LETTER: Goya should not be facing boycotts after voicing support for Trump, ex-WNY mayor says


In a letter to the editor, former West New York Mayor Felix Roque says that Goya Foods should not be facing boycotts after voicing support for President Donald Trump (R).

Dear Editor,

As the former two-term Mayor of the Town of West New York, New Jersey, I became very disheartened by the recent protests and calls for the boycott of Goya products. These protests against Goya’s products was in response to the comments by the CEO, Mr. Unanue’s, praising President Donald Trump.

Goya is a great company that has always said “presente” when I have called upon them to assist me in providing holiday food to my constituents and our brothers in Latin America in difficult times.

During my 8 years as mayor, there were numerous occasions wherein I have called upon Goya to assist my senior citizens with food baskets during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.

I vividly remember the look of joy in their eyes when I handed them the food because for many of these families it was their only nutritious holiday meal.

There were also several collaborative philanthropic activities where Goya joined me in assisting Earthquake victims in Mexico and Ecuador. Once again, Goya proved to be a reliable partner rendering assistance to those most in need.

As an immigrant to this great country, I have come to appreciate the wonderful rights enshrined in our constitution.

Having come from a totalitarian communist regime, freedom of speech is most significant to me. Mr. Unanue was simply exercising his constitutional right of free speech.

It appears to me that it is not right to take such draconian measures against a company that has done so much to advance our Latino/Hispanic community.

We should not act in haste and first consider the totality of the circumstances.

Goya’s CEO should not be judged by one instance but rather by his lengthy history of philanthropy assisting Latino communities locally and abroad during times of need.

Very truly yours,

Felix E. Roque, M.D.


  1. Totally agree with Dr. Roque’s comments- Goya is a great company, always helpful to Latino Communities and
    those in need and Mr. Unanue is entitled to his constitutional right of free speech.

  2. Dear Former Mayor Roque,

    Like President Trump, you graduated from the New York Military Academy in Cornwall, NY. Unlike Mr. Trump, who saught and received multiple draft deferments for the Vietnam War, claiming bone spurs even though he managed to play basketbal at college, you wore the uniform, first as an enlisted soldier, later as a commissioned officer.

    It is great that Goya has donated food on multiple occassions. What is mystifying is why you are mum on the the specic reasons why so many other Cuban Americans, as well as other Latino Americans are very justifiably venting their displeasure at Mr. Unanue’s blanket praise of President Trump while having nothing to say about the very real injustices Mr. Trump and his policies have had on MANY undocumented Latinos fleeing gang violence from their homelands, only to be herded in cages and cruelly seperated from their families. When the CEO of Goya finally realizes through diminished revenues that his position on Trump is seriously flawed, and publicly says so, then perhaps the boycott will end. As a medical Dr. can you condone what Trump did to put children in cages a d seperate them from their families?

    Patrick Cullen

  3. He is entitled to free speech and the american people are entitled to disagree by boycotting the products. The company obviously supports a dictator no different than if he expressed love for Adolph Hitler and Nazis. I will never buy their products and that is my right as an american.

  4. Roque your a Communist POS.. Go Away. Your Opinion is not needed. You tricked the People in WNY already. Never again. Seek help for your lies you even believe.

  5. Trump has done more harm to the working citizens of this country, to our justice system, to civil liberties, to our concept of nationhood and to our international reputation than anyone who ever held public office. Anyone who supports Trump supports those policies. He has a solid record of supporting dictators abuses of their citizens.

    This week alone he unleashed on the citizens of Portland an army of unidentified, unconstitutional secret brown-shirt thugs

    Anyone who supports the business of those Trump enablers is hurting themselves and this country. How long will it be before they are here on our own streets arresting people without any legal authority?

    As much as I love Goya products – and as much as I admire how well the run their business – I will not – I can not in good conscience – support them Goya.

  6. Roque you corrupt POS shut the hell up you were indicted twice in 8 years . Your a disgrace and should never comment on people getting hurt. That’s all you did as mayor was hurt people especially the people that got you into office . Now thanks to us again we got you out of office , we didn’t forget that’s what you get for hurting people for no reason , that’s what you get for listening to your POS driver (BF) and your felony convicted pal. You NOT Mayor anymore you low life . Go steel mo ty from your patients like you been doing for years ! N

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