John Leguizamo has always been known as the funny guy who knows how to keep it real — which is exactly what he does on this week’s episode of Inside My DNA.
The Nuyorican actor and comedian joined TIDAL editors, Jesus Trivino and Adelle Platon on their podcast to discuss Latinx culture, his off-Broadway show Latin History for Morons, and what it was like growing in one of the world’s most diverse cities — Queens, N.Y.
On Monday’s episode titled “Latinx State of Mind,” the three discuss how being proud of one’s culture plays into today’s political climate. Leguizamo stated that he believes a great thing about Trump is that his divisive rhetoric is actually making people pay attention to politics and get involved.
“You can’t be passive,” Leguizamo said with a laugh. “You see so many people motivated…to run for office and support. I never really paid attention to midterm elections, but this is the most important midterm election of my life.”
The Puerto Rican and Colombian performer also gave his commentary on what it means to him to be American.
“Being American means a lot of different things,” he said. “We were once the country that everyone was looking up to because we took care of everybody, we took everyone in. This is the country that didn’t discriminate against people of color or religion, and I still stand for that.”
When Trivino asked him what it meant to be an immigrant, we hear Leguizamo become even more impassioned.
“[Immigration is] the feel of this country,” Leguizamo said. “This whole country was founded by immigrants, the only people who aren’t immigrants are the Native Americans. They used to call the country before the white people came, they called it ‘ours.’ So everyone’s an immigrant. Even Trump’s grandparents came here through Ellis Island. We need to respect that [immigration fuels this country, makes this country great, with the infusion of all of these people.”
You can listen to the entire podcast on TIDAL here.