Keith Avila from Sacramento, Calif., is Mexican-American and he wants everyone to know that race shouldn’t determine who someone votes for. In fact, it’s why Avila has decided to vote for Donald Trump.
“My whole family is from Mexico, my wife’s from Mexico, all her family’s from Mexico. I’m deeply rooted within the Mexican cultural and it’s never been a problem for me to say that I’m Mexican-American, I’ve never had a problem with it until I decided to vote for Donald Trump,” said Avila.
After he voiced his intention to vote for Trump, Avila faced sharp criticism, both from those who share his heritage as well as others, chiefly supporters of Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton.
“People are telling me that I’m fake, that I’m not actually Latino, that I’m just all kinds of stuff about race … there’s just this sort of idea, this fixed idea, where if you’re Mexican-American you’re not supposed to vote for Donald Trump,” Avila continued.
“Well let me tell you one thing, that is wrong. Not all people think the same, some people think differently,” Avila added.
In response to the criticisms Avila faced, he came up with an idea he believes succinctly illustrates how he can support Trump as a Mexican-American.
“I thought of an idea … people are not going to like me for this … I’m not going to blanket a whole group of people … but I do live in California so I know there are a lot of Democrats in this state … I know what I’m about to say right now is going to offend a lot of Bernie supporters,” Avila began.
“I’m Mexican-American, I’m Latino, and this is what I’m doing,” he said before reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. “My allegiance is to the United States of America, and I understand I’m Mexican-American, but I’m American first.”
Avila concluded his speech adding, “My family’s from Mexico… we love Mexico, we love the Mexican culture, and pledging the allegiance to the United States of America, that doesn’t mean that you do not like your heritage.”