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Mike Barnhill

Ashland

Dear Editor:

In June 2015, while Trump was a presidential candidate, he said, "When Mexico sends its people, they're not sending their best." He added: "They're sending people that have a lot of problems, and they're bringing those problems with us. They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're bringing rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.

Isn't this statement by Donald Trump, from someone who's never lived in Mexico and knows little about its people, sound about like this comparison? North Korea's leader Kim Jong-Un calling Americans SOBs, but ending with, we assume some of you are good people? Not exactly the kind of statement to endear the people you're wanting trade or nuclear agreements with.

At the end of the Mexican War (1846-48) a young first lieutenant named Ulysses S. Grant rode 4 miles from a small village called Tacubaya to Mexico City to sight see. Besieged by beggars, Grant deplored the gross inequality of Mexican society and instinctively sided with the oppressed.

"With a soil and climate scarcely equaled in the world," he protested, Mexico "has more poor and starving subjects who are willing to work than any country in the world. The rich keep down the poor with a hardness of heart that is incredible."

Whatever his criticisms of their society, Grant never regarded the Mexicans as racial inferiors.

This comparison of Mexico's inhabitants by President Trump and President U.S. Grant illustrates the difference in attitude toward those not as blessed as America. That difference in attitude separates the decent to inferior type president to the great presidents. Grant was a great leader and president and Trump is not.

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