Donald Trump seems to have a weird idea of who’s entering through our borders, claiming on Thursday that a good chunk of them are people “who don’t speak languages.”
“Everybody I speak to says how horrible it is,” Trump said, adding that there were “millions of people” arriving from “places unknown, from “countries unknown” with no language.
That is, at best, a woefully missed opportunity for a one-of-a-kind anthropological study, or at worst, an unfortunate admission from the reputed monolinguist. Trump apparently was having a tough time recalling any of the 350 different languages spoken by U.S. communities—maybe chief among them Spanish, which ranks as the second-most popular language in the nation, and which the vast majority of migrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border speak.
“We have languages coming into our country, nobody that speaks those languages,” Trump droned. “They’re truly foreign languages. Nobody speaks them.”
In the last few months, Trump has made a number of increasingly worrying verbal gaffes, including claiming that he would stop banks from “debanking” Americans, mixing up former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and his only remaining rival in the GOP race, former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, and describing his plan for America’s missile defense system by going “ding, ding, ding, ding, ding, ding.…Boom. OK. Missile launch. Woosh. Boom.”
He has also appeared with mysterious, unexplained red sores on his hands that political commentators couldn’t help but notice looked an awful lot like syphilis.
But have no fear: the 77-year-old wants you to know he is totally, undoubtedly, mentally all there. He recently “aced” a cognitive test that required him to correctly identify a giraffe, a tiger, and a whale. According to Trump, that meant his “mind is stronger now than it was 25 years ago.” In reality, that test is meant to measure dementia or cognitive decline, and it has never included the combination of animals Trump mentioned.