Ralph had more to say on the issue I referenced below. The following was copied with minor edits from his MySpace blog.
Many are worried over the use of Latin American flags in marches and of the walk-outs around the Southwest to combat HR 4437. But we must ask ourselves is there not already a backlash against Latinos?
While I understand the use of the Stars and Stripes as a precautionary measure to calm the xenophobic tendencies of Anglos, especially in the wake of a 500,000 march of Latinos that filled the megatropolis core of Los Angeles, has it come to this point in the political tactics of Latinos that we must receive approval from Anglos for everything? We seek to make them understand that we are humans and deserve rights, as in the case of contesting HR 4437, but must we also seek approval from them for the manner in which we demonstrate our anger at their vindictive immigration policies… such as what type of shirts we wear and what we can or can’t wave at a march?
As we get rid of the flags of Latin-American countries, why not be even more cautions and also hold a march in which we only speak English, better yet… how about we ask that all the dark-skinned Latinos stay home during that march so that they see many of “us” look just like them? For the naysayer, I challenge you to realize that the GOP is like 7UP, it does not like Latinos, “never has and never will.”
In fact, Americans, widely known for their “linguistic tolerance” of Spanish do not understand Latino protest language either. Within the Latino community we understand the use of flags is to demonstrate the representation of protesters by national origin. Although paranoid Anglos take every act Latinos do as either anti-American or an act of un-Americanism. In the eyes of Anglo-Saxon America, Latinos will never be “Americans”… this is demonstrated in the widespread fear of Latinos stoked by AM radio and Lou Dobbs on CNN. Many say that flags of Latin American countries will create a “nativist backlash.” Even with out the marches, the high school walk-outs, and the Latino politicians in office, Anglo-American have already created a backlash against Latinos. Not because of the flags at a march or the message of the pro-humane treatment to migrants, but in reality the Anti-Immigrant hysteria created by the GOP, AM radio, and the Minutemen from the DNC to the RNC, from Sen. Fienstien to Tancredo, from the soccer moms to the NASCAR dads, the new anti-immigrant movement is a distraction by America of its own failures.
The truth is that Anglo-America failed to protect its own democracy from the Republican Neocons and Corporatists. This deadly duo dragged the Evangelicals (Abortion Clinic Bombers) and fringe neo-nazi militia men (Minutemen type) voting blocs around by three golden words come election day: “Gods, Gays, and Guns.” These 3 words have allowed the Republican Neocons and Corporatists to plunder the coffers of the United States with a war on the world that has cost the American people plenty in terms of jobs, government services, and international prestige…. instead of blaming themselves for voting Bush & Co. into office TWICE, they do what every generation of Americans have done before them… they blame immigrants!
The issues around the Latino response to HR 4437 and the Anti-immigrant movement need not go the way of the convoluted responses generated by the Latino political elite during Prop-187. We need not prove that Latino immigrants love America, or that they enrich America economically, or even that they are law abiding citizens, the issue here is that for the last three presidential administration: Bush Sr., Clinton, and Bush Jr, Americans have allowed its leaders to embark upon a path of neoliberal corporate exploitation of the U.S. and the world. Policies such as NAFTA, CAFTA, and FTAA have decimated the agricultural-base of Mexico and Central-American, thus creating a push-pull immigration factor for those affected by neoliberal economic policies of Bush/Clinton/Bush through out the Western Hemisphere, forcing them to find refuge within the epicenter of that economic disaster called global capital… the United States of America.
Some may tell Latino youth to stay in school and learn about America and study English before they walk out to protest for the rights of the Undocumented. I scoff at those racists remarks and I challenge everyone Latino, Anglo, Asian, African-American alike to learn about the world of Neoliberal corporate globalization that you allowed to be ushered in on your watch. Look to the actions and teachings of the Zapatistas that clearly define what must be done to combat neoliberalism in la Sexta Declaración de la Selva Lacandona . We need not divisions or attempts to placate the beast, rather we need “a world in which many fit.”
“Para todos todo, y para nosotros nada!”
– Ollinkoatl (words and photo)