came from the Dominican Republic, but I’m here for Miss USA,” Miss New York stated recently. The show may have gone on for Miss USA, but one thing is clear; whether you’re a popular department store chair, a company that specializes in hair-care products, or a billionaire: there is no room in the business world for alienating and offensive comments.