Aztlán

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Reading the latest stats from the U.S. Census Bureau which I was prompted to do by the feedline @TheAtlantic churns out on its twitter feed I realize that Chicanos don’t exist in that database by any definition. Then again I only did a superficial search, eitherways, it kinda bothers me a twad not to see us mentioned there at all …

where's you at ese?

where’s you at ese?

**need I say to enlarge please click the pic?

In A Scotch Paisano in Old Los Angeles1 a seldom researched area is taken to task, namely, that of assimilation of Anglos in what is a predominantly Spanish-Mexican dominated territory era. Anglos converted to Catholicism and abade by Hispanic customs. So is the case also in Jovita’s book2. There is a lot of intermarriage with Anglos or Americans. Despite the rhetoric of the text that pits Anglos and Mexicans there is acceptance of Anglos in the community. I suppose that a lot has to do with this idea within mexicans that one must improve the race, or as is known in Spanish, mejorar la raza. A little unknown and zealously kept and guarded dirty secret we bear upon us.

Yet one has to wonder if this tactic of intermarriage wasn’t orchestrated or is a little forgotten blip in our history. Who knows. Research certainly is needed to shed light here.

I somehow can’t accept coincidence in California and Texas.

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1 Dakin, Susanna Bryant, A Scotch Paisano in Old Los Angeles, Berkeley, 1978.

2 González, Jovita. Dew on the Thorn. Ed. José Limón. Houston: Arte Público Press, 1997.

Carmen Fought has done a remarkable job by giving us a structured form of ChE. I haven’t read Chicano English in Context through and through though but I have stopped in certain passages where my eyes have noticed the value in the observations or the examples. One such example that has drawn my attention is on page 104 within the title of the paragraph Part II: Semantic/lexical features of Chicano English and under the subtitle General lexical items. In example 6 we have American, meaning ‘European-American or white’. So up tp this day we still regard ourselves as not American.

I have argued throughout this blog how deeply important it is that we feel American. I have argued for an americanness of our own.

We have for far too long relegated America to the gringo, the blue-eyed even when we ourselves and our kin may have blue-eyes. It’s enough. We are Americans, regardless of nations and regardless of political divisions. It’s time to reclaim what’s ours. As Don Juan Preston in Jovita Gonzale’s Dew on the Thorn we must reclaim our heritage, our position in society.

We Xicanos need to put an end to the centennial bickering Mexicans and Americans have had since inception days. We the children can no longer take sides we are Mexican and we are American no matter what ye old blood feud says. Let Mexicans fear the Gringo; we Xicanos cannot do that. Let Gringos fear the Mexican; we Xicanos cannot do that.

We need to tire of taking sides to move forward, backwards for to remain ackward is no longer an option.

Forest Service warns Coloradans: Beware of camping Latinos
By John Tomasic 8/28/09 6:41 PM

In a presentation on recent discoveries of major marijuana-cultivation operations in Colorado, the U.S. Forest Service said it suspected an international cartel was behind the state’s hidden weed farms. Officials issued a warning that asked forest visitors to look for signs of drug trafficking. The telltale signs according to the officials? Tortilla, Spam and tuna packaging, Tecate beer cans, Latino music and people speaking Spanish.

Officials failed to acknowledge (1) that they were describing roughly a quarter of all campsites in the state and (2) that Spam, tortillas, tuna, Tecate, Latino music and people speaking Spanish are some of the best ingredients you can find when you’re looking to mix up a damn good camping experience.

Yet U.S. Forest Service officer Michael Skinner urged anyone encountering campers who fit the profile to “hike out quickly” and call police.

Polly Baca, co-chairwoman of the Colorado Latino Forum, told the Denver Channel that the Forest Service warning is racist and ill-conceived and threatening.

“It’s discriminatory and it puts Hispanic campers in danger.”

Marvink Correa, spokesman for the Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition, said that the next time he goes camping, he would “be sure to play nothing but Bruce Springsteen.”

So was the warning also issued in Spanish?

Source: http://coloradoindependent.com/36662/forest-service-warns-coloradans-beware-of-camping-latinos

By mistake I wrote Dew of the Thorn and once realizing my mistake I came upon a significance for the title of the book. I realized that dew is one of those things that is reminiscent of a new start. A new morrow if you will. Once I corrected my spelling error I proceeded to thank the gods of letters for my discovery, not. But yes, this is nice, this interpretation of mine. Dew on the Thorn allows us to see the new and allow us to realize the thorn in the eye before us. I always wondered why this string of words was a preferred choice for a title and I suppose I found my own interpretation for the book. So there.

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1 González, Jovita. Dew on the Thorn. Ed. José Limón. Houston: Arte Público Press, 1997.

I have fallen in love with page 150 of Dew on the Thorn by Jovita Gonzáles1. It’s a chapter entitled The New Leader and it’s about the second Fernando of the Olivares family, born 1871. He is a half gringo and a half Mexican.

Fernando grew up, and realizing when very young that he had American blood, felt very different from the rest of the boys. He had a feeling of resentment against his heritage that made him feel he was an outcast among his friends. Doña Ramona’s teachings […] made him feel that he could never have anything in common with his American grandfather. (p. 150)

Gotta love the reverse mestizaje in play. The reverse crossborder where it is the gringo in us that yearns to crossover.

Beautiful.

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1 González, Jovita. Dew on the Thorn. Ed. José Limón. Houston: Arte Público Press, 1997.

In Dew on the Thorn by Jovita Gonzáles1 the color of races play a significant role, gringos have blue eyes and servants are dark. Yet more interesting is the fact that the Caste system plays a role in the late 1800′s as is evident that society revolves around the color of the skin. Add to this the fact within the narrative that these Mexicans of the late 1800′s in Lower Texas had never seen a negro in their midst and you got yourself a decent cocktail to churn out all kinds of speculations.

But what bothers me the most in Jovita’s narrative is that her main Mexican characters are not considered to be Americans. This binomial bothers me. They Americans and We, Mexicans. I don’t know, I just can’t seem to place myself in that narrative.

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1 González, Jovita. Dew on the Thorn. Ed. José Limón. Houston: Arte Público Press, 1997.

In Dew on the Thorn by Jovita Gonzáles1, the Anglo plays a rather significant roll not because we are not familiar with the eternal binomial in Chicano narrative between gringos and Chicanos but because it is an early ground we have walked upon before. Jovita is a predecessor of Aztlán geography and topology. It is a common ingredient in Chicano narrative to see the gringo in the distant. Way before we begin to deal with the gringo we have began to see Them. Jovita does this well. It details the aproximation of the inevitable, that is, the gringo in our midst. Then we deal with it. We can see this same technique in Ana Castillo’s novel So Far from God: The Peacock raiser encroaches in the consciousness unannounced. We have only heard of them and then we see them to lastly seek them.

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1 González, Jovita. Dew on the Thorn. Ed. José Limón. Houston: Arte Público Press, 1997.

I have come to realize that Chicano narrative has fitted quite nicely into American folklore because it is a vision. Chicanos in general all share a vision of what it was and what it might become. That is why Aztlán although despised by most Anglo loving philes can accept the fact that we exist. Even though they use the most lethal and potent weapon against us, Ridicule, they recognize something familiar in Aztlán: it is a vision.

El Año en Spitzberg I

El Año en Spitzberg II

I carry in my head the voices I heard through the earphones. A free mp3 download that infiltrated my veins. I can associate. I can relate. I can feel the hispanic virus trying to seek its kin. I refuse to allow such communion. I don’t want that language’s high horse shit yet.

The theocracy of la raza are beyond the streets they study. Something happens to chicano academics that makes them distance themselves from the very culture they purport to examine. I don’t get that. In colloquial language they sell out. For some reason they have transgressed a border and become uneasy with the realities before them. Instead of living the culture they resort to the text version of it. Then they romanticize it and then they crossover to a fantasy realm. Going academic is like a passport to another country which lets you check in but doesn’t let you check out. Few hardcore Chicanos are able to make it back, remain part of the culture studied before one.

I don’t get this. Academia in itself is a cradle of middle class values that will not allow to be tainted by anything it does not approve beforehand. The aesthetics are set and we fit not the parameters of its watermark. The reflection rejects us. And academic Chicanos know this. As soon as we fall into the realm of accepted beings we fall into another category whereby we are scrutinized with a set of values we dare not touch with a ten foot pole. These values are so cherished by the Chicano academic community that anything that threatens it we scamper like silly ninnies back to its refugee. It’s only natural, god featuring children that we are. We would very much like to believe that we are a fused we/I. We would love to believe that a syncretism exudes from us yet alas! In the kingdom of the one eyed we are the purblind.

What’s worst is that once we are accepted we cease to be this militant, question all entity beyond reason, take no prisoners selves. We share not. We become docile denizens of a society we fought so much to be recognized as part of it and once well in place we stand in humble obedience as onlookers as our brethren fight to get across this thin line that separates us from them. Once we have crushed the citadel’s walls we shut the doors and fall behind these academia forts that hold our historic knowledge in databases that restrict the vox populi from sites such as MUSE, JSTOR and ECBHost.

I mean what the F?

I mean, échame una mano compa, no seas puto ese!

I wonder how aztec and maya loving chicanos will react to this.

Specially La Voz de Aztlán. My, my indeed. Moctezuma was gay. He loved to gorgle the mayonesa; le gustaba el arroz con popote. Well, you get the picture. I personally don’t subscribe to the aztec and maya semiotics of the Chicano propaganda machine anymore. I have said that numerous times before. So much I don’t care to enumerate anymore. So am going alphabet baby: A, B, C and D are but a few examples of my distancing. I strictly subscribe to desert semiotics in my xicanismo. I belong to the Southwest indigenous cultures. Apache, pai pai, kumai and navajo traditions first and foremost.

A Mexican consulate chief stationed in the Dominican Republic, who is in transit to Philadelphia and that goes by the christian name of José Luis Basulto Ortega has written a historical novel titled Cuiloni. He explains therein how “el Imperio de México fue un obsequio de Moctezuma a Hernán Cortés como parte del cortejo amoroso que tuvieron” that is “the mexican empire was a gift from Moctezuma to Hernán Cortés as love dowry for the love affair that they engaged in.”

This is heavy stuff. The whole notion of aztec semiology in Chicano narrative is for machismo purposes. Not to mention the notion in México where aztec culture is represented as undefeated and resilient willing to withstand the Spanish masculinity despite the years gone by.

If you can muster some Spanish I suggest these hush hush links:

El jefe de la sección consular de la embajada de México en República Dominicana (cónsul de carrera, en tránsito hacia Filadelfia),, ha escrito una novela histórica, Cuiloni: historia de una lágrima, en la que establece que “el Imperio de México fue un obsequio de Moctezuma a Hernán Cortés como parte del cortejo amoroso que tuvieron”. Basulto, quien fue subdirector del Instituto Matías Romero de Estudios Diplomáticos, asegura contar con “quince pruebas documentales que demuestran la relación homosexual de ambos” y hace que uno de los personajes de su novela, Gerónimo Aguilar, conversando con la Malinche, llegue a decir que “México se perdió por una loca”. El autor de esa obra ha sido diplomático durante 30 años y asegura que su provocativa interpretación histórica proviene de la lectura de mexicanistas casi olvidados y de varios códices antiguos “censurados”. Basulto envió algunas de sus reflexiones a esta columna porque, dice, con lo escrito aquí “se provoca un dolor reflexivo que pocos están dispuestos a asumir, y creo que este tema que propongo es parte de esa necesidad que tiene el actual poblador de México de reconocer y conocer la verdad ‘manque duela’” El libro, publicado por Editorial Felou, será presentado el próximo 24, a las 17 horas, en uno de los auditorios del INAH…

Diversas reacciones causó la referencia hecha ayer aquí de una novela histórica que plantea que “el Imperio de México fue un obsequio de Moctezuma a Hernán Cortés como parte del cortejo amoroso que tuvieron”. Por ejemplo, Guillermo Marín (www.toltecayotl.org.mx) lamenta que haya “mexicanos que son extranjeros incultos en su propia tierra”, al señalar que el conquistador hispano ultrajó no sólo a la Malinche sino también a Moctezuma. Pero, añade, “en Tenochtitlán existía el Tlatocan, el consejo supremo, con dos figuras gobernantes, el tlatoani (el que organiza) y el ciuhacoatl (el que administra), y los dos mandaban obedeciendo a ese consejo. De modo que Moctezuma no era un rey todopoderoso, como los europeos. Las decisiones que se tomaron fueron en consejo, como se siguen tomando en las comunidades indígenas”.

Bamba

Gracia.

Ordet Gracia.

The word Gracia has never adquiered, in the English language, the significance Ritchie Valens gave it. Gracia.

He knew. We knew. You know. I Knew- I know. And so it was.

Amén

Stolen at mouse point from Tijuana/Beirut:

We come from a long line of wanderers. We believe that ideas must travel. We carry information with us across highlands, over mountains. We collect along the way as we skim oceans and dip into valleys or hide in forests. We barter and trade. We never horde. We carry what we can, losing bits and pieces along the way. we can’t take it all with us. We always leave something behind. People look down upon us. Say we have no roots, we are dangerous, we disrupt. We fill people’s minds with stories: lies and falsehoods. Without us they would know nothing of the world outside. We are not confused about our job. We do it willingly. We fill our eyes, ears, hearts — we stuff ourselves — with sights, sounds, emotions. We take it all in and leak out what we cannot hold. The rest we scatter along the way. Spread the word. Beauty. Love. Desire. Tears. Breath. This is how we do things. We find grace here. We are not afraid to wander. We know the way.

Do you see yerself?

Update: For those of you that know Swedish Eva Zetterman has placed on the web a little bit on art and media related to chicanos: Att skapa ett vi – gatukonst i Kalifornien

She has also done it in English, so there is no need to panic: Signs of Identity Processes – Street Art in California Eva Zetterman. And get aload of the title of the pdf file: haina_6_zetterman.pdf

First published: December 31, 2006 @ 21:36

Finally. I found this paper I knew was cooking because I spoke several times to the researcher myself. I managed to ask her once, right smack in the middle of her research if it was possible to see her work but that proved be a no-no and ever since then I have been out of touch from the lovely gal. Either way here is an excerpt of her work and if it interests you one can download the frigging thang here.

Author: Jonsson, Carla
Title: Code-switching in Chicano Theater: Power, Identity and Style in Three Plays by Cherríe Moraga

Keywords: code-switching, Chicano theater, Chicano, Chicano discourse, power, identity, language ideology, third space, style, hybridity, code-mixing

The thesis examines local and global functions of code-switching and code-mixing in Chicano theater, i.e. in writing intended for performance. The data of this study consists of three published plays by Chicana playwright Cherríe Moraga.

Another proyect on the go is by an old professor of mine at Stockholm University, she herself is mexican and has lived many years in Aztlán.

‘Food and Identity in Late Twentieth-Century Chicano Literature’

Even though the importance of food in the individual and collective identity of a group of people already has been studied in detail by the social sciences, literary criticism has paid little attention to the presence of food and drink in literature in general, and, much less, in Mexican and Chicano literature. Still, the presence of these everyday elements in literature in not arbitrary, it is an important part of the literary work; by the use of factors related to food (such as the preparation of dishes, the ingredients used, and the very act of eating), the texts attempt to help the reader understand the association with the Chicano identity discourse.

