language

tijuanaMexico, like the United Estates, is a “nation of immigrants.”

In the 1900s, Tijuana welcomed Jewish refugees fleeing wars, hate and poverty in Europe, Asia and the Mideast.

Tijuana Jews, the story of the extended Artenstein family, has become a POCHO Rosh HaShana (New Year) tradition ever since we noticed rosh-ha-shana rhymed with Tijuana in 2012. [Mas…]

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clintoncastroAt a campaign rally last month, Hillary Clinton announced Julian Castro as her pick for VP.

Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Castro, a rising star in the party, was chosen for his ability to reach white voters.

Castro is fluent in English and very comfortable with white Americans. “Hello,” he said in his first public address as the vice-presidential nominee. “I’m happy to be here with all of you today.” The crowd responded warmly to his introduction in their native language.

“What most people don’t realize is that Julian speaks excellent English. It will give him the ability to communicate with the white vote” said a source close to the nominee. [Mas…]

cucaenglishspanish

immigrationmarch600“Could the president grant deferred removal to every unlawfully present alien in the United States right now?”

That’s how Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts referred to individuals lacking the proper documents to be in the country during a recent hearing on DAPA (Deferred Action for parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents).

“Alien” is the legal term to describe these individuals, but Justice Sonia Sotomayor also referred to them as “undocumented immigrants.” She objected to the phrase “illegal immigrants”, which she considers too harsh. Justice Sonia Sotomayor even explained that “illegal immigrants” associates them with “drug addicts, thieves, and murderers.” [Mas…]

nativeamericanpopulationSamuel W. Bennett’s GET DATA website features charts/graphs and infographics about current events, sports, news, culture, and history. We thought this log-scale graph of the native (in red, of course) and white population in the U.S. was fascinating, sad, and maybe, just maybe, encouraging.

His description:

After disease and war decimated the Native American population from an estimated pre-Columbian 5 million to a low of a few hundred thousand in the late 1800s, the American Native American population has recently approached the pre-Columbian population. The…figure shows that the population of American Native Americans from 1492 to present.

His chart that ranks Tolerance, Racism and Xenophobia in the United States shows we’re lots more tolerant than some other countries, but still have big-ass problems with gays, immigrants and “foreign languages,” not that this is news to us. [Mas…]

salvadorlitvakI’m pretty sure I was the only redhead at the NYU Latino Law Students Association Gala in the spring of 1990. The food was delicious, my date looked stunning, and I was glad I had jumped on the opportunity when I received the LALSA invitation.

My journey to that moment began 25 years earlier. I was born in Santiago, Chile in 1965: a third generation Chilean on my father’s side (whose people came from Odessa), and first generation on my mother’s side, who arrived when she was 12 from Hungary.

We left Chile in 1970 after the election of socialist president Salvador Allende. For Mom, socialism was close enough to the Soviet regime she’d fled in Hungary.

I started kindergarten at P.S. 81 in the Bronx. With a curly mop of flaming red hair and speaking only Spanish, I immediately embarked on a lifelong career of not fitting in. I learned English fast, but I still felt like an outsider. I got into X-Men comics because I identified with the mutants.

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Vero Higareda made this video for a class she’s taking at University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. Like so many others, she has been told that she doesn’t look Mexican.


Yes, you can!

What Being Hispanic Means to Me: A Short Story (video)

by Moctezuma Cortés February 23, 2016 Cultura
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Live from her bedroom, California-native high school senior Allison Reyes explains the heartaches and joys of Being Hispanic. SPOILER: If she had to do it all over again, she wouldn’t change a thing.

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GOP Cuban Cockfight! Cruz vs Rubio – en Español (toon)

by DAN MCCLINTOCK February 16, 2016 Cartoons
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[Dan McClintock is an artist, animator and illustrator.]

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Tell the truth: Texas Rangers killed Mexicans, not ‘Hispanics’ or ‘Latinos’

by Sara Inés Calderón February 8, 2016 Cultura
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It’s OK to say the M word: Mexican. Recent coverage of a new exhibit at a Texas museum — with headlines like “The Texas Rangers Killed Hundreds of Hispanic Americans During the Mexican Revolution” (screen capture above) and “Texas Finally Acknowledges Rangers Killed Hundreds of Latinos,” — is not only historically incorrect but a dangerous […]

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This L.A. pocha wishes she could speak better Spanish (video)

by Moctezuma Cortés December 16, 2015 Cultura
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Los Angeles pocha Natalie Munguia didn’t learn Spanish when she was growing up, and now she feels left out, as she explains in this video for Sociology 244 at Whittier College. FYI, here’s the course description:

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Pocho Ocho top ways to tell if your new neighbors are terrorists

by Comic Saenz December 9, 2015 El Now
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Those new neighbors, you know, those people down the hall or across the street — where do they come from? What’s that crazy moon language? What are they up to? If you see something, say something. Here are the Pocho Ocho Top Ways to Tell If Your New Neighbors Are Terrorists: 8. Since sunset on […]

