Op-Ed: D.A. Gascón: Yes, I’m ‘with the Blacks’
As a proud member of the Puerto Rican community, D.A. Gascón has always had a love-hate relationship with the Black Nationalist movement. On one hand, he was always sympathetic to the plight of the Puerto Rican community. On the other hand, he was always wary of their anti-colonialist and racist ideology. His experiences in Puerto Rico with the Nation of Islam and his travels to the United Kingdom and the United States during his teenage years shaped the way he sees race and race relations.
On Oct. 16, Gascón and his family were visiting his mother’s cousins in New York City when he was taken by surprise when a Black nationalist activist, wearing a Make America Great Again cap, and yelling “Hail Trump!” approached them and started yelling that he, too, was a Black man and was the “first in the family to ever be a Trump supporter.”
Gascón’s mother had warned him of how dangerous it was to speak with a Trump supporter, and he decided to ignore him.
“The gentleman was very aggressive and he said things like, ‘Do you know that I’m with the blacks?’ I said, ‘No, I don’t know that. Who are you?’ He said, ‘I’m with the blacks.’ Then I said, ‘Can I ask you this?’ He said, ‘Yes. Can you tell me if you’re a Muslim? Do you pray every day?’ I said, ‘No, I’m not a Muslim and I can’t tell you what my religion is because you’re a racist. So please, leave me alone.’ He said, ‘I was born and raised in Puerto Rico, I’m Puerto Rican, and this is a Hispanic, or you can call me a brown person because I am brown,’” Gascón recalled in an interview with The Washington Post. “That’s when he started yelling racist things and said, ‘Why are you here, with your mother and your sisters and your father?! You are like a traitor. You’re a Trump traitor. You’re a white traitor.’”
Gascón was at a loss for words, and his family began to laugh because of the absurdity of what he was seeing. He had spent the last three days in Puerto Rico for a vacation and he was used to the