Mexican identity shows itself in various ways in a great deal of Chicano literature. The Aztlan myth is a fundamental element that both Mexicans and Chicanos have in common. Both groups can be considered as one, since the search for the Aztlan of the Aztecs has been and still is an important factor for all descendants of Mexicans. Aztlan, a mythological place that occupies an important part of the collective consciousness of all Mexicans (including Chicanos) cannot be placed geographically. Thus, what is ‘Mexican’ cannot be defined as something that only exists south of the border, but something that all descendants of Mexicans have.

Sounds rather interesting to me and I can wait to get my hands on this one. I never really gave much thought to food issues in Aztlán so this paper ought to wake ones appetite quite exquisitely.

Lastly, I want to mention a few other goodies. Firstly, Chicano culture is making headlines overhere and in proper Aztlán too!

Gregory Rodriguez: Swedish Mexican Food, Straight From the U.S. Sweden indulges in American culture by going on a taco binge.

You see, here — as in other parts of Europe — Mexican food was not brought over by Mexicans at all. Rather, it was introduced by American TV shows and movies. That explains why there’s a “Gringo Special” on the menu at the Taco Bar, a Swedish fast-food chain, and why nearly all the Mexican products in the grocery stores — “Taco Sauce,” “Taco Spice Mix” and “Guacamole Dip” — are labeled in English.

Beleive it or not a swedish blog got mentioned in the article so it made the rounds quite nicely.

Lastly, this blog is linked in a wiki paper! No kidding joe

Absolut Vodka pays homage to Aztlán, although not without ruffling some white feathers, off course. And then they say tin hat folk are nuts.

Absolut Aztlan

This morning I am drawn to a particular memory that I cherish very much. It is its poignancy that made it last in my neurons. The event in question took place last year, 2007, during the month of July. I was off in Tijuana on a vacation that I had long awaited to take. During that period of my life I was very much on the lookout for beers, a particular interest of mine which I enjoy very much and whenever there is a chance to try out something new I eagerly seek it out. During a little stint in San Diego I went with my aunt and uncle of Chula Vista to an old part of San Diego called Old Town. This particular haunt eeks out a living by caving in to tourists who wish to remember the Old San Diego when it used to be Mexican although most of the trinkets sold there have as much to do with Old México as waterpipes have to do with Eskimos. Now, one would think that its o.k to draw attention to the fact that México lost territories to the US during the 1848 war which it is off course true but the fact that one cannot bring about the fact to gringos that Old Town was once Mexican is not so palpable. It just makes it all too real for gringos for the mere fact that those usually asking tend to be Mexican themselves.

This little nitch of business housed on historical property is even more bizarre to the eye because the warping of authenticity bellies a glowing shine of falsehood all over its facade. Need I also mention that for a historical site this joint is also a distortion of several pieces of history but by the time one comes to that conclusion one is engulfed by the silly old bliss that permeates the atmosphere and just permits us to let go and let be. Eitherway, the kin and I decided to check out a restaurant that sold Mexican food. Now, you must take into account that San Diego is very close to México, so close that if had we but decided to go back to México and eat Mexican food in México it would have taken us less than 10 minutes to do so. So México is like a spit away so to say. This also ties in with my little description of Old Town because being so close to México San Diego’s Old Town is a poor copy of its old self bearing in mind that one could be better at refurnishing Old Town with its former glory had one but only wished so. So there we are, in that restaurant and me being eager to try out something new by way of beers I decided to ask for the imported variety. I swear to god that when I heard the list of imported beers my insides just went into shock mode. I do not know if this state of being betrayed my exterior but I remember I remained silent, in shock at hearing the list, but silent.

The list of imported beers all bore names of the town next door, that is Tijuana, México. Now technically it is imported beer but for the love of christ how much can one deceive itself. And it is this sort of daily deceit gringos play on one another or at the very least make the local native swallow to separate them from the rest of the frey called México.

I don’t think many mexicans care much about the aid but rather care about were that aid will end up. Many mexicans in my generation have known for years about the crookedness in the upper echelons of our society so it is not surprising that we tend to resist any help from the US. This resistance tends to be misread by the media at large which still holds a sway on a narrative that belongs more to the better half of the latter 1800′s than the 2000′s.

We know, for example, that the leaders of our political elite will rather distribute the goods amongst themselves rather than see the needs of the nation. Those elites are like hungry beasts that require feeding to be appeased. The US happily provides the chow for them. In return, the US is content with exploiting a situation that benefits them although shortsightedly, ignore, at their own peril, the dangers it treads upon as if those dangers were more of a nuisance rather than a prevention plan in action. So the US pays a hefty sum of money for a return that consequently only creates more problems rather than offering a solution for the best buck.

Hence, pouring down money into mexico’s elite will only help the US gain incentives and create more resistance to US ideas in Mexico. While in the short run this would seem the ideal thing to do, history will repeat itself. Friedman’s Shock and Awe economics are coming to a halt and sooner or later the democratic system we all favor will have its day in Mexico. At this point in time, I suggest that the US await for more friendlier attitudes from the population in México for its help. As it is now, the US is going over the heads of the mexican population. Remember, Calderón is considered an illegitimate government, whether Americans like it or not and those are the rules of a democracy.

Hold tight to those purse strings Washington, the day when we really need you is yet to come. After all, it isn’t as if we don’t care for those territories we lost back in 1848.

Just when I thought that I was out they pull me back in” Michael Corleone in The Godfather III.

According to Carlota Cardenas quoted by Alicia Gaspar de Alba in the book that reviews the CARA Exhibition named “Chicano Art” she says, that . [sic] to apply (the word chicana) [sic] to oneself is a political act.

Chicana Feliz a.k.a Zulma Aguiar.

I refuse, or resist in this case, to render my identity to to a political act. Being Xicano is beyond a political statement. Perhaps it is so for my brethen under that Damocles’s sword called USA. I, on the other hand, long ago moved to another post. Heck, said sword proved beyond me. I am beyond the Star and Spangle. If anything, I am beyond any political ideology. Long I discovered that I need not stress to be that which my land gave as a birth right. I am, to certain extents, beyond Xicano rethoric. I am beyond the recruiting offices of Aztlán and their zealous drive to impose the ideology of this or that. I am simply a desert Xicano which claims the Southwest as its birthplace, nothing more.

I am the first to stand on my own two feet. I shame not for my accent when I utter my tongue. I shame not for my past or ancestors. I shame not for that which I am.

I will not let ignorance dictate the course my forefathers, my foremothers, treaded upon. Words will not destroy me nor will they lay out the course of my destiny. I am beyond that and more.

This fight sort of reminds one of the one the Swedish-Finish folk stride for in Finland.

Swedish-finish

The Swedish text reads as follows:

The Finish can never take care of the Swedish language and the Swedish culture. Only we, the Swedish-Finish, can do that.

Backside of the Sagrario Metropolitano in Mexico City, DF.

This parish church, quite independent of the Cathedral, adjoins it on the east. Built to the design of Lorenzo Rodriguez and consecrated in 1768, the Sagrario Metropolitano is one of the finest examples of Mexican Churrigueresque.

fountain

Detail of Mexica

Friar

We have a very nice snippet of a side of Aztlán we seldom get to hear. Yes, there are countless of stories about how we came to be in Aztlán but very seldom is there any picture or specific location that pin points the odyssey. A fellow conciudadano of mine, Omar Pimienta, he of the Bookleggger collection has done it again, here he presents us with a new version of how things really are.

The old classic one from the Booklegger Manifesto:

The bookleggers manifesto:
Border scholars Javier Durán and Juan Carlos Ramírez-Pimienta have theorized the notion of “educated” Mexicans residing in the United States, Mexicans who have emigrated to the United States as well as to U.S education during their formative years and who are referred to as “Wet Minds”. The natives of the Mexican northern border states, many of whom have been pushed abroad by centralist education, cross the border on a daily basis. Since this phenomenon of the “Commuter minds” first occurred, the US immigration officers have been on the lookout for books as incriminating evidence for the crime of getting educated.

Many imprudent prospective “Commuter Minds” get caught and their rights to cross the border are taken away.

Our job is, as Capone once stated, to supply a demand.

We are the bookleggers.

Octavio Castellanos
Omar Pimienta
Clavo: Juan Laguana

Been sort of following the fuss that a candid outburst by Jessica Alba has created.

I first read it here and then occasionally peek here for any further reactions to it. I don’t think Jessica Alba realizes how much rooted racism is there in her candid declaration that she ain’t no’mo Mexican. I don’t think that she even realizes the extent of ethnic depletion she’s been through. She fails to understand that a choice by her father, to repress anything Mexican because they are ‘Americans’ burst out into a third generation still untreated. She must of still suffered along the way ’cause of the color of her skin. She inevitably fails to understand that just because a snake sheds its skin it doesn’t necessarily cease to be a snake.

As if Mexicans weren’t Americans. As if American meant WASP English speaking only. She ought to listen to my concuidadano J. Carlos Frey instead. He says that on immigration we have been told about it the wrong way, in essence, he argues that we are not immigrants. Heck, I’ll buy that any old day.

Sorry Jessica, not even  Pilatus got away with trying to wash himself from the problem and I see that not even becoming invisible nor the shield shields you away from esa sangre nuestra.

And ps, it isn’t mexicans the ones churnig out loads of kids,  heck, I say we are lacking in the dept. The US has a population over three times the size of México and in the US it is the white people that are the majority, not mexicans. White people tend to be nuclear and hence seem like they are less, we mexicans just tend to prefer family bonds and ties so we tend to look big but in fact are fewer than gringo nuclear peeps.

With the English Only debate raging across the states of the US and a personal conclusion along the linguistic lines of learning a new language there is much to be said regards the topic at hand.

English Only is one of those distracting issues which political Republicans in the dual political establishment of Washington tend to chew at every now and then to draw attention away from the electorate. Nothing like a thorny and contentious issue to give beleaguered leaders a fresh breath of air. I personally don’t understand how in the world a language can save identity or strengthen it when language, and I speak from experience, is nothing more than a communications tool best manipulated by people who know languages and not by so-called nativists and monolinguals who are too lazy to even bother to research their language beyond the charms of the dialectal aspects that make up a given population. And I suppose that English Only proponents might find the English language the most natural language for the US but alas! by applying said thinking they are exacting a price on the Americas still fresh out from colonial rule. Forget the most natural languages of America, those spoken by natives of the land.

The most curious thing of the English Only gang is that they want to do their bidding in a democratic fashion by squashing all forms of attempt to communicate with the government in none other language than English hence creating a so unamerican institution such as a hierarchy between those who know and those who don’t know and their meddlesome middlemen otherwise known as translators. Which is ironic in some fashion because that would mean that the democratic principle of one man one vote would in effect exclude said votes inasmuch as voting in America is a federal institution who, if there will be such a mandate to implement, create a transloacracy peddling interpretations at the best price. I can now see the interests group market drooling that a new cadre of power peddlers are creating their own niche and the commissions they will exact to them for stomping on their grounds. This may sound dirty but it seems that those proposing their own agenda to fulfill their need of belonging at the expense of others are willing to throw the baby along with the water.

Then again these days it is not so much about democratic ideas but of extreme principles and dire consequences isn’t it? We must heed the cry of the leaders that decry the sky is falling. It has happened before and it will happen again, so there. Embolden the bilinguals of America to take a stand, they ought and we ought to raise our voice once and for all to this silly notion that America the Great only speaks English, caca de toro sayeth I.

*

Well, I finally realized the futility of it all. Learning a third language has cost me my dignity, my self esteem and countless hours of intense and embarrassing pain that still manages to kick in a pang or two as we speak. The excruciating pain I tell you. O-uch10.

To put it simply it has not been worth it. I suppose that I could of chosen a more lenient language variant other than the Swedish one but I ended up with this one due to family and unlike friends well one can’t choose that either. Please, allow me to expound.

What has made me to come to such a drastic decision, and some have said superfluous and ludicrous at some point during the past 2 weeks where I have ventilated said dangerous and precarious period in my life, well ten years of trying to master the Swedish language, that’s what, I have retorted randomly in minor tones as well as exaggerated ones and at times, I do confess, with a tad of irritation in my voice which has thrown some of my acquaintances off guard, no doubt partly due to some intoxicating spirits. And some impatience of mine to thwart off the masses appeal of learning a third language so positive in society. There has not been any positives in acquiring a new language as of far. At least not in the everyday if you will.

Learning Swedish has been a gateway to many treasures, yes, one cannot deny the fact of that yet on the other hand it has also been a constant source of irritation on one account. I am not sufficiently proficient at it to make my point come across. There, I said it, am not a good Swedish speaker. So learning a third language does bring its limitations along with it and that is that one must be ready to surrender the I of one’s constitution and let it be thrown to the hungry and savage beasts of ignorance to be had for brunch and leftovers. Either that or I am a jinxed motherfuck who has been lotted nothing but unkind and unfriendly sentients on this earth of ours all whilst I try to communicate with the so-called earthlings on this far fetched patch of mostly frozen dirt. Yes, I am reduced to nil every time my mouth opens to communicate in Swedish. This has been hard to endure because I have sacrificed personal development at the expense of trying to be understood, and I pray feverishly most of the times for it, halfways.

Swedish people will not meet you halfway when learning a new language. They will neither try to correct you nor they will try to finish your thoughts thereby creating a bridge for a common understanding. The pro’s an con’s of this attitude I have not weighted with earnest and I only mention it here because I have a grudge at it. I am most certain there is a positive in their attitude towards Swedish language learners yet I fail to grasp the purpose in it. This attitude as only left me rueful at best.

But the important thing here about my firm, unwavering adherence to the judgment upon my third language learning is that it limits me as a person in the everyday. Speaking Swedish means a certain death for me as a person because I cannot fully express myself. I can at most present a half cooked notion of my full potential and pray it is welcomed with open arms yet that seldom happens.

Stuff

Ready made blogs seem to make it easier for a lot of bloggers. Gone are the days when the blog masses seemed to spend as much on the blog as they spent writing on their blog. I suppose there was a collective short circuit and many just couldn’t deal with the symbiosis of both being a sort of techi and a writer. I should know what am talking about. I still deal with strange blog phenomena.

*

Scheweden is receiving nice like sirocco winds of a sort. Ja! For this corner of the world anything above the freezing level is a hot summer day. So everything is falling in place like any other season, that is if we are not suddenly attacked by martians for being such the sneaky voyeurs always spying on them or a terrible dislocation of the earth’s poles sending day and night to different dimensions of sorts. Flowers bloomed, are blooming, the neighbor smiles more often and I fight the lawn and a pile of guilt about time pressure to finish a 7000 hour ago project today rattles menacingly by the second. Either way, I expect that the normal june rains will make their entrance any day now.

*

Have kept most to myself these days.

Ask a Mexican in Svd

Click on image to enlarge.

I could scarcely believe my lying eyes when I landed on the article. ¡Ask a Mexican! By Gustavo Arellano in the Swedish press. I have known of this column since the blogsphere presented it to me some two odd years ago. I had reservations at first but somehow I still keep on reading it as many chances I get to read it. It’s funny, what can I say.

