Friday, July 23, 2010
Arizona Gov. Brewer’s Mexican Nightmare in the Future by Alvaro Huerta, Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of City & Regional Planning (UC Berkeley) Visiting Scholar, Chicano Studies Research Center (UCLA) Visiting Lecturer, Dept. of Urban Planning (UCLA)
The year is 2030. Not being able to sleep, former Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer finds herself alone in a strange, white room.
“Where am I?” she asks herself, as she experiences a recurring nightmare about Mexicans, before going back to sleep.
Always looking for a scapegoat for Arizona’s woes, even in her twilight years, Brewer’s dream places the burden of the state’s economic woes on individuals of Mexican decent, instead of the credit crises, housing bubble, banking deregulation policies, Wall Street greed and great recession.
Here’s goes a rough sketch of Brewer’s Mexican nightmare.
It has been over 20 years since she led
Thanks to Brewer, a new term has been added to the American lexicon: Latino flight.
Gone are the Four C’s that have sustained
and mainstream communities alike, such as restaurants, construction companies, bakeries, local markets and clothing stores.
Apart from brown people fleeing this racist state in mass, the numerous lawsuits and national boycotts eventually took a toll on the state’s tourism sector, including retirement communities and long-term care facilities. This includes the loss of out-of-state business and trade with
Consequently, the state government filed for bankruptcy, finding itself at the mercy of the federal government and President Antonio Villaraigosa.
The decline of
Contrary to the official story, where Mexican immigrants labored in the U.S. agricultural industry following WW II to meet labor shortage demands, this program was conceived by rural Mexicans as part of their plan to abandon their families, material possessions and personal dreams for a bigger goal: the browning of American society.
Instead of returning to
Once settled, the rural Mexicans—most of whom lacked formal education—met and organized at parks, churches and baseball games for decades without being detected. They disguised their covert activities during their Quinceñeras, weddings and funerals.
The Mexicans’ master plan against the American way of life consisted of a three-pronged attack: linguistic, demographic and employment.
First, learning from the French in
Also, the Mexican nannies (and house cleaners) all agreed to speak only in Spanish to the American children in their care. Refusing to be paid extra for the Spanish lessons, the domestic workers created a linguistic wedge between the American children and their monolingual parents.
Secondly, the Mexicans unanimously agreed to have a lot of babies. Over time, the Mexican population growth rate in the
Also, the Mexicans, meeting in maternity wards, decided to select the same baby names, such as Jose and Maria, to confuse the Americans. This allowed the Mexicans to easily exchange birth certificates, driver licenses and jobs.
“This is perfect,” one Mexican said at the original meeting. “Not only do we all look alike, we can exchange identities with each other.”
Lastly, the Mexicans initiated a long-term campaign of stealing manual labor jobs from American workers. Not only did the Mexicans take away these dead-end, low status jobs from American citizens, they also insisted on working for low wages without benefits.
“No Mr. Smith,” said Jose at one meeting, “I refuse to work at the federal minimum wage. Please pay me in cash and don’t worry about any of that overtime and health coverage stuff.”
By doing so, the Mexicans created a lazy
Suddenly, Brewer awakes from her nightmare, finding herself in the same strange, white room. This time, however, she finds herself with company.
“Who are you all and where am I?” asks Brewer.
“I’m your doctor,” says the first person. “My name is Dr. Maria Gomez and you’re in a long-term care facility in
“Hello,” says the second person. “My name is Jose Gonzalez and I’m your nurse.”
“Good morning,” says the third person. “My name is Maria Cruz and I will care for all of your hygienic needs.” “I want to go home,” pleads Brewer.
“This is your new home,” says Dr. Gomez. “Your family couldn’t care for you anymore and they brought you here since
“Don’t worry,” Maria say, “In
Without uttering another word, Brewer begins to weep.