By Gustavo Arellano

Posted July 3, 2013 in News
askamexicanlogoDear Readers: My columna a couple of weeks ago about whether Aztec savagery influences violence in Mexico today drew muchos responses, both bueno and malo. Here are two:

Dear Mexican: I enjoy reading all your replies and was thinking about the last reply you wrote about the violence/Aztec blood question posed to you. I grew up in Huntington Beach and am a “brown man” (Iranian decent). I’m currently in Shitzona finishing up pharmacy school and made an interesting (to me) observation today at a gas station. The reason Mexicans are the way they are “sketchy” or “violent” or whatever the stereotype is due to the level of treatment they receive from their respective environment. I’ve played lots o’ fútbol back home and worked lots of jobs where I worked side-by-side with Mexicans. What I have found is that while back home, the Mexicans still had some of Napoleanesque machismo complex complete with super pervy sexual (toma, güey, etc.) behavior. Here in this hellhole joke of a state, the Mexicans are about double the classic stereotypes that I encountered back home.

It got me thinking, and what I’ve found is that the pinche güeros here are about seven to ten times more ignorant, and this naturally lends itself to overt racism. While I grew up in bro-y, stars-and-stripes, surf Nazi punk HB, AZ seems to have beat conservative Orange County over in terms of its discrimination (as everyone knows). This donkey’s ass level of ignorance results in a level of treatment from the white ruling class that is extremely cold, condescending, rude, arrogant and downright oppressive to the minority class which in this case is overwhelmingly Mexican. This level of intolerance of la raza I feel is what develops the combative nature of the Mexican. While this is a very simple observation, I wanted to get your thoughts on it, as I have always been very bewildered by some of the actions of the Mexicans I have interacted with throughout life.

Dear: Persie: You’re referring to internalized oppression, the sociological observation that minority groups end up believing and acting out the very stereotypes that the dominant culture imposes on them. Such pathologies usually manifest themselves in long-established minority cultures, though; in the case of recent Mexican immigrants, blame any fulfilled stereotypes on the fact that most foreign men overcompensate their machismo to mask their pain of living among Know Nothings—and if you don’t believe me, look at Marco Rubio.

You missed an opportunity to correct a misunderstanding in your reply to Puzzled by Narco Violence when he describes the Aztec as “notorious butchers and cannibals.” Yes, human sacrifice was practiced by Mesoamerican cultures like the Mexica, but in the context of religious ceremonies they believed to be necessary to appease their gods so that the universe would not come to an end. It was part of their belief system and was performed by priests in a very strict ritual. and although it was done on a vast public scale, the goal was to recall the spiritual justification for the empire by its subjects. In that respect, they were not much different from their European counterparts, where public executions drew huge crowds and where the goal was to reassert the sovereign’s divine power after it had been injured by a criminal act. The important thing is that neither society should be judged by its brutality and that in their appetite for death as spectacle they were not fundamentally different. (On the subject of cannibalism, I would remind the writer that recent evidence has proved that it was practiced in Jamestown, Virginia by the pilgrims).

—Naco de Neza

Dear Wab: In other words, the Aztecs were notorious butchers and cannibals. Gracias for clearing that up!

Ask the Mexican at themexican@askamexican.net, be his fan on Facebook, follow him on Twitter @gustavoarellano or ask him a video question at youtube.com/askamexicano!


One Comment


    Hello Mr. Arellano,

    I think there are good and bad people in all cultures. I have met some very beautiful and kind Latinos, whites, Asians,etc. I think certain behaviors are learned and some people are in fact evil. I am black and I have met evil, ruthless, blacks, Latinos, whites, Asians, etc. I think we need to be learn to respect, tolerate, educate, and be kind and understanding of all people. God put us ALL on this earth for a reason and it was NOT to kill, rape, rob, hate, and oppress each other, he put us on this earth to LOVE one another. I just know that love can break the spirit of violence and hatred. We are all one people. We need to fight against the evil powers that try to divide us based on race, class, sexual orientation, religion, etc. As a black person, I finally figured out something. If we minorities were “truly inferior”, then why are people trying so hard to tell us that we are inferior? It is like they are trying to ‘convince’ that we are inferior. Since they have ‘convince us’ then it must not be true. It is like an abusive husband telling his wife that no man will ever love her, then why does he love her? He has to reinforce this idea in her head because he is afraid that she will realize her own self-worth. We are all as worthy as we think we are. We do not need validation from the so called dominant culture. I have no room in my heart to hate someone, for their race, that is something we have no control over. I watch Latinos work hard to make it and I have nothing but RESPECT for their struggle. I watch them struggle to provide for their families and it brings tears of pride and awe because I too am a part of that struggle. Struggle can build character and make you appreciate what really matters in life.
    May God Bless You!

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