May 27, 2008

¡Ask a Mexican! Stand proud, not ashamed

Q
Dear
Mexican:
I’m a Mexican-American, but I always lie and tell people my
ancestors were from Spain and immigrated to the United States in the
1920s. My whole family says this. We feel embarrassed if we tell
people that our heritage is Mexican, because Mexicans in the USA are
so dirty, mostly gang bangers, and they spray graffiti everywhere —
my family is not like this. My father went to UCLA and I’m going to
USC right now. Should I face my background and tell people the truth?
—Coconut
Cabrón

A
Dear
Wab:
Felicidades

you are officially the most pendejo
person ever to ask the Mexican! I’m fine with people labeling
themselves whatever they want, given ethnic identity is fluid like
water (special shout-out to all the pochos
that must endure the “You’re not a ‘real Mexican’” bigotry
of Mexicans and Chicano yaktivists but who are nevertheless proud of
their heritage), but you’re just stupid. You obviously don’t
consider yourself Spaniard, since you begin your pregunta
by identifying yourself as a Mexican-American, so labeling yourself
Spanish is a lie borne out of vanity rather than pride. You then
state, without inserting any qualifiers, that Mexicans are dirty,
tagging cholos, but quickly offer your family as counter-examples,
thus invalidating your overarching claim.

Go
ahead and tell people the truth about you — that eres
un
wimpy wab who’s so self-hating he must ask the Mexican for a
blessing. Here’s your bendición:
Vete
a la fregada, pinche puto pendejo baboso.

Q
Dear
Mexican:
I’m from a little Podunk area that relies heavily on
labor-intensive agriculture (mostly raising tobacco) and has a lot of
Mexican immigrants. I’ve noticed that most of the Mexicans I’ve
worked with or met share the same interests as most of the rednecks I
grew up with. Not to lay stereotypes on either group, but I’m
gonna: Both want big Dodge trucks with something on the back window
(rednecks usually go for Confederate flags, Mexicans usually go for
the Virgen de Guadalupe); both often wear boots made out of some
exotic animal skin; both seem to listen to country music, drink a lot
of cheap beer and hit on chubby redneck girls. Are the new immigrants
just adapting to the dominant redneck culture, or do rural folks
north and south of the border just share a lot of the same interests?
—Hillbilly
In Central Kentucky

A
Dear
Hermano:
The South will rise again — thanks to the help of Mexicans. U.S.
Census figures show that Dixie experienced the largest increase of
Latinos, percentage-wise, of any region in the United States, with
Mexicans constituting the vasto
majority of the population. While a lot of gabachos
have fretted about the influx, you’re right to embrace the
immigrants, Hillbilly. Mexicans and rednecks are removed only by
birth. The differences are negligible — Jack and Jim for ustedes,
Cazadores and Herradura for nosotros.
Ramón Ayala is our Bill Monroe; “Rocky Top” is y’all’s
“Canción Mixteca.” We cheer sports everyone else jeers
(NASCAR, soccer), use plural second-person pronouns, and we both hate
invading Yankees. The only matter we part on is the idea of secession
from the United States: While Southerners tried but failed, we’re
perfectly content with allowing our birth rates to advance across
America like Stonewall Jackson did through the Shenandoah Valley.

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