Mexicans in the Swedish press tend to be quite either the exotic beings with a rich cultural past or the more gringo traditional take on the mexican, a burden like a pest.

When Swedes speak of mexicans in the US its more like two birds of a feather flocking togehter, the Swedes, the US. Like Swedes saying we understand your dilemma. From a law perspective off course. The focus lies on the illegality of things.

One seldom sees an article explaining the phenomena or the causes of immigration in the nordic press but rather one hears through the Swedish language the ailing and wailing of the American conservative outcry (a phenomena that started out in the middle of the 80′s) that mexicans are running over the USA. Perhaps that is to change?

The present article brings the aforementioned forth adding that to its merit that is precisely what Ask a Mexican! does: pin point the absurd in gringo mentality by declaring some aspects of an equation in immigration as illegal [mexicans crossing illegal into the US] but never what other aspects contribute to the equation, in this case, that employers that hire illegal immigrants don’t get the notion of illegal either since it is illegal to hire illegal immigrants.

Source: Image in blog comes from a photo taken on Monday the 30th of April and the article thereby presented appears in the printed Sunday edition of the Swedish newspaper Svd on page 21 in the International section.

Ok

thou sayeth I ain’th a Xicano

in every stop in your language

thou ain’t

sayeth thou

What is then one to do

with the language wiring

which spreadeth itself like a posin ivy

down

my spiral spine.

Thou aren’th born in Califas but in Tijuas.

’tis true sayeth I.

That Tijuas saw to it fit to mother the I’eth

which constitueth

the I in me.

I then am an illegal alien in a spiritual body

which can not see beyond

its carnal knowledge.

pelt

None feeleth the goose bumps

as

they arise

e my

brown skin

as I

hear

the tunes

cheer

for America the blessed one

whilst

mi

head

gets stoned

for questioneing

the status quo

I have always had trouble believing am a Xicano. No matter that the evidence points to the fact that I am just that.

This has become even more apparent for me here in Europe. the Nordic corner, isolated from Aztlán. Being away from the motherland has proven a sky that raineth a manna of ideas. I started out by declaring myself a prop. 187 exile. The first Xicano in exile driven away by Pete Wilson and his conservative tirade of this and that of the likes of me. Then I wrote. I wrote and I discovered the real Xicano in me through the written word. I did this both in Spanish and English.

This has proven quite productive because xicanismo is closely tied to language. I am fortunate to love language so in the process of peeling the core that I had in proper Aztlán, using language as a peeler, I discovered layers of myself that I figure I would not have otherwise managed to put in evidence to the naked eye of the I.
Through my language [read: English, Spanish, Spanglish, Espanglish, the southwest dialect] I learned who I really am. I found my roots. Being away from the American psycho identity dominatrix that usually sadomasochistic fellows like me tend to bed with gave airs of freedom unbeknownst. It was a breath of fresh air away from the stars and stripes which hangeth upon the xicano ens like a Democles sword.

We xicanos tend to prefer the gringo in us because it is just the gringo in us which makes us. And because some of us only understand that side, and use our mexican heritage like a mourning gown we never take of, we react defensively to anything that threatens this ‘identity’. Though this theory is hardly embraced because it means that Aztlán lieth not in one nation but precisely in the being of two de facto lands. So don’t expect people to nick away in approval at the latter exposed idea.

Little is known about the degree of gringoness in each and one of us. We discuss this not because doing so would mean too much differentiation rendering atoms a mere metaphorical image. So while we spouse in all glory all México we seldom do so our American side. Yuck say some. Too pocho, too gabacho. Yet it is this very aspect that we tend to let radiate most in us.

We don mexican heritage like a perennial día de los muertos affair, in all earnest, we live a past and live the gringo present. Although some xicanos drape themselves in their mexicanness like a fashion gown, alas! their appearance or self image, shallow like a dead river bed. This gringo alienates us from one another because as gringo nature is we feel different. The kind of different that says am better than you. An am and you world which builds canyons the like of the Grand one. It is a fact which cannot be denied. Tis easy to lay claim to Aztec culture and ignore the rest. Tis easy to lay ink to flesh temples of the Maya when Geronimo, so close yet so far away from Quetzalcoátl, remains in the sands of the Sonora Desert surrounded by the silence of time.

I, for example, have been excluded from my so-called brethren from both sides. My brethren xicano infected by Manifest Destiny from Los, desperately trying to integrate to US society after more than 150 years of ‘integration’ and by my xicano brethren infected by over 70 years of mexican nationalism who are yet to realize how xicanos they are because one tends to cease to be mexican once one ceases to be present in México or adopts strange customs. Never mind those customs have nothing to do with, say, Tijuana.

I feel the difference like a slight scent of garlic because am not fully Mexican and because am not fully American, that is, I lack the papers on the one side and I lack presence on the other. That is my most natural state. A state that perhaps ensued in me a quest for learning to command the whip which castigated me the most, language. So I learned to command what the land gave me as a birthright. And this difference became even more apparent. I went below the shallow.

I was born in Tijuana, raised in Southwestern traditions from the San Francisco Bay Area to San Diego County. Of recent I have reached a sort of compromise with myself. I say am a xicano tijuanense. Un xicano de este lado. That is, a Xicano which is not born in the US.
By adhering to this formula I allowed myself to become closer to my own surroundings. That is, I saw that which nurtured me whilst I breathed Geronimo’s sand through nostrils filled with muck from other lands. Santa Ana winds cleared the way and I now spouse the indigenous in me and do not let myself be fooled by common Chicano semiotics.

Off course it still irritates me to be xicano in the vicinity of my gringo cousins because though I speak english I am not a US citizen. Here in Sweden they a saying about Germans: there is a little Hitler in every German. I can say this about my gringo Xicano cousins: there is a little migra in every US born Xicano.

Híjole, we must be the only race in the world that is consumed by itself.

By Frank Jack Daniel

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – A moth with a big appetite that once chomped its way through huge swaths of cacti in Australia has landed in Mexico, where the spiky plant is a favorite food stuff and major agricultural product.

Officials said on Friday a moth trapped close to the beach resort of Cancun this week could be the same species that destroyed some 50 million acres of cacti in Australia, opening the possibility the moth will spread to Mexico’s cactus farming regions.

The Cactoblastis cactorum moth landed on Mexico’s Caribbean island Isla Mujeres last year, sparking a major government pest control operation.

Pest control agents have set up hundreds of traps along the coastline and are searching hotels and private homes for further signs of the moth.

“This is war,” said Enrique Sanchez, head of plant and animal health in Mexico. “If lots of them arrive we will try to destroy the largest number possible with pesticides.”

The edible cactus, or nopal, industry in Mexico is worth about $150 million each year. About 10,000 farmers cultivate the plant.

“Before the Chicano and the undocumented worker and the Mexican from the other side can come together, before the Chicano can have unity with Native Americans and other groups, we need to know the history of their struggle and they need to know ours.  Our mothers, our sisters, and brothers, the guys who hang out on street corners, the children in the playgrounds, each of us must know our Indian lineage, our history of resistance.”  – Gloria Anzaldua

Well, it seems that the gorge of buddy making in the so called blogostitlán is done and over with. Many of the bloggers that started out as a chain like minded club barely write anymore or stand out as islands these days with no direction in sight.

I did the rounds on the links I have and many wail that they don’t write anymore and there interests for things Aztlán is long gone. Long gone are also the questions that forced a label upon them and long gone are also the memories that usually permeated the posts of said bloggers.

Many failed to realize that Chicanos are too different from one another to really form any group and many failed to realize that their superordinate label ‘American’ supercedes any notion of Chicanismo in their lives. What I mean by this is that the fear of being labeled alien is stronger than the fashionable chicano, we all love the stars and stripes but even more, we fear the questioning of our americanism.

Many also fell into the trap of racism accusing chicano culture of being essentially racist. Terms such as raza, güero, gringo and other terms raza uses to discuss the Other became a point of contention amongst some bloggers that just wanted to question us rather than explore the origins of said terms or why we used them at all. Many backed off quickly and began recoiling at the idea that their chicanismo was a sort of racism in disguise. They quickly forgot that chicanos embrace all forms of races in its ens.
Others just simply wanted out because blogging requires incredible amounts of energies to pursue its goal, to write on a frequent basis.

Then there is a point of contention being boiled as we speak, what is the Xicano blogsphere? I, for example, prefer a more militant form of xicano blogging that stands in direct verbal confrontation with the Other. I prefer cholo xicano and older more akin to the culture of xicanismo I grew up with.

Then there is a more pocho culture that embraces both cultures more openly which tends to cause friction with the latter above mentioned. Then there are the new arrivals to Aztlán which lack any form of direct contact with Aztlán which tends to cause friction with the latter two mentioned.

Be that as it may while the Xicano blogsphere seems to have dwindled somewhat in some corners though in other corners it blossoms. There are many sites and blogs that bespeak of xicanismo in all sorts of form. It is spreading out and the singularity factor that dominated the birth of the Xicano blogsphere. Even the kind of xicanismo that I spouse seems to be coming out.

Though I have nothing against the xicanismo which embraces Aztec and Maya semiotics, at the present time I give more time to my own kind of Xicanismo, desert related xicanismo which has been but forgotten.

I recently put this WTF blurb over at technorati.

Tijuana has for the past several years been a constant source of talk. If it’s not politics, police, music or arts Tijuana is doing what it tends to do best, get wasted.

Tijuana is a city which lies on the furthest northern area of México. It borders the USA and i’s neighbor is San Diego. It faces the Pacific Ocean. There is an incredible amount of business going on around Tijuana both legal and illegal but its usually the illegal sort of business that tends to attract the limelight. Specially the drug related kind which is so powerful that it tends to corrupt every form of institution on both sides of the countries, the US of A and México.

Native population of Tijuana is rather small. We are referred to as tijuanenses and tijuanenses tend to be bilingual, that is, we speak English and Spanish though this might be lopsided as there is an incredible amount of Mixtecos, people from Oaxaca, México, native to Tijuana too and whose own language is preserved so tijuanenses can be and are probably trilingual as well.

It has a population of about 2 million with a floating population of 500, 000 give or take.At the present time Tijuana is governed by a notorious person whose reputation is questionable, Jorge Hank. This man of politics belongs to one of México’s richest families and has several dark rumors always following him. It is rumored that he has mafia ties and that he is the intellectual mastermind behind the assassination of a journalist from Tijuana. May people dislike him and one can imagine he is getting a bad rap. He will soon leave office to run for governor of Baja California.

Tijuana recently became a bit of world wide news because the federal government in México ordered the military to take the town by storm, and that they did. They came and attacked the police! That’s right, when the federal government sent the men in green they didn’t go after the bad guys they went for the local police. They disarmed them, had them fingerprinted and left the city without a police corps for nearly a month. The police decided to ridicule the federal forces so they started to fight with rocks and slingshots …. Funny thing is that for a while not having the police armed proved to be a sort of blessing in disguise, crime went down and the city was calm. The federal police are still in Tijuana but the bad guys seem to have grown restless so everything is back to the same smut as always.

Tijuana has always been a little clandestine for puritan güeros from the US. Americans have been coming to Tijuana since the prohibition era to get shots of tequila down south and the stream of gringos hasn’t let up since then.

Tijuana, however, has also been getting loads of news from an unusual front, its arts.

As always, the cultural duality that permeates its citizens is the source of admiration both abroad and at home. There are writers whose lingo is well admired and a source of admiration for many. Many Chicanos hail from the city, Luis Alberto Urrea and Lalo ALcaraz are some of them. The tijuanenses which tend to embrace its mexicanness tend, however, to ignore its American side due to indoctrinated ideology of refusal for anything gringo. Spanish writers from Tijuana are the likes of Federico Campbell and Luis Humberto Crosthwaite. Yes, with last names like that they still insist in being an all mexican or nothing lot.

Some L.A artists have said best:

we’d like to proclaim the Mexican City of Tijuana as the new “center of the art world”. Henceforth, we think that all trends in contemporary art should be set by those artists residing in Tijuana, and that international artists should trek to the city along the U.S./Mexico border in order to find inspiration, make connections (and of course sales), and study and work with some of the finest artists in the world.

There is Yonke Art as well.

Musicallywise there is world acclaimed Nortec, Julieta Venegas and a host of other people which escapes my mind now.

There is a blog culture as well but seems quite dormant these days.

I hope la Raza de LA, Aztlán proper, receives this jerk like he deserves it, like the traitor he is to mexican democracy!

boicot

For more info where this non-democratic friendly fiend you can click here.

Want to send your letter of protest to the center which is to host this undemocratic fellow?

To: lbuckley@musiccenter.org

Subject: Fox

I am offended as a Mexican citizen to read you are having Fox (the man who betrayed Mexican democracy)speak at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. This thing that you are doing is sending the people of Mexico a clear message that you value those who undermine people’s rights and democratic values.

Pic

Aztlan

I found this pic over at flickr. Viva la raza.

Firm Contracted to Build Fence on US-Mexico Border is Fined for Hiring Illegal Workers

One of the firms working on the US-Mexico Border Fence has been fined $5 million for hiring illegal immigrants. This controversy was ironically predicted by comedians such as George Lopez, who jokingly says in his new act, “They want to build a fence along the border to keep out Mexicans, but who’s gonna build it?” Answer: Mexicans.

The Golden State Fence Company will not only pay a major fine, but two of its executives will have to serve jail time for the hirings.

Wonkette has a wee bit more

what this decade needs foremost
is a Richie Valens

Never
in the course of humanity
has there been
a better time
to be
a
Xicano
ese.

Prouder can’t One be.

méxico

Tagging México in Technorati can really give a jolt to ones self-steem. Really. A throw back to the days of the Black Legend. Jíjole.

lyrics here

One must understand the vortex
Xicanismo
eyes
everyday

If the aztecs counted 52 for every end
Xicanos can hope for less in one generation.

Renewal
is in door

We face an existancial crisis every 30 years

like a blood transfusion

.

El problema “latino” en Estados Unidos

El profesor de la Universidad de California en San Diego, Jorge Mariscal, resalta la desunión de los latinos para lograr reformas a su favor. Ante la problemática de los hispanos, visualiza una literatura empapada con la ideología de la neoasimilación.

Enrique Mendoza Hernández

A propósito de las elecciones para renovar el congreso federal en el vecino país, el Doctor Jorge Mariscal, profesor del Departamento de Estudios Chicanos y Latinos de la Universidad de California en San Diego, platicó recientemente con ZETA sobre la cultura chicana, la división de las comunidades latinas, la falta de una agenda política profunda en cuanto a asuntos migratorios, el renglón electoral traducido en muro fronterizo y la forma en cómo ha evolucionado, a grandes rasgos, la literatura chicana.

