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NBC News special correspondent and former “NBC Nightly News” anchor Tom Brokawreceived scathing backlash Sunday for remarks he made on a “Meet the Press” segment about Hispanic assimilation.
Brokaw, 78, made his remarks during a panel discussion about the fight for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
“On the Republican side, a lot of people see the rise of an extraordinary, important new constituent in American politics, Hispanics, who will come here and all be Democrats,” he said.
“Also, I hear, when I push people a little harder, ‘Well, I don’t know whether I want brown grandbabies.’ I mean, that’s also a part of it. It’s the intermarriage that is going on and the cultures that are conflicting with each other,” he added.
Brokaw went on to say, “I also happen to believe that the Hispanics should work harder at assimilation. That’s one of the things I’ve been saying for a long time. You know, they ought not to be just codified in their communities but make sure that all their kids are learning to speak English, and that they feel comfortable in the communities. And that’s going to take outreach on both sides, frankly.”
His comments quickly drew strong reactions on Twitter, with many decrying what he had said.
“(Tom Brokaw) my mom worked harder at learning English than most teens in their HS ‘foreign language’ class,” NYU adjunct professor Carolina J. Morena tweeted. “I’m fluent in Spanish & English, majored in French & studied Portuguese. Maybe the US should try harder to assimilate into global society. #ImmigrationIsTheFuture Join us!”