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.