El Movimiento Chicano, aquella comunidad prácticamente contracultural de los 60s surgida en pro de los derechos civiles en “el otro lado”, hoy se encuentra dividida y hasta desconocida por los inmigrantes recién llegados en busca del “sueño americano”, sobre todo por los más de 16 millones de latinoamericanos que arribaron a Estados Unidos de 1990 a 2002. Las diferencias son evidentes:

“Los mexicanos ricos en los malls en La Jolla (California) o El Paso (Texas), tienen poco en común con los migrantes que pizcan fresas, empacan pollos o trabajan en los swap shops; los recién llegados desconocen el mundo del chicano de la segunda, tercera o cuarta generación”, dice el activista de YANO (Youth And Non Military).
Read the rest of this entry »

(The sorry state of politics in the Chicano community)

By: Herman Baca, President
Committee on Chicano Rights

The 2006 elections are over! President George Bush and his Republicans party have righteously lost mainly because of voter’s opposition to the war in Iraq. Democrats have reaped the benefits by winning both the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate. As for the Chicano community the political question remains, how did we fare politically with the elections? Did we remain the same, go backwards, or move forward?

The question has to be put in context. I remember when I first got involved (1968) in Chicano politics with the Mexican American Political Association (MAPA) that their was one elected Chicano in the state legislature, Assemblyman Alex Garcia from Los Angeles, and in San Diego County one elected person of Mexican ancestry, Councilman Louie Camacho from National City.

To further answer the above question, we should look at what happened in National City, California (my home town) because as I have stated in the past: it is a microcosm of what is going to happen in California in the not to distant future.

National City, like most cities in California with large Chicano populations, is an old city, the oldest after San Diego proper. Also as will be the case in California the majority population (65%) is of Mexican ancestry, and Anglos with 20% of the population the minority. Economically, NC is the poorest in San Diego’s County and suffers from some of the worst social, economic and political conditions. Like most Chicano communities in California those conditions include, unaccountable politicians, the highest crime rate, worst police community relations, housing, recreational services, youth and senior problem, to name a few.

Politically, the city government is presently controlled by “Hispanics” Mayor, Nick Inzunza and City Council persons, Louie Natividad, Frank Parra, and Rosalie Zarate. However as is the case in other Chicano communities in California, the Anglo minority continues to control National City’s economy, politics and “Hispanic” politicians. Reasons for this are the massive economic power of police, firemen, city unions, Chamber of Commerce, Mile of Cars, builders, developers, and lobbyists, most who do not reside in the city. These outside interests control politically by providing contribution to “go along” His-her-panic politicians, while the right wing pro-business Republican controlled San Diego Union endorses and props them up.

So the question remains, have Chicano communities such as National City’s and others in California after 38 years of fighting issues, registering people, fielding candidates, campaigning for and against propositions, recalls etc, gone backwards, remained the same, or moved politically forward after Tuesday’s election?

In my opinion, after 38 years of political involvement and reviewing Tuesday’s election results, we are going backwards!

In California, Ex. Lt. Governor Cruz Bustamante, a candidate for Insurance Commissioner, who was the first Chicano to be elected to statewide office in the last 125 years, was the only Democrat to lose state wide office by being soundly defeated! With Bustamante’s defeat, California’s Chicanos, 35% of the state population are now left without representation in California state wide elected offices. In other words, back to the 60’s!

Locally, especially in National City the political answer is even more conclusive. National City Chicano community after Tuesday’s election is witness to the unbelievably political spectacle of “Hispanic” politicians, the mayor (run out of office after being accused of being a slum lord), and 3 “Hispanic” council persons handing political leadership over to an Anglo, (elected Mayor Ron Morrison) who represents 20% of the population.

While there is nothing wrong with a qualified Anglo (with a track record) of serving and leading the majority population, the historical political fact is that the Chicano community has never been politically represented. Whether newly elected Mayor Ron Morrison proves to be different remains to be seen.

Other troublesome voting factors in Tuesday’s election were: only 33% of NC 15,901 registered voters (4875) bothered to vote, and the arrogant attitude of “Hispanic” mayoral candidates who refused to respond to questions, or state their positions on issues to a survey forwarded by our organization.

With the low voter turn out, the above attitudes, and lackadaisical campaigns of the out of touch “Hispanic” candidates, Anglo Mayoral candidate Ron Morrison cruised to an easy victory. One that will now allow him to govern National City, with barely a 12% mandate out of 15,901 registered voters!

Other regional races involving “Hispanics” provided the same disastrous results. In Chula Vista (a community with a heavy population of persons of Mexican ancestry) first time Mayor Steve Padilla got handily beat by right wing Republican Cheryl Cox. In Escondido two racist incumbent councilpersons, Marie Widman and Dick Daniels who supported the racist anti Mexican can’t rent to Mexicans ordinance cruised to an easy victory. This in spite of a valiant effort by Ms. Olga Diaz who received only 15% of the vote in a city where the population of persons of Mexican ancestry is close to 50%!

Even though their was some political success at the lower levels of the political chain (school boards, council seats, etc.) it should be obvious by the disastrous election results that if even though our population has increased by leaps and bounds, our political involvement, astuteness and representation has not. At best we are living politically with the illusion of inclusion, and at worst appear to be returning back to the 1960’s! Time for La Raza Unida Party?

First found at la Prensa-San Diego and then copy pasted without authorization because this stuff needs to be spread.

I liked the following political cartoon by T. Sifuentes P.

I did so because it typifies to the dot the inmigration problem between US and México.

On the one side we see Uncle Sam leaning against a wall that our good friend Jorge doble U Arbusto signed into law. On the other a what may be perceived as a mexican peasent trying to hold back Uncle Sam’s weight.

It is laughable because one of the many current storms hitting México these days is the fact that güero Americans are more and more choosing several mexican states as their primary choice of retirement these days.

So many states in México, say, Baja California and Baja California Sur are being flooded by retirees of all kinds from the US.

What is the inmigration verbal tit for tat rethoric gonna do for our North American lives is yet to be known.

Yet, as an spectator, I can’t help but see irony in all of it.

The iberoamerican, as we are known in Spanish lingo, in the cartoon, is trying to hold back a Güero civilization that is already in place and Uncle Sam reclining against a wall they themselves built to detain a force they don’t understand.

There are many interpretations here at once.

But one can’t help seeing the irony reflected in the cartoon. And am all for it.

I just asked Logovo to send me some pills. Mind you I just want them for the looks. There is something about having the medicine in my house that is comforting.

I guess that one can go on about nostalgia and all that but for me it seems to be more than that. Seeing the product in my bathroom cabinet makes me feel at home. I know it’s weird.

So everytime I leave Sweden for Aztlán I inevitably end up carrying wads of medicine that in most parts goes unused, out of date and in thrash cans.

I guess am a real Xicano, after all, I also tend to recurre to household medicines passed on on to me by my kin. I already introduced the honey and lemon cure for coughs to my kiddos and I told them just about probably the same stuff my own did to me.

However, seeing the old medicine boxes are there for more than just easing the longing. They are their to remind me of my past, just like honey and lemon.

logorrhea

I can’t recall what Shakespeare play was it that I noticed a small flaw, it was in the chain of command somewhere.

I noticed it and my teacher just remarked that there are always flaws somewhere. This brought to memory the only Australian I have ever read and enjoyed: Patrick White.

Now, watching the film Mission Imposible III, I am again reminded of said episodes from a long past.

I watched the movie and said to myself: My god, the gringos are afraid of the future: We mexicans expect ours to become to the point of the letter. That is, we know we have it coming.

Yet gringos do really live a fantasy world don’t they?

After writing this post on my Spanish blog am convinced the latter holds more than a grain of truth in it.

As an Agonist reader, I am often appalled by what is churned out via the newswire. Not appalled because the news make it to the front pages [or blog chatter] but rather by what I consider deterioration of that America that raised me. And I think am not alone. After all, the people that bother to go through the paces of blogging a news article at the Agonist do so because they find said news somewhat touching, alarming. Disturbing.

I suppose I ought not to have an opinion on American politics but I inevitably end up doing so eitherway for reasons best explained below.

I am not a US citizen so why should I give two rats about deterioration of the America that saw me fit to be one of its own? California took care of me for many years, shaped me after its image and many of my relatives call California its home, heck, my eldest daughter is a Californian born child. Despite what Malkin might say about my previous status in California or that of my child, having grown up there and having my child born there, there is something that many US citizens fail to understand about the Southwest and northwestern Mexicans: love of land. We have historical ties to the land that law abiding citizens from the rest of the federation fail to grasp in their logic based notions of what a nation ought to be constituted of.

So even if I have no US citizenship I still belong to the culture by geographic default as well as liaisons provided by persistent US politic noise from the cherished old family.

Hence, it is therefore interesting to see this backward progression of progress catapulted by malignant organs at the very heart of the constitution of America. Yes, I know, I have a reference of an America that ceased to be a long time ago. By that I suggest the progressive and concerted effort of the dismantling of longstanding American values in favour of raw power, spoused mostly by the Rightwing of American politics. There is almost an illusion that things have been this way for a long time. Leave it to Beaver wasn’t just an American television show, for me, it was the very fabric of a lifestyle I lived.

This America, the freedom spousing one, is sadly, more and more becoming a distant memory. How has this become possible?

I don’t think that a doctoral thesis on the subject can cover enough ground to explain the latter. Yet the outcome is here, our worst nightmare come true. For many years we feared the red boogey man and our driving force was detente of this monster, a small levee preventing this night terror from landing in our shores. Alas! the wolf came dressed as a lamb.

The very society that we avoided, worked so hard to demolish, instead, we imported. We got duped. A quack came by to our town and sold us quackery at a very high price. How else can one explain the model of society in our days when we give everything to government instead of being afraid of it as our culture prescribes? At the behest of the chief in arms we are ready to dismantle America to please our modern day politburo.

There is, however, no turning back, we like macho police people who use the long arm of the law to comply with our innermost desires, and fears. I suppose white America had to be next, we Mexicans, blacks, reds and Asians have been experiencing the brunt of American law down our throats for decenniums on end. Countless politicians have played this card for personal gain, contrary to our past as a culture, but hey, who wants to look back to our past to learn from our forefathers to lead us in this brave new world?

Our own personal wild West and its gun touting sheriff lives on.

I suppose that it had to happen someday, America lives a life draped in a starry flag that twinkles to draw attention to its whole and less to its parts. So that Mexican history and its living culture in the southwest goes largely unnoticed in favor of more whole common traits such as white America or black America; direct talk about mexicans in the US tend to tilt towards the legality issues of the culture in US territory. The law this or that.

Be that as it may it still breaks my heart to read news of people being arrested for expressing thought. Every time someone gets arrested or harassed by government cronies sends shivers down my spine because there is a change going on that I dislike.

For good or bad, it is here now. The killing has been done, ’tis time to ask the questions.

Reading the blog of the year, Sendero del Peje, I found this post on their site:

Ya empieza a chillar la Kimberly por su relacion con el racista hijoeputa James Sensenbrenner.

En www.kimberlyclark.com sacaron esta nota:

“Kimberley-Clark is a publicly owned company, and has no heirs, as has been alleged in unfounded statements circulating in the internet. Congressman James Sensenbrenner is simply one of thousands of shareholders of our company, and his political beliefs on immigration are solely his own.”

I was tempted to pass the torch and allow the propaganda to go on but as I searched the above site there was no news release as Sendero del Peje states.

Either way, the boycott continues as I see it.

And get a load of these hipocritical muthaf***ers:

Rep. James Sensenbrenner is at the center of what appears to be a classic case of hypocrisy and crony capitalism. In case you’ve forgotten, Sensenbrenner is the chief advocate of a get-tough approach to undocumented immigration. He rails against illegal immigration as this nation’s biggest national security threat and pushes harsh enforcement and builiding a wall around America as solutions. Now a new report reveals that Rep. James Sensenbrenner is not only making money from companies that use undocumented labor but also from his investments in firms receiving contracts for the government’s border security program that Sensenbrenner champions. No wonder he has pursued the immigration issue so fiercely he’s earned the name “pit bull .”

Go read Tom Paine for more on this.

Finally, I think I pretty much got rid of all the readers that I accumulated over the years. Intrinsic nihilism what not.

Well, not entirely, I am afraid that I have to be more honest in my rudeness.

Fact of the matter is that I am a trilingual writer. No if’s and’s or but’s, fair and square I must admit that being the trilingual as I so often laud ain’t a piece of cake. I often argued that there was no diference between languages since in the rock bottom end I am but one person who happens to master three languages. I argued, in all earnest, that I am the sum of all those languages hence I should have been able to be a consistent writer in the aforementioned languages. Alas! I wasn’t.

I suppose if I kept my opinions shorter these might contribute towards a smoother and more manageable enterprise. This so happens to be my achiles heel. I tend to write long pieces and this tends to wear me out. So writing in three languages is no easy task.

If I count the days when I did manage to write reasonable bits of text based elocutions then the numbers will not tend to be impressive at all.

Since the balance of the past years, a little more than 3, has been heavily tilted to Spanish it is Spanish where you will find more consistency in blogging as far as daily entries are concerned. Neither English nor Swedish can match the overwhelming expression of thought that I have dedicated to it using Spanish as the language medium to express said thinking.

Spanglish gets token use, few pieces in my repertoire of blog entries in both Spanish and English.

Truth be I am mostly a Spanish writer. So far. I say so because I believe I have finally come to a point were the things I had to say in Spanish have practically been said. I find myself leaning more towards the germanic aspect of the linguistic sphere that dominates my thought process.

The experience has been enriching for a number of reasons. One, I found out I am not the language I speak but that which I use.

This tends to cause a tectonic shif in a host of values. Were I am a certain value carrier in the one language this vale tends not to directly be carried over to the next language. Most monolinguals will fail to appreciate the last cognitive piece. Monolinguals will tend not to experience beyond their own point of reference that their language gives them. There is no trascendence beyond what Spanish calls as a cosmovision. That is, the realm that encompasses every language. I suppose politicians of all sorts tend to argue for the nativists approach, after all, it is easier to deal with monolinguals than bilinguals.

Well, well, well. What do we have here.

The past two weeks have been rather interesting for mexican politics, so to judge.

The moral head of the Catholic church in México, Norberto Rivera, has been tied to a pedophile. This has kept mexican cartoonist busy, some of the pics here, here, and here.

They acuse the cardenal of abetting and concealment of known pedophiles within the church.

The stinging blow comes from none other than good old Aztlán, Califas, or the good ol’ USA for you non-chicano peeps.

As soon as they landed in México, to present their accusations, they were stopped by mexican migra.

The pic of the whistleblowers being detained by mexican migra agents here.

Felipe Calderón, México’s president elect guy, has declined to say anything on the matter.

This has only aided the left. AMLO, remember him? Is getting stronger and Felipe Calderón hasn’t seen the day of light on his electoral victory. Shrouded in the dark of maquiavelian politics one wonders who is behind these right out scandals that are shaking politics south of the border.

I don’t believe in coincidences so my first thought is to ask who is AMLO getting help from in ol’Aztlán? Or as my old latin ancestors said: Cui bono?

Are the effects of the anti-Bush movement trickling down to México or is this real as in the “here and now” and not a chain of predestined events?

Who knows, but it is of utmost interest to see that even dirtier laundry from across the power hierarquies spectrum are also rearing its tentacles.

