Donald Trump says, racistly, that Judge Gonzalo Curiel cannot give him a fair hearing in court because he is of Mexican heritage. Specifically, Trump says that the reason Curiel (and presumably all other persons of Mexican heritage) cannot be trusted to give him a fair hearing is because he, Donald Trump, is so tough on the border, since he’s promised to build a wall.
Here is what we are learning about Gonzalo Curiel: I don’t know what kind of judge he is and maybe he really is liberal. I have seen no evidence offered of that other than the fact that he has ruled against Trump and his lawyers, but maybe it is true.
One thing we DO know is that Curiel is kind of a badass, and has done more to actually fight border crime than Donald Trump could ever dream of. Curiel, in fact, was so hated as a prosecutor by the Mexican cartels that they tried to have him assassinated:
For much of a year, Gonzalo P. Curiel, then a federal prosecutor in California, lived officially in hiding.
He hunkered down for a while on a naval base and in other closely guarded locations under the protection of United States marshals. Even his siblings did not know exactly where he was at times.
The reason: In a secretly taped conversation inside a San Diego prison, a man accused of being a gunman for a Mexican drug cartel said that he had received permission from his superiors to have Mr. Curiel assassinated.
How gung ho was Curiel to put cartel members behind bars? He notoriously argued in court that information that was (almost certainly) obtained by torture in Mexico should be admissible in U.S. Courts to help convict these thugs:
Judge Curiel was a hard-charging prosecutor at a time when the American authorities were trying to help Mexico confront the Arellano Félix brothers, the heads of a murderous cartel that controlled a torrent of narcotics coming into the Western United States. In a period when Mexico was reluctant to send its drug lords for trial in the United States, Mr. Curiel’s job involved working with informants and sometimes-corrupt Mexican officials to win convictions in this country and in Mexico.
In one 1990s case, when he was pushing to extradite two men accused of being Arellano gunmen to Mexico, he found himself defending witness testimony against the men that had most likely been obtained through torture by the Mexican police.
“The government is not here to deny there is a possibility of torture,” Mr. Curiel told a federal judge. “But the forum for those allegations to be aired is the government of Mexico.”
Meanwhile, what has Trump actually done to improve the situation at the border? Well, he promised to build a wall – a promise that he (allegedly) backed down from under pressure from… the New York Times editorial board.
Here’s what I’m saying: if you’re serious about supporting people who are tough on the crime that has resulted from the illegal immigration issue, you should support Judge Gonzalo Curiel way more than the orange-faced clown who is attacking him in the media.