¡Ask A Mexican!
By Gustavo Arellano
Special “Mexicans are Racist” Edición
Dear Mexican: Having been called a “gabacho” by “Mexicans” much lighter than I and “wetback” by those whose parents (or who themselves) crossed several rivers as they west migrated to California, I’m curious as to which group you believe I should hold in the greatest disdain. While Anglo wetbacks are much more fun to ridicule (“How can I be a wetback? I’m from Ohio!”), calling those who share my mother’s ancestry unpleasant names often leads to angry confrontations (thank God I have my mick father’s height and size). I look forward to hearing from you and will ponder your possible reply while I enjoy the repast of corned beef, cabbage and refried beans I’ve prepared for tonight’s dinner (BTW—it’s properly served with flour rather than corn tortillas).
—Villa Go Bragh!
Dear Leprecano: The Mexicans, for sure. Gabachos are naturally going to be Know Nothings, but Mexicans should know better, especially when it comes to our mick brothers. To quote myself from my book: “The Irish were the Mexicans of the United States before the Mexicans. Millions of them migrated to this country destitute, as indentured servants (the precursor to the bracero program) and even as illegal immigrants. They were fleeing a homeland under siege by evil Protestants only to find similar treatment in the States. Gabachos here maligned the Irish for their Catholicism, their funny English, their big families and constant state of inebriation—stereotypes popularized by the mainstream press. The Irish fought back: they formed gangs and voting blocs and—in the case of the Saint Patrick’s Battalion—an entire battalion of hundreds of soldiers defected to the Mexican side during the 1846 Mexican-American War.
“But the Irish in America, to paraphrase Noel Ignatiev’s famous 1995 book, eventually became white, while Mexicans will forever remain Mexicans in the eyes of gabachos. Nevertheless, the spic-mick connection continues. I know many children of Irish-Mexican heritage who call themselves “leprecanos” a miscegenation of the words “leprechaun” and “Chicano.” Many Irish-American civic organizations support amnesty for illegals since about 50,000 Irish immigrants have no papers. Mexico and Ireland have harsh laws against illegal immigration and must constantly deal with their idiot cousins across the border, Guatemala and Northern Ireland. And gabachos have warped our precious St. Patrick’s Day and Cinco de Mayo holidays into bacchanals of booze and women—on second thought, that’s a compliment.”
The only other thing I’ll say right now, Villa go Bragh is that everyone knows corned beef tacos ALWAYS go better with corn tortillas.
Why do your people hate me? I’m half-Mexican, and I while I don’t have the stereotypical Mexican brown skin tone, I’m no different than everyone on Univision! I’d like to know why tienda owners steer me toward the Pepsi when all I want is Sidral, why even people I’ve explicitly told I am half-Mexican react with surprise when I mainline Pelon Pelo Rico, and why the only Mexicans who show me any love at all are the construction workers whistling at me on the street! And they’re probably Guatemalan! These feelings of alienation came to a head last week when a “Mexican” co-worker whose family has lived in fucking Texas for three hundred years didn’t invite me to a luncheon for Mexicans and other Latinas. What the fuck, Mexican? AND, I’m hot, I’m smart and I don’t smell.
—La Media Mexicana
Dear Half-Wab: We don’t hate you’re because you’re half-Mexican; we hate you because you’re a stuck-up pendeja fresa.
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