LATINO VOICES
12/22/2016 01:23 pm ET

17 Of The Most Spectacular Latino Clapbacks In 2016

Latinos held their own. 💪 🏾

Between Donald Trump’s victory after a xenophobic presidential campaign and the prejudice that Latinos have faced both in Hollywood and beyond, it’s easy to lose sight of all the amazing things that happened this year. 

In 2016, Latinos held their own and pushed back against prejudice, racism and injustices with spectacular clapbacks. And that’s something worth celebrating.

Let’s revisit 17 amazing clapbacks by Latinos in 2016: 

  • When America Ferrera shut down a reporter’s tone deaf question
    Getty
    While chatting with Gloria Steinem at the 2016 MAKERS conference in February, America Ferrera shared a head-scratching anecdote.

    She explained how one reporter was genuinely puzzled by how the actress would choose a presidential candidate to vote for if both Ted Cruz and Hillary Clinton became nominees. Her response was perfect. 
  • When Ana Navarro held nothing back and called Trump a racist
    NBC NewsWire via Getty Images
    Republican commentator Ana Navarro repeatedly expressed her contempt towards Donald Trump throughout the 2016 election. And she held nothing back on-air and online. Just over a month before the election, Navarro demolished the candidate calling him a "flat-out racist!" in both English and Spanish. 

    "He is a racist," she continued. "He is a misogynist. He has said horrible things about women. He has said horrible things about immigrants, about Hispanics. He has yet to say one good thing about immigrants ... Republicans need to speak up and people need to know that not all Republicans are represented by the hostile, vile voice of Donald Trump."
  • A Chicana poet's epic takedown of Trump's campaign
    Getty
    Chicana slam poet Mercedez Holtry gave then-GOP candidate Donald Trump a history lesson with her poem "We’re Here to Stay." She not only attacked his campaign slogan but his xenophobic attitudes, and vowed that Latinos would not stand down.
  • Dascha Polanco's breakdown of race versus ethnicity
    Santiago Felipe via Getty Images
    During an interview in March with Power 105.1 The Breakfast Club, host Charlamagne Tha God was confused about what being "Afro-Latina" meant and why actress Dascha Polanco identified as both Black and Dominican. 

    "Because I’m from the Dominican Republic but I am a ... we’re talking about where you’re from, your country, and you’re talking about race/ethnicity, right?" she explained after he asked multiple times. "So I am Afro-Latina."
  • When this Stanford student shut down his dentist’s prejudice
    Getty
    After his dentist tried to undercut Guillermo Comarillo's accomplishments by implying he'd been accepted to Standford because of his ethnic and low-income background, the Chicago-based student shut down his dentist in an open letter on Facebook.

    "I may have grown up in a neighborhood that doesn’t have many young kids going to schools like Stanford," he wrote. "But it doesn’t mean that people where I come from don’t have the potential to succeed at Stanford."
  • When Maria Hinojosa slammed a Trump advisor for saying ‘illegals’
    Mike Coppola via Getty Images
    In October, journalist Maria Hinojosa shut down a Donald Trump advisor on-air. When he used the word "illegals" when speaking about undocumented immigrants, Hinojosa first told him that  "illegals" is "not a noun."

    "The reason why I say this, is not because I learned it from some radical Latino or Latina studies professor when I was a college student," she continued. "I learned it from Elie Wiesel, who survived the Holocaust, who said, 'you know what? The first thing they did was that they declared the Jews to be an illegal people.' And that’s what we’re talking about at this point."
  • Sonia Sotomayor’s epic dissent of a ruling that favored "lawless police conduct"
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    In June, the Supreme Court ruled on Utah v. Strieff, in favor of the police state. The case asked the justices to decide if evidence found during an unlawful police stop could be used against the person in possession of it. Sonia Sotomayor wrote a scathing dissent on the case's ruling.
  • When this Latina trolled Trump's son with a Spanish-language shirt
    At a North Carolina rally in October, Annie Cardelle posed for a photo with Eric Trump while wearing a shirt that said "Latina contra Trump," which translates to "Latina against Trump."