A mexican- arab rich guy by the name of Kamel Nacif Borge has also been tied lately to the pedophile image of México. Nacif has just managed to stain several political heads in the Mexican congress with a Vicente Fox scurrying to control damage though the head that was tainted by the allegations was from the Old PRI cadre.

In spite of all these scandals Forbes decides to call a meeting of the richests witches in SA and call it a business as usual day in México.

Why?

Why demonize the so far pacifist left in México and poke it as a hornest nest?

Who stands to benefit from so much unrest?

On the one hand we have people rocking the moral conscience of the mexican people, our leaders are so corrupt their potruding bodies are unbearable and on the other hand the higher echelons insist that everything is as usual.

The Right is sitting it out, going about its business while the Left is crying out that Felipe Calderón is about to sell out all mexican oil to Halliburton [link is in Spanish].

So were are we in México? Is the power struggle in México reflecting power struggle in the US?

I am so frigging stoked, dang ese, this is HUGE.

Tezozomoc Aug/04/2006

De Suecia, come mensajes de personas that just can’t do without their weekly TEZOZOMOC CHISME! Pues Julio Martinez de yonderlesit.org (de Suecia), Tezzy hasn’t forgotten all his cuates, not only from the barrios del USA, pero también, we especially have you in our hearts and minds when you are so distanced from your Gente!! Glad you are still drawing your Chicano “Alma y Sentimientos” de La Prensa San Diego. We try to keep up our special ALMA de La Prensa and hope we (the hard working staff of La Prensa) will be able to maintain el espírito de mi gente, no matter where you are at. Suecia is a long way off but where there are two RAZA… I know that their will be our special sentimiento in the wind and it will be source of strength to you, when you find yourself isolated and lonely! El Indio TEZZY never forgets his GENTE no matter where they may be at!

Ey! What’s that? Nada ese, just a little rock on the corner of my eye, lemme me rub it off. Chale ese, can no one get a little dust in ones retinas theese days?

Escandaloso, yeah, I know, je!

Güeno, it gladdens me to no end to see myself before the thoughts and presence of good’ol Tezzy. Jo’er that guy has done bundles for San Diego Xicanos, heck, what am I saying? for Xicanos in Tijuana too!

Go give la Prensa-San Diego a read ese! What, still here? What are you waiting for ese? That Rumsfeld give a shit about this treaty? òrale, git otta hea!

Los ABC

Listen: Los ABCs ¡Qué vivan los muertos!
Sing Along
Download the song!

Los ABCs: is a five-minute Xicano docu-animation cataloguing the real-life testimony of skeletons who have returned to tell their stories of life and death at war. Do you remember your ABCs? No? Well, you’re in luck. Sing along with this group of animated Mariachi social documentarians who will guide you through in a history that will make you laugh, cry, and wonder why.

Via Leanos.net

From our own Richard Rodriguez ( de reciente acá se está haciendo muy relevante el compa que todos antes odiaban; everybody in the past little Xicano hate object seems to be becoming more and more relevant in American discourse, at times, I think, that he is the last real essayist America has, and he’s Chicano too!)

A great many Americans are alarmed by how much of Mexico is within the United States – the tongue, the tacos, the soccer balls, the street gangs, the Spanish Catholic Masses, the work force swarming into New Orleans in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. The extent of the Mexicanization of U.S. culture renders any notion of a fortified border irrelevant. Twenty-five years ago, Joel Garreau wrote “The Nine Nations of North America,” in which he described a nation he called “MexAmerica” – a puzzle to both Washington and Mexico City – encompassing much of the U.S. Southwest and Northern Mexico as well as Baja California. A quarter-century later, one is struck by how prescient Garreau was but also how modest his forecast was.

Aztlán as a metaphorical place to call home – From el Universal, Mexico News.

A TOOL OF LIBERATION What it has meant, in short, is an inspirational tool of liberation – a “metaphoric center place” in the words of the book’s two lead authors – for a Chicano population historically repressed at worst and ignored at best. Reviving the idea of Aztlán in the 1960s and 1970s not only reinforced for Chicanos a sense of where they came from, it allowed them to still be there.

Aztlán, then, is today not so much a mapable geographic location as it is an allegorical construct that, as lead authors and the exhibit’s curators Virginia M. Fields and Victor Zamudio-Taylor, tell us, “represents a place of origin, a point of emergence from the past, and a focus of longing.” Aztlán’s rediscovery coincided with early Chicano activism, which was led by (but not limited to) Cesar Chavez’s efforts to organize California farmworkers.

“Aztlán – as a symbol, an allegory and a real and invented tradition – served as a cultural and spiritual framework that gave Chicanos a sense of belonging and a link to a rich and extensive history,” Fields and Zamudio-Taylor write. As valuable as the point is, the language used to make it is unfor tunately typical of much of the text in “Road to Aztlán,”

I can’t help notice the noise that the right wingnuts make regards Aztlán and Chicanos and the whole culture clash enchilada. Specially English.

I still have a few problems with English. I grew up never feeling that English was part of me. It was a terrible atmosphere. Every vowel, every consonant got the third degree. You can imagine how that makes a brown kid feel surrounded by adults telling you that you don’t speak English when all along that is all you ever do.

The pocho phenomenon is a reaction to this constant language tit for tat in California. Pochos just realize what we dummier chicanos refuse by resisting full assimalitation: they integrate and merge in the culture forgetting and asserting their americanness at the cost of Spanish and our culture. At least they skip the language pains that are detrimental for later self-steem.

Up to this day I still don’t feel American enough. Though I am. It is easy to put in words and write down, yes, am American, pocho, chicano, watcha gonna do about it? Another to live it.

For many of us, English has always been a language of repression. The language that white americans use to put us down because our language alas! merge with our Spanish and churns out new sounds that are alien to ‘real’ English speakers.

That is why many Xicanos seek themselves to academia, to heal themselves, to prove the very thing they have always suspected, that they are American, that there is nothing wrong them.

I don’t know why gringos always feel we are never American and just wish they stopped there but they don’t. They have to have proof that we are Americans. Gringo Americans will always deny our existence. They are not ready to admit that our history is tied to the land and that even though part of our history doesn’t appear in English it sure does appear in Spanish. Why are they ready to deny us our existence as a people baffles me. It is almost as if they believe so much in their destiny, their place in history, that there is no room for nothing more tham white America in the good ol’ US.

Some of the Xicanos in what can, & only can, be deemed as a loose confedaration of goodie-two-shoes Xican@s bloggers who can’t seem to make up their mind about nothing, have sent me an email whereby I get accused of not only being a lousy pocho but a traitor to all semiotic principles to which Aztlán adheres to.

Yes, I said what?, too.

I know who hijacked the nascent xicano blogsphere from its craddle and turned it into this ugly no determination sissy crowd that we see now a days. But I won’t say who it was because I might hurt his feelings.

Either way I got the mail. These artificial xicanos would have me believe that because I don’t adhere to the Aztec/Maya mythology I am not a Xicano, besides, they say, you live in Sweden, not Aztlán. Ok.

First of all these are the same Xicanos that will defend spanish above all decrying that spanish is tantamount to xicanismo. That is a lie. For centuries there has been xicanos whose first language is not spanish but one of the 62 native languages from proper México that raza have brought with them to the US as they trekked the land towards Aztlán or that they had way before 1848. I think in particular the Apache languages and the Comanche and Yaqui languages just to name three.

Second of all. While the Aztec culture gave me a sense of belonging it also gave me a sense of feeling betrayed. My raza is Southwestern and most southwestern indigenous cultures are far and beyond the Aztec/Maya duality that tends to nurture the Xicano ens. This means that most of my real history has been erased from my conscience.

I am a proud Xicano from the Southwest and from the Norte of México. My language and manners will attest this any old day of the year for those who want to question my Xicano ens.

Dios mio, I didn’t know California was a spanish word either!

Could someone tell the Israeli friendly newsoutlet called Reuters, yes, I know, I am on the fringe of being called antisemitic, never mind am only 39 and really have not a shred of anything to do with nazis or any simpathies with a destruccion of beautiful Tel Aviv or beautiful arab-israeli Jerusalem under the rule of right wing nuts the likes of Binyamin Netanyahu otherwise known as bibi or the butcher of Lebanon known as Sharon in a coma, that California has and will always have a spanish history?

Or am I to understand that even though Reuters is a well and successful newsoutlet their reporters can and only can deal with the present when and only when the Reuters top honchos deem it it is worthy to dig into the past?

Can you imagine a California, a New Mexico, a Colorado, a Nevada, a Texas without a spansih past? English speaking Reuters seems to think so.

Dragging it through the mud for personal gain.

I mean what else can be said of those that are insanely obsessesed with the idea that Xicanos are helt bent in returning Aztlán to México. It be suicidal, I have argued, it would be a kamikaze act on part of the Chicano people to return Aztlán to the México yet the wingnuts in the US hearken nay.

Specially at technorati. The Aztlán tag is filled with right wing nuts decrying an invasion of sorts.

Take back Aztlán from the right wing nuts who’ll distort the very fabric of América. Xican@: everytime you write of Aztlán in your blog make a tag for it at so that technorati can pick it up because if we don’t do it now it might just be too late later.

Ok, there needs to be a Congress of Xicanos soon to speak about Aztlán, what it stands for and specially what kind of flag, if there be need for one at all, shall we lay our eyes upon.

PS: if the protests on May first didn’t make it clear for all, Tijuana is Aztlán!

Heck, let’s ruffle some feathers over at Michelle no ethics Malkin:Juan ManuelFoto originally uploaded by Juan Manuel. Kiss, kiss darling.

Cartoons

My fellow citizen Lalo Alcaráz, je, no, am not being biased but he does seem to subscribes to the same idea I have about xicanos not being immigrants, as pictured here:cucaracha Here is another one by Sergio Hernández that I think describes the nation’s mood rather well:sergio

Two rather interesting posts out of Brown Kingdom:

Why is it that you hear mexicans refer to the “whole” United States as LOS??

and

To be Chicano means to have learned of respect, to have practiced understanding, and to have been moved by social injustice to the point where the person sees it as his duty to fight wrongs wherever they may be found. Chicanismo also means to teach humanism and to love (with respect) all of our fellow human beings who also cling to this earth.

Go read’em now!

1970 – Diana vs. State Board of Education of California – Spanish speaking children were placed in classes for children with mental retardation on the basis of individual intelligence tests that were considered culturally biased.

Some rather interesting blogs are beginning to surface, for example, Xicano Militant Califas Xicano. This guy is giving out the word on other aspects of xicanismo, streetwise. He has been at it for a year now and the writ stuff is golden. His kind of xicanismo is one that I no longer associate myself with but one that I can certainly relate in many respects.

His semiotics deal a lot with aztec/mayan lore. I have long distanced myself from such mythology to associate my xicanismo with because of where I come from: Tijuana/San Diego. [for the unknown reader: I am not a US citizen, I am from Tijuana] I long ago concluded that while the aztec/mayan lore has nourished my soul it is the indian tribes of my birthplace [Kumai, Pai Pai, Navajo, Apache, Msyo, Yaqui] that are closer to me rather than the aztec or mayan brethen.

Either way, Xicano is a fine lad. There is enough dosis of self doubt to make it worth your time. I say go give him a read.

Giving a go to his blog I think that xicanismo and blogging is the very push that xicanismo needs to move on. I think that it is good that we write our own, independent thoughts about what we think xicanismo is, we are defining ourselves and that is muy bueno ese.

I realize that reading Octavio Paz was a bad taste of Castor Oil. I remember clearly refusing to read anything of him after I read El Laberinto de la Soledad. I was extremely offended by the chapter : Pachucos y otros extremos.

For some reason I thought it reflected the general attitude most mexicans have of us Xicanos. And it still does. In hindsight it has given loads of food for thought.

Oso does the chicano ensemble.

Many self called latinos are rather amused when they are made to look at themselves as they are.

Little do they realize that they are in the process of becoming, continuosly.

People who call themselves latino and proudly carry the star spangled banner in their veins, and ass if they could, will shed their latino roots immediately if questioned about their brown origins, as if being american meant not being latino or brown.

It is a state of continuos confusion both for the latino that sees not his or her latino roots as well as the one who dares open the can of worms that represents asking someone their true identity.

Am an American.

And not many americans dare question this oppressive state of being. This is so because America is always at war and hence ones americanness is always questioned. The number one lesson is to never be perceived as unamerican. And one will defend this idea of americanness to the end. It goes beyond citizenship.

To be American is to denounce all that is not american. Even if you are american the idea that you might have another language, another way of being is not only loathsome but immediately sets you apart from America.

So it is only natural to denounce ones origin. One is never at ease with ones americanness if one happens to be brown, or that a knowledge of another language is lingering at the back of ones head or burning flour tortillas in the oven.

It even gets worse when society sends conflicting messages that one ought to embrace ones cultural background. So we allow ourselves a certain tad of permissiveness by admiting our past but never our present. Yes, we were once that but we are not that now.

That is why so many hispanics allow themselves to be humiliated at the registration offices of many government buildings when one pronounces ones first and last name. They twist, chew up and spit out a concoction güero and their assimilees invent on the spot by spelling our names wrong and step on the goddamn form with so many foreign characters if one asks for a correction of ones name. One wonders indeed why such a name like Schwarzenegger sounds better and provokes more patience for spelling than Bustamante or Navarrette. Though hispanics are not the only ones to undergo this process of americanness. All people of color go through it.

Explicate it.

Oh no you didn’t.

Boy do I have bones to pick here.

I shall be dishing out more than I bargained for but one can’t overstate the deliciousness of the subject. Right now I am about to do serious deconstructing over at Wikipedia and give them a verbal whipping or two.

Coming soon, more Xicano rants than expected, stay tuned.

Wow. There is a Xicagoblogsphere. Gotta love that X. Bloggeros Xicagoenses. Gone are the days when our good friend, now proud mother of one, http://www.injust-spring.com/ was a loner on the Chicago blogsphere denoting herself as Xicana.

Now they are 12 of them. Hell, when a good writer like Sandra Cisneros comes out and writes her Americana lifestyle to the acclaim of the nation you know that something is brewing and sprawling.

There is something about Chicago that mexican americans there are not that repressed when it comes to their cultural identities. That is, they readily seem to embrace their mexicanness as opposed to Californios such as the writer at hand. Californian mexicanos have a ready made grab bag of repression stories. We were forbade to speak Spanish and that is one theme that includes corporal punishment. Mexican americans from Chicago don’t seem to have grown up deploring the one end of their cultural mestizaje. This could have an easy explanation such as the constant fientlighet atmosfär som råder i Kalifornien, je, couldn’t resist saying that in Swedish. What I just said that that could be partly due to the constant animosity that tends to pervade in California between the two cultures.

It’s as if its not dirty to be mexican or an able spanish speaker in Chicago though I could be very wrong.

I wrote this on my blogspot blog in 2003:

When it comes to languages it seems to me rather curious the stance some people take. I remember as a child how embarrassed I was to speak spanish. I recall how one day we came to my grandmother’s in TJ and how, inspite of being raised by her, and just only two years before all I spoke was spanish I claimed not to. English was my de facto lingua. Later, as I grew I did everything in my power to disguise my spanish accent to the point of only thinking, eating, walking and peeing in english.

