You can’t go home again; ask la Señorita Lopez.
JLo’s waxing poetic about her roots and her neighborhood made for a very nice commercial but a not-so-nice commentary about her beloved Bronx.
Jenny-from-the-block’s part in her new commercial was not shot “round the way” but rather on the rough and tumble streets of West Los Angeles (yeah, I know they both look soooo much alike.)
Adding to the insult was that the driver in the Bronx was a body double so that the former Fly Girl wouldn’t have to step foot into the wilds of her old hood.
Two things come to mind.
- Why would anyone think that JLo has been back “home” in a very long time
- Why would Jenny going back to the “hood” get me to buy a Fiat (Fix It Again Tony)?
Lets face it. George Lopez doesn’t live in the same hood in San Fernando that he used to. Carlos Santana isn’t going back to Tijuana any time soon. Hell, even the boys from Los Lobos left East LA a long time ago!
Isn’t this part of the American Latino dream? Get a job or education (call me crazy for saying that you can get both), get some nikles in your pocket and maybe a little ranfla (my Tio Santos loved that word), and then as soon as you could…get the HELL out (no matter where your “where” was.) So why should JLo be any different?
I think this issue speaks more to an interesting dichotomy (mira que fancy) among Latinos. We are very quick to shower praise on things we see coming from our midst but as soon as those individuals who aspire to greater heights begin to reach a shred of success we label them as sellouts or fakes (“You know what that guy on Last Comic Standing isn’t really that funny and he’s kind of ugly if you ask me.”)
I can find no other group of people living in the United States who can punish one of its own like Latinos (I remember my tia always saying quien se cree all the time…to people on TV no less).
I know that crabs in a bucket is the usual analogy but we’re more like fireant colonies at a picnic (rather than go for the food they will attack each other to see who “wins”…never mind the fact that they may end up wiping each other out).
I know that there are other groups that do Hating almost as well as we do (yes…almost as well) but we seemingly have it down to an art or science.
I know we get erroneously labeled in many ways, but when it comes to Hating it’s in our DNA (its like we have 48 chromosomes while everyone else has 46…yeah, look it up.)
We can’t seem to ever be happy for someone who makes it in whatever field. I mean its not like that person is taking “your spot.” We can have absolutely no expectation of ever mastering the field that any one particular person has found success in yet…we Hate (“Fuck that guy he thinks he’s all that just ’cause he works at JPL…shit I can weld pretty good too!”)
I wouldn’t see Hating as being so bad if it were perhaps based on some notion that this was done in the hopes of inspiring those who succeed not to forget their fellow brethren. As noble as the idea is of helping the greater good, I don’t think we have reached that level. From my perspective, it seems like we enjoy bringing our fellow peeps down almost as much the Roman citizens loved watching the Roman gladiators battle it out to the death (OK a bit Russell Crowe-ish there but you get the picture.) We Hate because we can’t help it.
So what if JLo didn’t film the commercial in the Bronx (were you seriously going to buy a Fiat if it was?)
With 50 million people and counting (one of every four births in this country is a Latino baby), we really need to get used to the fact that we are going to have more and more Latinos trying to get the Hell out (and actually succeed).
As important as I believe that one should remember from where one comes from, we’ve got to LET IT GO. Popular media does a great job of tearing us down. Why are we so quick to help? It may be that some may not WANT to go home and we are going to have to be cool with that.
— The Son of Los Angeles (El Los Angelino)