2014 Miss Universe Paulina Vega of Colombia has joined the growing chorus to slam presidential aspirant and business mogul Donald Trump's "racist remarks" against Mexican immigrants.
Vega posted on her Instagram account, "I find Mr. Trump's comments unjust and hurtful. As a Colombian and as Miss Universe, I want to show my support and validate the sentiments of the Latin community."
She went on to say, "I strongly believe that dividing and categorizing humankind only holds it back. Acknowledging and embracing the differences that exist across humanity is the first step in real and substantial development. We must strive together in order to improve the common good."
However, Vega said she would retain her Miss Universe crown believing that the Miss Universe pageant works independently from its owner (Trump). Vega added, "The Miss Universe Organization works independently from its owners. For the past 64 years, they have created partnerships with great charity groups and have helped thousands of communities. Their legacy of uniting countries from around the world has been inspiring to many. If the Miss Universe Organization shared any anti-Latin sentiments or any type of racial biases, I wouldn't be in this position today."
Trump, who is eyeing a presidential nomination from the Republican Party, drew heavy flak last month over his inflammatory comments about Mexican immigrants in the U.S.
"When Mexico sends its people, they're not sending the best. "They're not sending you, they're sending people that have lots of problems and they're bringing those problems. They're bringing drugs, they're bringing crime. They're rapists and some, I assume, are good people, but I speak to border guards and they're telling us what we're getting," Trump declared during his presidential announcement.
Hollywood actress and activist America Ferrera, who is of Honduran descent, also condemned Trump's comments which she described as "incredibly ignorant and racist," reported ABC News.
Other Latino artists, including Ricky Martin, Shakira and Eva Longoria have voiced out their condemnation of Trump.
A number of businesses, including Univision, NBC Universal and Macy's have distanced themselves with Trump and have suspended their contracts with the controversial businessman.
This week, NASCAR became the latest entity to cut ties with Trump and said it would not hold its Xfinity and Camping World Truck series banquets at the Trump National Doral Miami as originally scheduled, reported The Week.
Camping World CEO Marcus Lemonis said in a statement, "Our company will not stand to support any person or organization that associates with such beliefs and we feel strongly about distancing ourselves from any negative and discriminatory comments made against any gender, ethnicity, age group or so forth." Lemonis also said he would boycott the awards if the venue is held at Trump's hotel and added, "I would hope that the entire NASCAR organization would agree with my sentiments."
On Saturday, Trump told Fox News he was surprised with the backlash he received over his comments but insisted he was standing by his words.
"The crime is raging and it's violent. And if you talk about it, it's racist," Trump said referring to the death of 32-year-old Kathryn Steinle in San Francisco by a Mexican illegal immigrant Francisco Sanchez who has been deported five times already.
Trump has also proposed to build a wall on the U.S-Mexico border.