    "While we were surprised that no one really noticed, I really think that it stands as a testament to the lack of diversity surrounding that campaign," Cardelle said.
  • When Mexican director Alejandro G. Iñárritu said he "pitied" Trump
    Getty
    In January, Mexican director Alejandro G. Iñárritu addressed Donald Trump's troubling remarks about immigrants. In an interview with WNYC’s Studio 360, he said it's "part of the ignorance that is based on fear, and prejudice to find the otherness, to be threatened."
  • When John Leguizamo called out the hypocrisy of asking minorities to assimilate
    Axelle/Bauer-Griffin via Getty Images
    In a video interview with Big Think, John Leguizamo pointed out why it's hypocritical for people to expect minorities to assimilate. 

    "As a Latin person ― minorities, black people have to do it as well ― we have to immerse ourselves in white culture and learn about white culture," Leguizamo said in the video posted in July. "It’s all we were taught in school and in movies. And so we learn, but it’s not reciprocal, you know? It’s not a reciprocal thing that happens that white culture wants to learn about Latin culture or black culture."
  • When Eva Longoria skewered Donald Trump in an epic DNC speech
    Getty
    Actress Eva Longoria took Donald Trump to task during her speech at the Democratic National Committee. In her powerfully personal remarks, she skewered the Republican nominee for his infamous remarks on Mexican immigrants, referring to them as "rapists" and "criminals."
  • This poet’s perfect response to those who say he doesn’t look Latino
    Vallery Jean via Getty Images
    Colombian poet Carlos Andrés Gómez was speechless when a woman asked him where he was from because she'd "never met a Hispanic who looks like you." In response, he wrote a powerful viral poem that broke down stereotypes about Latinos. 

    "I was honestly so shocked by how ignorant the questions were I was dumbstruck - this [poem] is what I wished I had said to her," he told HuffPost.
  • Latina's classy response to woman who called her mom a "wetback" in a parking lot
    Getty
    After her mother was the target of a racist rant in a parking lot, Wendy Flores posted a video of the incident and wrote a moving message on Facebook to the woman who had discriminated against her family. 

    "[My parents] have taught us to help people and to work hard to earn the life we want," Flores wrote. "My parents have sacrificed so much so much for us and it breaks my heart the way they get treated because of their broken English."
  • When Alicia Machado took on Trump during the 2016 election
    Matt Winkelmeyer via Getty Images
    Former Miss Universe Alicia Machado very publicly came back at Donald Trump, who she accused of calling her "Miss Piggy" because of her weight and "Miss Housekeeping" because of her accent back when she wore the crown at age 19. 

    Machado became a thorn on Trump's side, and endured more offensive remarks (He called her "disgusting" and accused her of having a sex tape) from him during the campaign in the hopes of stopping his election. The current president-elect even doubled down on his comments over Machado’s Miss Universe weight during an interview with "Fox and Friends."

    Through it all Machado remained classy and composed, aligning with Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton to release video proof of the types of comments Trump has made towards her in the past. She also became a U.S. Citizen in May in order to vote against him.
  • This undocumented valedictorian's shrewd take down of Trump
    Getty
    During her high school graduation, Larissa Martinez gave a speech that was both moving and revealing. The Yale-bound valedictorian revealed she was undocumented and asked classmates to realize that her legal status didn't make her any less human.

    Martinez also took time in her viral speech to take down Donald Trump's campaign rhetoric. "America can be great again without the construction of a wall built on hatred and prejudice," she said. 
  • When America Ferrera and Eva Longoria called out Hollywood racism
    Handout via Getty Images
    America Ferrera and Eva Longoria joined forces to make a huge statement during January's Golden Globes. The actresses' funny bit on stage specifically addressed Hollywood's tendency to confuse Latina actresses. Watch the video here or below.
  • Lizzie Velasquez's moving response to a cruel meme with her photo
    Getty
    Lizzie Velasquez has dealt with cyberbullying since she was a teenager, and she's dedicated her life to spreading love in the face of hate.

    But when she found a cruel meme with a photo of herself online in December, she used her voice to give social media users how seemingly innocent actions can harms others. 

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