However, we are products of our environment and the oppressive years in California, oppressive for me because I lived in such an environment, spanish was worst than the black plague, it gave you away as a foreigner, in your own country.

That’s why I get goose bumps whenever I come across blogs that blend in spanish and english as if that is the most natural thing in the world to do. Blogs like Fernando Graphicos who not only embrace spanish but you can see that it is an integral part of their lives.

I think it is natural for the development of the Xicano community to start embracing their cultural roots more and more. I think that Xenophobia is a bad thing for America and that it doesn’t allow for real democracy to bloom in America. English speakers will now have to give leeway for the other native tongues to start making inroads in the conscience of Americans. Spanish speakers have a long tradition in the legal framework of the nation that spells right out that Spanish is a language which is part of America. Spanish is american and it will not deteriorate English speaking America just as French didn’t ruin Canada either. English speakers really need to stop bullying bilinguals or native american speakers because in order for America to move forward it needs to start embracing not only other languages but its native population as as well.

And Xicanos are as native as you get.

Kellog Cesar ChavezPocho extraordinary and a real spanglish speaker and writer at that, (Recycled) Cholo Knows …, has in his blog directed us to an abomination of sorts. No entiendo. What is it gonna take to convince the commercial aspect of the consuming world that mexicans/latinos deplore having the people they look up to used for commercial purposes?

More at it here and here.

It is disgusting ese.

I got my first anti-aztlán comment in like eons or shoud I say first one at all? Come to pappa baby, let me see you walk …

I think that this “Aztlan” bull-s**t needs to end NOW! The Government claims that it is finally going to do something about it, but until I see bus loads of illegals heading home south of the boarder I will not be satisfied. What we need to do is take apply the lessons learned from the Eisenhower administration in Operation Wetback. A similar policy is desperately needed now, more than ever.

Read the rest of the comment here.

It was written by this guy whose ip address is stated as Vancouver, in Washington.

I always wondered a lot about the term Aztlán and Google. This idea of ours is being trashed around by ultra neo conservatives like a threat greater than you-know-who.

We got history behind us, they, they just have a stupid argument based on ideology.

Dios mio, like finding the Holy Grail:

LV: The problem is very deep here. And I hope that in this interplay, as we get cultural exchanges and we get more aware, that Mexico will begin to see it’s own reflection in Chicano works like we see ourselves in Mexican works.

VP: And is that already happening?

LV: I think there’s a great deal of dialogue that’s happening. It’s a flow. I think San Diego/Tijuana is one of the key joints in the whole mechanism here, because there’s a steady flow here. And there’s really in some case very little distinction between a Chicano in Tijuana and a Chicano in San Diego.

Híjole, this is huge.

I have been arguing for this possiblity here, here, and here albeit in spanish.

I usually don’t mingle my Spanish and English though am known by my most fervent reader, editor, proofreader, slacker, güevón, patron (that is, me) to occasionally indulge in doing so. So far I have managed to mesh the prime philosophy behind my chicanismo, that is, Xicanismo from Tijuana. I am from two nations albeit my xicanismo of lately has had the gull to push me into stating what I have always been, a Mexican citizen. People think that Xicanos are a social construct from the US. I would like to think that I am proof that that is not so and fervently will go to no lengths in discussing with everyone that because I exist, Tijuana must be a realm of Aztlán too. Don’t ask how much of this stuff is a social construct. I suppose that some of it is, gained knowledge that just piles up on old stuff like an Aztec pyramid. I base all of my xicanismo on linguistics. The truth, the being in me that cries out Xicano, bases his ens on language. I trace my being on the spoken word.

I speak therefore soy.

But the point of this is not that but the following. A little background is need though. Eduardo Valle is in self imposed exile because his sort of journalism brought him too close to the mexican mafia. He left México for security reasons and ever since has been writing for newspapers. I have followed his career somewhat and read when chance presents itself what he has to say. I have been doing so for the past diez o quince años or so. For the first time, today he has disappointed me. You can read the rest on the post why was I left muy encabronado.

En referencia a: ¿Jim Crow o John Brown?

Ideologicamente estás equivocado y realmente no estas sintonizado a la esencia mexicoamericana. Mucho más desde donde estas (creo que te encuentras en Washington) pues no estas donde las cosas de Aztlán se discuten en su mero apogeo, el Southwest.

Digo ideologicamente equivocado porque eres monolingüe y tu cosmovisión sólo abarca la ideología interpuesta por el español.

Acusar a los mexicoamericanos de no decirle nada a Hungtinton deja ver tu carencia de lectura en la red o por lo menos de frecuentar tu biblioteca más cercana. Deja ver mucho tus creencias personales además de la extensión de tu comprensión de este grupo étnico [¿qué tanto te has molestado en estudiarnos?] que nada tiene que ver con tu nacionalismo o tu frustración. Por estos días hay cientos de blogs que cubren un buen el espectrum de la comunidad mexicoamericana del Southwest. Te recomiendo que nos leas a diario por lo menos un año para que te puedas formular una idea de lo que semos. Busca en la red la respuesta y leenos en inglés ya que en español casi no escribimos [muy poco diría yo, pero ya nos estamos reacostumbrando] además de que estoy seguro que nuestro español no lo comprenderias por no tener el bagaje cultural para ello además del histórico prejuicio que la clase media mexicana ha inculcado a los monolingües hispanoparlantes sobre nosotros los mexicoamericanos.

Te recomiendo que leas Latinos, Global Change, and American Foreign policy. Un proyecto de la Stanley Foundation en colaboración con The Tomás Rivera Center (1994), para empezar, es un buen punto de partida.

Tú lo que buscas es un lider que se ajuste a tus criterios políticos dentro de Aztlán y eso no va a suceder por dos cosas y no por cuestiones nacionalistas: Una, estamos muy sintonizados a las ideas sobre racismo tanto mexicanas como estadunidenses, lo que tu ves como debilidad nosotros vemos como fuerza, creemos en la constitución americana; dos, compartimos el sueño americano, el mismo que se puede leer sugieres descartemos, no porque lo queramos sino por cuestiones religiosas, somos tanto católicos como protestantes. Una dicotomía dificl de comprender y que lleva muchos años en estudiar.

Comprendo el proceso de adaptación que estas pasando, por eso pasamos todos, después del todo, ¿que llevas en el exterior? ¿10, 15 años? Se entiende, lo que no es comprensible son tus acusaciones sin fundamentos algunos que sólo conllevan a una meta, la distorción de la imagen de los mexicoamericanos en México.

The good xente over at la bloga have a good discussion going on. Not because the comments of the offices at Yonder Lies It received an answer but because it is clear to the xente del más allá, who for an odd reason of sorts, frecuent the offices, seem to be in agreement (though Geronimo keeps rather silent most of the times) that a Chicano Norton Anthology literature compilation is needed and I see it on the horizon. [yeah, that's a long ass sentence there, got a problem with that?]

Except that instead of naming it Norton Anthology we could name it like Santa Ana or Stockton Anthology maybe Zorro but that would be a long shot perhaps a lady heroine of sorts. Like the Pachuca Anthology literature for the vox populi in Aztlán proper. Cherrie Moraga or Gloria Anzaldua Anthology would read just as well. But the title we could discuss much later.

There are many threads to start a good huipil with here.

There are the linguistics aspects that I brought forth con todo y my cultural baggage. Though the very fine gente at vivir latino raised the issue of racism in the lengua issue I brought forth.

Make no mistake about it, when it comes to languages, the issues are not about racism. They are instead ones of purity. I understand that the word purity has that race purity what not, connotation but it has an entirely new sense when I use it with language. Instead there is what one can very well see as social fabrications of languages. Everybody thinks they speak real english though there isn’t such a thing as pure english. That notion is just a pure concoction from the last century that has managed to creep itself all the way to this century. In fact, english has about as much latin words in its vocabulary as about spanish does. Well, maybe not, but a good chunk of it composes much of the prestige vocabulary of english. [no, am not about to give you examples, you go find for yerself that ese!] American english speaks wads about it since much of its cowboy mythology is composed of words that have a root on the mexican spanish that helped compose the West/pioneer myth.

Be that as it may we continue con la literatura, in this case, literatura Chicana. Now, english and spanish have had a tumultous upbringing in the Southwest.

For the past 150 years or more english has had the upper hand. Spanish has had to bear the brunt of classroom spankings for utering its vowels in the midst of angloparlandia. Though the first european languages that the land of Aztlán heard were spanish vowels in all the splendor that the conquistadores and Friars used back then.

In this lingua fight, it is we the Aztlán generation that have had to bear the whips and lashes of both households. Both from the spanish part and the english part as well. We can not simply speak anything without having a rebuke at hand to remind us that we speak gibberish at best.

We don’t speak good english and worst yet, we don’t speak good spanish and even yet worst we don’t take care good of our siblings, the new Aztlán generations, from this violent circle. We simply allow the violent language to continue unchallenged with each generation taking sides with either spanish or english or every now and then a few wise voices stating that both languages are good this and that. Or having to hear, like Richard Rodriguez argues, much to the chagrin of the many in Aztlan proper, that english is our light that shines at the end of the tunnel.

It is hard to please two cultures. We have not managed to come across as a unifed entity, at best, we are a footnote in the many essays, commentary, books out there.

But that is ok. We are still defining ourselves. Though I must confess that the issues that we blanket ourselves with are very universal and literature, canon literature at that, is universal driven. Perhaps the issues lies in the universitality of our speech. Perhaps we need to take advantage of this. No matter what english or spanish have to say about it because by then, we will be a different lingua to be reckoned with.

tejaztlanI’ve seen Califas. Writing Califas in a piece of paper or anywhere else, your left buttock, for example, means that Aztlán is not too far from you. Usually the address is Califas, Aztlán. I suppose that Tejas would be the one to drape it self with the word Aztlán all over. Like a sarape from Saltillo. And get a load of that J in Tejas!

On the internet it is the Chicanos from Texas the ones that are putting up the fight for the rest of us. We Xicanos from Califas are seemingly the fashion staters. Texas, in my opinion seems more and more involved in this cultural identity on the politics of the nation. They say what they want to say and best yet, they have, for far longer than the Xicanos in Califas, putting up a fight for our political rights. We all have a dream, Aztlán. Yet Texas, more than any other state, seems to be working harder at it. In fact, Texas produces more Chicanismo than any other state in proper Aztlán. It seems to permeate it’s living life somehow. I don’t know why it is so but it is. I mean my political heroe (RIP) is Henry B. González.

I wrote this not so long ago:

I wish we had Henry Gonzalez around, the former Democrat from Texas who dared challenge Bush Senior then. In 1993, Flag Day he did the unthinkable.

Jeanne Beach Eigner from the San diego Union Tribune reported the incident thus:

During the 1988 presidential campaign, when George Bush attacked Micheal Dukakis for vetoing a bill mandating the recital of the Pledge of Allegiance in Massachusetts public schools, the members of the House of Representatives began a tradition of saying the pledge at the beginning of proceedings every day.

Three weeks ago on Flag Day, Rep. Henry Gonzalez, D-Texas, vented his outrage at the practice, reports Roll Call. ‘Nothing is sadder’ he said in a speech on the floor of the House, ‘than to see the herd instinct in taking the Pledge of Allegiance here in the House of Representatives. What is that pledge? That Pledge was not around until just three decades, three and a half, four decades ago … We have taken an oath, an that oath is to the Constitution, not the flag … Here we are, like a good little herd, reminiscent of the Hitlerian period: ‘Sieg Heil, Sieg Heil.’

Where o where art thou now Henry?

Así que saludos van pues, a la gente de Flaco Jímenez.

Tejaztlán can be found on the internet here.

More and better explained than in this post can be found here: Chicano Nationalism and Its Philosophical Roots in Texas


TIFTON — Saddened by the killings of six Mexican immigrants in his town, Mayor Paul Johnson flew their country’s flag outside his City Hall in their honor.

Foreign flags weren’t a first for the south Georgia city — Canadian flags routinely fly outside motels there in honor of snowbirds who drive through to spend their winters in Florida.

Johnson didn’t expect to be criticized for flying a Mexican flag. But a local radio station received seven back-to-back callers Thursday who said the U.S. and Mexican flags should not fly together.

Johnson, a veteran who is well versed on flag protocol, said he made the decision to fly the Mexican flag after consulting with the city attorney.

“I did that as an expression of sorrow to the Hispanic community,” said Johnson. “For those who we offended, I apologize, but I think it was the right thing to do.”

Read all about it straight from the hourses mouth at The Tifton Gazette
More at google

*** that’s a nice way to put your town on the map

Aztlan Raider

I got a hold of this post on Shovelware. Go read it, it’s full of godies from the San Diego-Tijuana border area, my area. And more text related theories on Xicanismo, links and what not. It’s an update, I know, am munching it as we speak, qué esperas, órale! I may spit out a few comments on it later, this is too good to let pass on a simply post.

For the first am thankful I was introduced to Sal Rojas, damn, has he got THE website and THE Blog.

Tags: Like Blown Away.

http://www.digitalaztlan.com/photos/default.asp

Alma Lopez has a blog! I’ll be damned homes! …

Luis Valdez: “Somos como extras”
Los chicanos ante Hollywood
Columba Vértiz

Luis Valdez y Edward James Olmos, acaso los dos más grandes creadores del cine y el teatro en California, Estados Unidos, cuentan a Proceso la reticencia de “la Meca del cine” ante el arte chicano, hablan del desconocimiento que existe sobre el mundo latino, de la lucha por competir frente a una concepción tan dura del mercado económico, y de la necesidad de combatir los estereotipos de los hispanos como los malos o criminales. La irrupción de mexicanos en Hollywood les parece tan positiva como la de los indocumentados, pues el intercambio entre México y Estados Unidos es completamente dinámico, lo cual hoy instan a reconocer “por las buenas y por las malas a la vez”.

El cineasta y dramaturgo Luis Valdez señala que el cine chicano no recibe el interés directo de la industria hollywoodense:

“Nos ven como un fenómeno, un reflejo de la cultura mexicana, por lo tanto mejor tratan directamente con México, por eso hay más entradas para nuestros colegas mexicanos que para los chicanos. Nosotros ya somos como extras, como si fuéramos el pilón, pero seguimos luchando…

“No culpo de ninguna manera a nuestros colegas mexicanos, al contrario, celebro los éxitos que han tenido y sigo apoyando todos sus esfuerzos para traer imágenes, pensamientos, otras ideas y visiones de México acá, a Estados Unidos.”

—¿Cuál sería el camino para los cineastas chicanos?

—Urge que se presten más a sus raíces, que hablen más de quiénes son.

All articles posted under fair use rules in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, and are strictly for the educational and informative purposes of our readers.

Go read a mi conciudadana Jade at Te darìa mi vida pero la estoy usando… Her acculturation just rips my guts apart pero that’s what the process indicates.

Para empezar, I`m in a new school in the US. I studied there before, a long time ago, and I missed being foreign because gringos think you can`t understand shit and since I`m a girl and my smile has dimples, people treat me like a princess. So that`s nice.

