Have you been told to 'go back' to your country?

KATU asked people on the streets of Portland whether they've been told to "go back" to their country? (KATU Photo)

President Donald Trump's tweets Sunday is triggering emotional responses across the country, including Portland.

"Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came,” Trump said in a series of tweets targeting four progressive congresswomen, all of whom are American citizens.

"Go back to your country, " is a trope some consider racist. A KATU News crew spoke with folks who shared their personal stories of trauma that spurred from that statement.

The crew asked people around Portland if they've been told to "go back" to their countries.

"I was thinking about all the times in Medford when someone told me to either go to Africa or go back to my country," said Tara Porchia, who was born in California.

Porchia says America is her country; she's never been to Africa.

"People saying micro-aggressive things like asking to touch my hair, asking where I'm from, asking my nationality, people outright just calling me the N-word," she said.

Racism comes in many forms; it's not just based on skin color, but also how you speak.

"'You have an accent, why don't you go back to where you're from,' and he said something 'go back to Latvia.' Why would I go back to Latvia? I'm not even from Latvia," said Berand Durrwshterk, who was born and raised in Germany. "It gave me a better appreciation for people who probably hear this more often. In fact, our son is half Filipino, and he got called a 'beaner,' so our family has experienced it multiple times. But me as a white male to hear something like this is new."

Will Wright was born in the United Kingdom. He's also a white man who says he has faced discrimination in America.

"I was talking about immigration with my family and a lady at the table behind overheard, she said, 'You should go back to your own country,'" said Wright. "It's really strange to actually realize that people are that insane about it; it doesn't matter who you are, they'll just tell you to go back home."

A woman approached the KATU News crew and said she's an American citizen by way of Romania. She said people have even questioned her young, American-born daughter's citizenship.

"They are our future doctors and politicians, and police officers and they shouldn't be treated like that," she said.

A similar question was posed on Twitter:

More than 600 people responded, nearly 60 percent said 'no,' but 40 percent said they have.

"We have to have faith in America, the American ideals and American values and immigration is the bedrock foundation of that," said a man who was born in Baltimore.

On Tuesday, House Democrats brought a resolution to the floor condemning Trump for his tweets about four minority congresswomen.

They have a history of criticizing the president.

The resolution passed 240-187.

Only four members of the GOP signed on. Greg Walden, Oregon's lone Republican in Congress, was not one of them.

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