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Latino Heritage Month Pochismo Profile: Xochitl Cahuenga-Alvarado

by HABLO PICASSO September 17, 2015 Cartoons
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California artist Xochitl Cahuenga-Alvarado (born in 1988 in Fresno) creates mixed media artworks and performances. By investigating language on a meta-level, Cahuenga-Alvarado tries to grasp language. Transformed into art, language becomes an ornament. At that moment, lots of ambiguities and indistinctnesses, which are inherent to the phenomenon, come to the surface. Ooooh, shiny! Her mixed […]

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Happy Rosh HaShanah from the Jews of Tijuana! Happy 5776! (video)

by Comic Saenz September 11, 2015 Cultura
Thumbnail image for Happy Rosh HaShanah from the Jews of Tijuana! Happy 5776!  (video)

Mexico, like the United Estates, is a “nation of immigrants.” In the 1900s, Tijuana welcomed Jewish refugees fleeing wars, hate and poverty in Europe, Asia and the Mideast. Tijuana Jews, the story of the extended Artenstein family, has become a POCHO Rosh HaShanah (New Year) tradition ever since we noticed rosh-ha-shanah rhymes with Tijuana. The […]

[Mas…]

First-generation Felipa was born ‘North of the Border’ (#TBT 1970 video)

by Verdana Bold September 3, 2015 Cultura
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First-generation Texas-born Filipa wants to be teacher, and she gets some early experience when she helps her uncle learn English so he can obtain a driver’s license for a new job. The documentary short Felipa: North of the Border is from 1970 and aired on CBS.

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Latino? Hispanic? Spanish? What’s the difference? (videos)

by Moctezuma Cortés July 17, 2015 Cultura
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Hispanic, Latino and Spanish are often used interchangeably in describing ethnicity. But what’s the right terminology? Feminist, vlogger and “critical thinker” Kat Lazo sets people straight. Nice Venn diagram, too.

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English is my third language; I grew up speaking Spanish and Caló

by WILLIE QUIÑONES June 19, 2015 Cultura
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I was born and raised in El Paso in an area known as The Second Ward because of its political designation in city government. In the greater community, it was most popularly called South El Paso. However, the approximately 25,000 mostly Chicano people who lived there referred to the neighborhood as El Segundo Barrio. It […]

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Latino USA: Favorite Spanglish words and Ilan Stavans (audio)

by Moctezuma Cortés May 13, 2015 Audio
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Like puro pochos, the peeps at Latino USA talk Spanglish. In this episode they talk about their favorite Spanglish vocabulary words and also check in with expert and POCHO amigo Professor Ilan Stavans, who literally wrote the book on Spanglish.

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The Easter Story: Why advertising to Hispanics sucks balls* [Updated]

by BERNADETTE RIVERO April 6, 2015 Cultura
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Technically, the word I should have used above, in the headline, is “Manipulates.” As in, “Safely Manipulate Your Balls When You Celebrate!” That’s what the Federal Drug Administration advises this season, anyway. (Screen capture, above.) But I’m a writer who has spent a lifetime in both advertising and journalism, and I know the value of […]

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Spanglish is no Juan E. Come Lately to California (audio)

by Andalé Mono February 19, 2015 Audio
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When Los Angeles was a still a little pueblo in the northern part of Mexico known as Alta California, Spanglish was born. Public Radio International’s Global Nation explains: …living in the a rancho just north of the pueblo was a young Scottish adventurer named Hugh Reid. In the 1830s he left the old world for […]

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BBC Video: What does it mean to be Mexican-American?

by Moctezuma Cortés February 9, 2015 Cultura
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The BBC sent a reporter to the Southwest to find out what it means to be a Mexican-American. The answer? It’s complicated.

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Accusations, controversy doom first Spanglish grammar conference

by Especial Correspondents December 15, 2014 Cultura
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(PNS reporting from RANCHO CUCAMONGA, CA) Factional fighting among Spanglish speakers, academics, and Raza activists doomed the first Spanglish grammar conference, held here Sunday. “The idea was to create some foundational principles and ground rules for our people’s language,” co-organizer Lourdes Cervantes-Borges of the Professional Organization of [email protected] Oppressed by Society (POCHOS) told PNS. “We […]

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Happy Rosh HaShanah from the Jews of Tijuana (video)

by SOY VEY September 23, 2014 Cultura
Thumbnail image for Happy Rosh HaShanah from the Jews of Tijuana (video)

Tijuana was a welcoming destination for Jewish refugees who fled Europe, Asia and the Mideast looking for a better life. This is one family’s story, and a POCHO Rosh HaShanah (New Year) tradition because shanah sorta rhymes with Tijuana. The Jewish year 5775 begins at sundown Wednesday, September 24; we wish all who celebrate a […]

[Mas…]