Pero la realidad ya es otra, los gringos blancos, the hot caucasians are simply not there. THEY are the strangers. Por cada gringo, hay 9 pochos, 3 asiàticos y 0.5 negros.
Recientemente dejaron salir a los gringos y ya los puedes ver màs seguido, pero los pochos estàn por todas partes (by the way, if you are an asshole who thinks I`m a pocha because I write in spanglish, fuck you, hablarè de mis problemas de lenguaje en otro post).

Ana Castillo is blogging, seemingly, full time. Viva Chicago ese!

While you are at it go watch a video that my conciudadano Ilich Sabotage made. It’s a fictional account of middle class drug dealers in Tijuana, it’s just as if it were the bare truth ese.

It did good to distant myself from my Xicanismo. I realize that writing the stuff that I would normally write in spanish in english will be of little appeal to the english blogsphere. There isn’t any interest yet in mixing the problematic of border xicanismo like mine that includes both english and spanish as its major sources of inspiration. I think that english xicanismo tends to rely on the past of Mexico to talk to itself and in order to identify and seek out its roots. While border xicanismo is more attuned to the problematic that affects both sides of the languages we have.

What am I saying? Am saying that semioticaly speaking border xicanismo tends to include more modern day problems in its daily life to try and make something of itself as opposed to the interior Xicanismo that tends to occur at the academic level and our near abroad such as Chicago, Ohio, Washington et al which seeks out the past to explain itself.

Before I hear the buts role in I am referring to Xicanos and not the causa, got it?

This idea needs more sharpning in order to make sense and I think that as I write more and more it will clarify itself. In the mean time, if the idea seems redundant and meaningless adding no new insight to the current ideas of Xicanismo I alone stand for its contents.

Vaya. I received with great astonishment the news that Elena is running for representative for Mexicans in her corner of the world. I know of no other person better suited for the job than her. I have been an avid reader of the travails that she has gone through in trying to help others meet their new culture with honor, decency and courage. At times, showing us the difficulties along the way in just trying to be nice to one another. If you think I am exagerating when I say that then I suggest you don yourself with not only spanish but mexican indigenous languages. Then walk the landscapes of the Midwest to try and help people adjust and make it through the day in a new environment, a new language in the fields of prejudice, ignorance and just plain disregard for others with only hope as a burning torch guiding the tired, the poor and hungry without a second thought.

Elena is best placed to represent Mexicans in Ohio because she understands both worlds and is an on hands person. She is not only well versed in the problems affecting the mexican community of Ohio and the rest of her community she is also there with them, trying to solve the problems with them.

I am a strong supporter of Elena Mary Costello Tzintzún. I believe
she will fully and honorable represent Mexicans and Mexican-
Americans. I encourage you to please elect Elena Mary Costello
Tzintzún as representative for all Mexicans in Ohio, Kentucky and
Indiana.

La codiciada bandera de El Alamo is the story of the La Jornada Article. A newspaper well known for its leftist tendencies and the like. I dunno who they are doing a favor with this headline and story. To top it off I read in the Agonist the very alarmist news that Texas: It’s Not Just For Whites Anymore! sardonic news for the unsarcastic challenged. Come on. What the fuck. Why are we always deemed less than the White american? WE too are American. We have argued in the pit of the abyss that we too are Americans & Quetzacoatl only knows how many full moons.

We are not a minority nor have ever been one. Tis your view White dude that sees us as such.

Ahora, la bandera esa, yeah. Resemblance, a battle that still burns holes in many hearts, least to say this one. Argh.

I wantcha to stop in your tracks right now and head on to lotería chicana‘s new site. I mean wow! Frazer from Seinfield style. I was blown away ese. If you are still reading this then you are not where you are suppose to be ese, what’s up with that? Git there now homes!

I have a swedish-mexican mojado xicana daughter born in Califas. I myself am a mojado, a xicano wetback. Today the star spangled gave me goosebumps when I heard it sound its majestic noise. Am I entitled to celebrate it? I grill today. In my swedish backyard somewhere in the swedish Highlands of Smaland my daughter wondered what is the 4th of July.

Ay güey! Nunca pensé que the day would come. One of the darling conversations that so closely unite us Xicanos is Mexican racism. Nothing would give that cup of chocolate more flavour than tearing apart the thin veil of racism in our culture. Long has been known to us how our brothers and sisters, granpas and granmas, mothers and fathers would slightly through us off with their racist remarks. Specially when babies are born, ay que morenito, ay que blanquito, and it’s the blanquito one that gets the better end of the stick ese, always, yeah, we prietitos have always borne the brunt of the lesser praise at the cradle. Y no te forgets about those damn soap operas, puro whity on the top homes. Híjole, tears us apart our little hearts to see those indios do all those minial jobs. Y qué me dices de the worst insult one can receive en México, pinche indio they say. Let’s see how mexican denial that we are not racist fare in this storm, pero no, look at’em, ya están deciendo que they don’t understand us and the like. Y what about that movie where la güera esa da un baby negrito? Yeah, you know what am talking about, yeah Angelitos negros, that always used to bring tears to Aunt Luchita. A ver que pues.

Not lon ago yet in eon years blogwise, Elena my buddy, pal, amiga, compa, friend and all that wondered about Spreading God’s Love. I even added my two centavos to the issue.

Today I find two of my favorite blogs in that isue wondering about the issues that so gives so much food for thought.

he reflects on how different people are the further they come from. Something that has always intrigued me is how few groups from San Diego come down to work with us. We have groups from all over the states, the western half of Canada and one group who comes every year from Australia to serve the people of Tijuana, but very few from within a hundred miles of the border.

Read the rest here.

It gives such a nice glimpse into that world that so otherwise passes unnoticed in my city. Cool.

Just when you thought it couldn’t become more obvious …

Aztlan

The future in a video game …

http://www.aztlanrpg.net/

I saw this pic over at DDBlase. It is the small gestures that make you gush with pride:

Cinco de Mayo  US stamp

TECHNICAL DETAILS

Issue: Cinco de Mayo
Denomination & Type of Issue : 32-cent Commemorative
Format: Self-adhesive Pane of 20 (one design)
Series: Holiday Celebrations
Issue Date & City: April 16, 1998, San Antonio, TX 78284
Illustrator: Robert Rodriguez, Pasadena, CA

I subscribe to google alerts. I receive news of la raza whenever the words Chicano, Chicana, Xicano and Xicana blip on the radar of the internet galaxy. So far they have been all American newspapers. That’s one, second, a few have come the way of spanish newspapers since the word chicana i sthe same word for chicane. Kind of reminds one of la Malinche, pocho and hell, those negative connotations haunts us like la Llorona does, it is there wherever three or more mexicans find themselves gathered.

However, the recent newsalerts of lately just crack me up. The 5 de Mayo celebrations that the raza is associated with are viewed from the anglo angle in a rather odd way with caution and warnings as guides of the ever expanding fiesta. This year the headlines bear puritan thinking such as Save Cinco de Mayo from tripping into the gutter, an article that curiously enough warns that we not allow 5 de Mayhem go the way of Saint Patrick’s day.

Others just don’t seem to grasp these Other American citizens and their strange customs: Hundreds celebrated Hispanic heritage during this year’s Cinco De Mayo parade. Hispanic heritage? I suspect that reporter was hungover when he wrote that, and in Bakersfield CA of all places!

Yet what inevitably remains and this has been so since my days in Aztlán and just as almost a part of the narrative that flows around these days, is the explanation of just what 5 de Mayo is. Is it mexican independence day? Is it Budweiser day? Is it Chicano day?

There is this need to explain ourselves to the rest of America, as if the dialogue that occurs across the tabloids, the newspapers, the overall media, was one were there is a need to explain to a higher authority just what the heck is this strange noise being made. There is a need and a demand to explain ourselves to the rest of America not for understanding but to alienate.

We can never be part of it or be accepted as part of America as if what we celebrate lacked an ever essential americanness to it and is therefore alien to the very fabric of the US.

Heck, why can’t we just have a celebration without having the need to explain it away to smithreens? Why can’t there be a day to just be Chicano. Celebrate our americanness in as much as we celebrate el cuatro de julio? You don’t see newspapers articles everywhere asking why is it that chicanos have carne asada and mariachi during the course of that day. Really, more than anything else, more than trying to pervert the holiday with beers let it not turn it into an alien holiday.

It’s a Chicano, Chicana holiday period.

Remember my post unscathed and alive whereby i related a blogsphere incident regards Tijuana identity? What i failed to take into account and just dawned upon me to tell my Xicana/o readership (is one allowed to use indiscriminately the suffix –ship when one but speaks of two? you’re damn right one can!) is how ignorant and prejudist seven headed eels reared their ugly electronic binary assumptions in monolingual and monocultural Mexico.

The assumptions ran from feeling pity for uprooted mexicans who found themselves in a cultural limbo (the link leads to a text in spanish written by Burgues) to people who radically complained about the constant memorabilia shopping spree we engage once on mexican soil like local Tijuana writer Rafa Saavedra says: Pochos who never learn to speak spanish y que vienen a comer tacos with mucho guacamole and to buy some galletas and cobijas pa’ taparse del frío racial en su home.

Inded, there is a belief that mexican natives have of Xicana/os that teeters on the border of despise. For local boys and gals in Tijuana all chicana/os and Xicana/os are nothing but pochos. Unlike we who like to distinguish between a pocho and a Ch/Xicana/o, local folk on mexican soil fail to differentiate the latter by any means. There is a common thinking best expressed succinctly by another blogsphere intellectual from Hermosillo Sonora named, after the blog, Humphrey Bloggart according to him Xicana/os romanticize México and long after the motherland. The conclusion is that we are basically bastards whose father constantly denies our existence and nothing more.

But that wasn’t really what i wanted to write about today though be that as it may it did spring out of another thought that just dawned upon me, yeah, it dawns like crazy today!

i sudddenly realized a parallell betweeen the mexican culture and our Xicana/o culture: we both deny an integral part of our reason for being; this thought also, by the bye’s, came into being due to my cuatro de julio post from yesterday.

We deny, in as much as we can, our American aspect in the same manner Mexicans deny Cortes.

Ain’t that something now?

The good offices of Aztecpoet.com were kind enough to send me via internet Luis A. López recent book titled Warrior-Poet of the Fifth Sun, innercircle publishing 2004.

I must confess that if poetry has the quality to speak to the soul, Luis’s book not speaks but guides the path to be taken. This is Xicano poetry at its best and represents many of the spiritual dilemmas that we Xicana/os and Chicana/os battle within us in the everyday identity war field. His poetry soothes and describes in detail our inner spiritual wars; the conflict we have in dealing with our Spanish heritage; the loathing we have at times towards catholic dogma and the religious battle within ourselves to either believe the Christian God or our ancestors Gods, Quetzocóatl. There is also the fine fine tradition that stems all the way to Lope de Vega’s El Arte Nuevo de Hacer Comedias en Este Tiempo whereby Lope de Vega urged his countrymen to speak to them in their language. So does Lopez, and not only does he gives praise to other poets, he speaks to the universal in Spanglish. For let us not forget, and Lopez does not allow us to do it, spanglish is the language of our brethren from other parts of the latino world, the lingua franca amongst us latino who are bilingual and connects us to the Cuban, the puertorican, the Columbian. There is a profound sense of wanting to reach what Plotinus calls Beauty and the One. He reminds us of our nation Aztlán and speaks for the voiceless ones who cannot speak to monolingual America. He paints for us the streets as they are, were rutine meets the spirit of Hermes in those of us who need to detail what we see to others, yes Luis, you are meant to be a writer, and we can thank Quetzocóatl for that carnal.

I often find it amazing how America Gringa refuses to acknowledge some of its own history, twist it and bedmake it to sleep with the Other in its own house. I suppose it is easier for Gringo USA to see its own population thus. It is afterall, easier to manage since the Other in the United Gabacho States is a minority to whom the vast majority see nothing more than troublesome sectors, resistance fighters who do not fit in the “Good” category. Such is the misconception that Reuters recently reported on Aztlan and which you will find on the post below this one. I suppose it is easier for gringoland to see Aztlan as a cry of the return of lands (lost/gained?) from the 1848 mexican american war. Nothing can be further from the truth, in fact Aztlan is a concept, a semiotic idea to unite and to give a sense of identity to us who are impregnated with gringo and mexicano culture.

Aztlan can be best described by an act done by a man whose name is seldom seen or mentioned, he represents, in reality, the real cry Xicanos all over demand: Justice.

“ For most Americans the drowsy little village of Tierra Amarilla in northern New Mexico was first placed on the map June 6, 1967. On the second morning of the Arab-Isreali six-day war, newspaper readers all over the United States turned from the Sinai struggle to a national item that made them hastily recheck the dateline to be sure they were still in the Twentieth century.” Peter Nabokov

Reies Lopez Tijerina demanded that landgrants given to his descendents be honored by the US government, when this failed to materialize he raided a courthouse that sent shockwaves throughout the world wide over.

That is the one of the rallying cries for Xicanos in the US of America, that the Tratado de Guadalupe ne honored and that landgrants be honored, not that Aztlan be returned to a political establishment or institution.

Anyways, allows us to examine the article by Reuters, one done by a person who bears the name of Alistair Bell.

Let us see the repertoire of phrases which caught the eye of this citizen of Aztlan

Phrases from articles 1 to 3 are here:

“a warlike tribe with a passion for human sacrifice, wandered the badlands of central Mexico”
Hmmm, ok, wanna add some background on that that doesn’t give a christian spin to a culture who hadn’t notions of the judeo-christian persuation?

Next!

“Aztec legend says little about Aztlan”

Ouch! Separation without anesthesia is near criminal, if the aztecs have Aztlan as part of their repertoire then why not try to understand their culture in order to find more clues about it?

Next!

“Little stirs on the mosquito-infested islet nestled in a salt water lagoon on the Pacific coast.

An expected tourism boom to the state has mostly failed to materialize and the islanders still scratch a living from fishing for shrimp and lobsters.” [my bolds, not balls nimcopoop!]

Raid anyone?

Next!

“Try telling that to the growing number of Mexican immigrants in the United States for whom the idea that Aztlan was in Utah or Colorado has become a matter of doctrine”

Ok, this is the best example of a reporter who fails in every degree to understand its own history, (hope the newshound is american gringo), as far as I know, the Aztlan notion and concept is a purely Xicano-a/Chicano-a affairs of state since most mexicans coming from México to the US have little or no knowledge of Aztlan because of differences of ideological rearing.

Next!

“With this massive wave of immigration from Mexico now, the immigrants are saying, ‘We are returning to Aztlan,’

Read the above.

Next!

“The issue of where the mythical Aztlan is has been thrashed about a lot. They haven’t located it definitively,”

Try my head, you’ll find it in the area formerly occupied by a Judeo-Christian God.

sources: Tijerina and the Courthouse Raid (1969) The Ramparts Press Berkely, Califas; Reuters.

The sad truth is that I might be the only one advocating Aztlán in Tijuana, but like in the movie, if you call them they will come. You think there is resistance to America still in Aztlán? truth be told I haven’t the slightest idea. I suppose that with every generation of Xicanos, Chicanos, (jainas included there too ese!) there is a new rallying cry for something, mine happens to have Tijuana see itself in the mirror a little more deeper. I just come from a cultural war of sorts on the Tijuana blogsphere front and oh boy did I take a beating, on the other hand I got them to think somewhat about their role in society and the labels they attach themselves. I hate the word “fronterizo” which many had started using to call themselves in Tijuana (many Julio? They were only four!) and I inadvertadly unleashed the mother of all blogsphere posts after posts diatribe against me, but I took the volley of rethoric and insults fairly well if I might say so myself. I more or less came out unscathed and left the matter at a stalemate, or, impasse as I said, man, I tell you, it was just little ol’ me there fending off some 7 blogs all against me, snif. There is so much resistance to America that it borders on the xenophobic, specially to us who have the guts to call themselves Xicano, and in Tijuana, the frontline of cultural wars, alas! civil strife is what it is but it only because the gringo there plays no role whatsoever. I supoose that it is here where Xicanismo fed itself, you know, the resistance from our abuelos, our parents to American dominion, in my youth days (when the Bionic man was popular and Wonder Woman made me tingle all over, yeah, that old ese!) when the rallying cry was “assimilation is assasination”. So it is with my fellow citizens in Tijuana. They adamantly refuse to see that they are assimilated into the Xicano culture in more than one way. We. i.e, Xicanos, stopped long ago, I believe, denying our americanness, mostly due to the english language and because many mexican americans got fed up and stood up against these derogatory rumors about being this less or that more, lacking that or being this from those filthy tongues coming from México ideology about the Other.

So yeah, that.

I consider myself a Xicano, with an x mind you.

A Xicano from Tijuana or a Xicano mexicano as I see it in order to disntinguish myself from my brethen on the other side of the border, Californios and all. But in reality am no more than a minority. Not everyone in Tijuana has this vision that Tijuana is a part of Aztlán. It does not matter that Aztlán is only a geographical area in the imagination of Xicanos, though it be a palpable one.

That is why I am utterly surprised at this sudden surge of interest (again?) in the border. I for one haven’t the slightest idea what the border might mean because in Tijuana there are just too many interests and mexican natiolistic jingoism at play to consider the border as nothing more than a political boundary; a divisionary line which has nothing to do with Tijuana nor San Diego for that matter.

The history of Xicanismo begins when he or she reaches the border and it is the darling theme of san diegans and certain minorities from Tijuana. University posers who want a quick shot at stardom as if it were a buck away from your local quickmart. These very same souls that are neither interested nor know nothing of Xicanismo because their prejudice is the greatest divide.

It isn’t necesasary to explain that we are hated because we don’t know how to speak spanish, the proper and correct way as some are quick to remind us. More oft than not we are loathed because we are a race that has its own vocabulary and use the languages that permeate Aztlán to forge a unique identity. We are a race apart and clearly a threat to those ideologies that Washington, Madrid and México promulgate to ostent an identity which has nothing to do with Aztlán (read: Tijuana). So please, do tell, what is the Aztec Emperor doing in Tijuana’s boulevards when Baja California has its own indeginous population? And don’t even go near Jefferson nor Lincoln, what do those bastards have to do with the Californias?

Truth be told these concepts, which no one questions and which permeate the identity of Tijuanenses all over, is swallowed everyday no questions asked. So how are we to ask Tijuana citizens what is it to be a Tijuanense? What does the border mean? This is more than a slap in the face, as our good fellow Manuel says, this is a kick in the balls that runs up deep in the ass.

Am not about to entertain the idea that I might offend someone with these letters, yet these mamadas de Tijuana Tercera Nación is just one more ideology thrusted upon our throats from México City to squash the notions that Tijuanenses (at the very least those ones I know, my Tijuana that I see, saw and will keep seeing) have and who they really are but no one dares speak of, we are more mexican-american than ordinary mexicans.

It is like that directive that came straight from the centralist government more than a score ago. It demanded out of the local city government that they stop registering children with anglo names, so yeah, suddenly we were not that free to choose, or when we are encouraged to spend more pesos than dollars or when we are told that evangelists are a thing of the devil (mind you, in Tijuana when people say 3pm they mean 3pm, not 3:20pm like a good catholic might understand it) or that it be denied that there is a small but growing bilingual minority in Tijuana (even unwanted, when will they put Lalo Alcaraz or Luis Alberto Urrea in the Paseo de la Fama in Tijuana?). In other words, this is more centralism to stamp the cactus and the eagle in our foreheads and nothing more. These are ideological wars that attract people because the money is good. Just imagine, a spaniard is behind all of this! Antonio Navalón Sánchez, a representative of the Prisa group and a member of the spanish consortium Santillana, hmmm, one wonders indeed what these fellows want, conquer Aztlán?

That world renowned artists might attend this exposition and that they come to speak about their vision of the wonders that Tijuana is is another story because truth be told they have her all figured out in very romantic terms. As always the real Tijuanenses shall remain in the dark until all the reflectors, both from the US and México City, are gone. Only then can we begin our daily trek of criss crossing from one side to the other without being hailed as the 8th wonder of the world for being so tolerable to others.

I sincerily hope that this proyect becomes a resounding success, after all there are many Tijuanenses involved here, believe me I hold no deep grudge. I long ago realized that Tijuana has many realities nowadays. Here I only try to iron out that this is repression, like it always has been, and that is the repression of the bilingual Tijuanense, the catholic/protestant Tijuanense and above all, the mexican american Tijuanense. Truth hurts, I know.

*source: http://www.bitacora-tj.com/384/art11.html

I went to the beach in Tijuana. It was crowded on Sunday, it was sizzling hot. So yeah, there are we, strolling, me and my friend. So I tell him, let us go to the fence. It was already corroded, the sea salt did it and the stupid army surplus material which was used to build the fence up is rapidly deteriorating. There were some kids on the other side of the beach the so called, otro lado. The migra came to them because they were having conversations with Mexicans on the other side. They asked for identifications and those were provided. But suddenly one of the migras asked if we had not seen the paletero. The migra wanted a Mexican ice cream and the little crowd that formed to see the agents do their job, with jeers and boos tried to be friends. The paletero came and he bought an ice cream, I could not resist asking if he did not have pesos on him. I do not need to he said. Why not I answered back, we carry dollars with us, right?

So I was there, giving the agent a hard time, those poor souls in those green uniforms, under this heat, seeking out a threat among us, this is Aztlan I told him, as I pointed to the both sides of the land, separated by a corroded fence, he craving for an ice cream and I craving for an anger to be let loose, it was after all, safe therapy.

Recientemente Osito came up con la idea of a diccionario en spanglish. I wholeheartedly think que es viable. Pero one must be careful sobre las variantes de spanglish. There is lo que I call Spanglish and (e)spanglish (otherwise known as border lingo). El spanglish es un phenomenon que se da en Los, (USA); el (e)spanglish in Mexico.

Spanglish, I have said en differentes ocasiones, is more like the cosas we used to say with amigos and the like. La people se impresionaba de our modo de talk, code-switch era la word que abrio el path para toda una culture que poco by little se afirmaba. We, los suit suiters, los cholos y all ese talk of low class chicanos se hizo un badge de honor. It was our lengua and it still is, de hecho, it is so new, that it hasn’t even finished being popular. Hay unos pockets de resistencia here and alla pero son considered como ignorantes and the like. Gone estan los days que la people se ashamed de escuchar how we speakeabamos, de acuse us de raza who didn’t know ni una ni la other lengua. Ese era el argument then, pero se hears aqui and alla still, una small nagging minority.

Mas el spanglish de Los se diferencia markedly con el (e)spanglish del mexican border pueblos like mine, Tijuana, pues en Los el estratum es patently obvio. Hay Xicanos of generations and then there is Xicanos like me who are first generation pero que aprendieron el english right away como un native. Then there are los immigrantes. Xicanos employ muchas veces, code-switch and calo, slang proper to our cultura. Pero como we can’t detach ourselves de nuestros parents we also pick up los tries que hacen nuestros fathers and madres to adapt to la new culture. They speak and add a new variant to the english language. It is from those sectores que el spanglish feeds itself as well, son palabras que ellos use in spanish pero que son words in english. De este array de words other things in the linguistica came to el conociemiento de us. Calque es one of them, por ejemplo, many confuse la libreria as the library when la libreria is a bookshop y el otro is la biblioteca. Words que son usadas por those que no understand el ingles are such como, vacumear, apodar (no, its not to nickname), groseria (no, its not to curse or cuz out and others that I borrowed from our good friend Nelson. There are other more tecnical terms to differenciate estos fenomenos in spanglish pero asi lo vamos a leave por esta time.

El (e)spanglish es un phenomenomen que da in border towns. Son words que nos llegan from Los and there were no traducciones directas to it in spanish, por alguna reason u la other. Asi que la people se apropiate it them y las usan for si. Palabras like troca, brekear, mofle, birria, daime, nickle, cora, vaipin, sueter, zipper, batear, cachear, pichar, and many other that postearee later offer una gama diferente al spanglish. Inclusive there are also incursiones sintacticas del english al spanish already in the spanish populations del border.

So, eso es just un little de lo que nos awaits if we pull off este diccionario para la raza, good luck Osito, and hay mas where this came from ese.

http://www.spainview.com/spanglish.html

http://members.tripod.com/~nelson_g/spanglish.html

Saludos a todos los diseñadores mexicanos, espero poder compartir trucos y tecnicas de diseño con todos.

Curiosly enough I had built high expectations regards these past few days.

I was particularly enthused by the announcement of the Democratic party declaring that the response to President Bush State of the Union address would be retorted in spanish by the Governor of New Mexico Bill Richardson, he is Mexican American I’ll have you know. However, scouring the internet in my local holes I saw nothing regards that, nothing along my alley so I suspect my search will have to be more thourough and that means only one thing: the opposition has been filtered. Reuters did not have anything on it at any any rate, not even la Opinion. So where does one seek? I had to go to the DNC webpage to get the news and translated at that, so here it is, in english sadly enough but ok, I am not willing to surf anymore for the real mccoy right now.

One thing though is good, it seems that George’s untouchable aura is on the wane. As it were his croonies are being revealed for the crooks they are and the old Samuel Johnson adage that patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel proves true once again. Not only is Ariel Sharon in dire straits with the law in Isreal but Tony Blair is once again being questioned by his own constituency for his misleadings. If only the American public were to do the same, wait a minute here, are not the laws of the USA supposed to provide these kind of channels for the citizens to question their leaders, are not American values supposed to be a beacon of democracy throughout the western world? Why is it that Isrealis, Italians and Britons are showing the lead?

Anyways, it was good to read in la Opinion the kind of healthy questioning that is needed in these times. Their editorial 21/1/2004, titled El Mensaje de Bush, says he used recycled ideas! Furthermore they found the whole sham una desilusion! Further furthermore, they say that because of the war in Irak the world is not that safe at all! Ahhhhh, L.A. spanish politics, reminds one of the good old days when Ruben Salazar was around. He then Times reporter and agit voice who acording to L.A. TImes George Ramos was killed in the chaos following the end of an anti-Vietnam War march in East L.A. on August 29 1970 age 42 or when Pedro J. Gonzales, the 1930’s radio discjockey of then LA’s only spanish radio station KMPC, who fell out of grace with the gringada who later framed him. His fell out of grace because he had the balls to decry the ethnic cleansing gringos committed against its own citizens back then.

Patriotism sucked then and it sucks now. Few voices are heard to challenge Bush and his brand of militarism and Isreali style bravado. The problem doesn’t lie in that whether ideologically the left would have liked to have waited and see whether Saddam had weapons or not, but the manner they went about it. These same fools who argue the strict followng of the letter of the law go about every crooked way to distort the very laws they purport to defend and off course, they have to get paid in kind as well. This kind of patriotism is divisive in all manners. The left is militaristic too and I would like to think not as impulsive as the right with its values slogan and righteousness which really ought to be more crookedness than anything else. Bush and his gang are just out for a buck, care only for their own and know how to play the game. The question is whether they will get away with it, were is the law then in these precaurious times?

I wish we had Henry Gonzalez around, the former Democrat from Texas who dared challenge Bush Senior then. In 1993, Flag Day he did the unthinkable.

Jeanne Beach Eigner reported the incident thus:

During the 1988 presidential campaign, when George Bush attacked Micheal Dukakis for vetoing a bill mandating the recital of the Pledge of Allegiance in Massachusetts public schools, the members of the House of Representatives began a tradition of saying the pledge at the beginning of proceedings every day.

Three weeks ago on Flag Day, Rep. Henry Gonzalez, D-Texas, vented his outrage at the practice, reports Roll Call. ‘Nothing is sadder’ he said in a speech on the floor of the House, ‘than to see the herd instinct in taking the Pledge of Allegiance here in the House of Representatives. What is that pledge? That Pledge was not around until just three decades, three and a half, four decades ago … We have taken an oath, an that oath is to the Constitution, not the flag … Here we are, like a good little herd, reminiscent of the Hitlerian period: ‘Sieg Heil, Sieg Heil.’

Where o where art thou now Henry?

Citizens against citizens, a view of the blog world led me to interesting commentary on this as they avalanched Cruz Bustamante on his allegiances to MeCHA. There was a conserted effort to question Bustamantes real intentions to get to power as if becoming governor of California would entail the power to return California back to México. We should of ridiculed them right then and there, laugh our heads off all the way to the ballot boxes just like Arny did.

Ah politics, divide and conquer.

Yet they paralyse us like they always have, they paralyse by demanding our allegiances, the age old trick the gringos have always been playing on us, on the meanwhile they get to hoard the goods because we wanna prove to them how good Americans we are.

It is an insult, as a matter of fact, that politicians and the entertaintment industry coalesce to form a front against us Xicanos.

Nobody is questioning that Arnold has charges pending about sexual misconduct yet Judge Clarence Thomas did’nt even get a chance. Tell me there isn’t a conserted effort on part of the white establishment for color preferences? Where was the hounding of the media? Better yet, where is the hounding of media now? So far the pending charges have been given passing mention that Arny should come clean. And there stops the story.

Most disgusting of all was how the entertaintment industry is aligning itself with politics. Oprah Winphrey’s Empire and Jay Leno all pitched in to help Arny. More on this on today’s LATIMES

This is were Latinos of all walks of life should flex their economic muscle to insure that future entertainers do not abuse of the confidence placed on them to promote their politic agendas, they should be boicotted right here and now. I believe it is time we start taking ourselves more seriously and don’t allow the ideology of the white dominated media and body politic to question our seriousness for the American Project. We also have our own Manifest Destiny. Nobody questioned Arny about his ties to Austria where he got some help, nobody wonders whether his ancestral home, as he surely is fond of, is a detriment to the USA and California thereby. Yet We, the Xicano people and thereby latinos of all walks of life who have a vested intterest in the well bieng of our beloved state get chided for claiming our state as ours. We have historical, lingüistic and blood ties to California. California didn’t get named that because some pilgrim came over and named it thus. Yet Manifest Destiny servile agents from out of state do come and try with all their might to insure that California remains within the ideological principles that have California as it stands, so why should we be embarrased about our ancestral homes and our native ideas? There isn’t shame in that, shame be on those who would want to still puppeteer us instead.

Links that contributed to this post California Recall rant …

Michelle Malkin Before it hit the gig time …