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mercredi 27 juin 2012

Ashamed of Who you are.. A Texas Tragedy

Maria, a waitress at an elegant function for Doctors at the Hilton Hotel in Houston said: I don't like speaking Spanish. Her English was not all that good either!
I replied: Sorry, I only speak Spanish and I would like you to speak in Spanish to me and added the question, where are you from, Maria?  Saltillo in Mexico but I never go back there.
(things are big in Texas, look at the size of the shrimps)
What a shame! These immigrants who are not well educated (the well-educated Mexicans, most of whom are of Spanish ancestry tend not to migrate. It is the ones who have Indian ancestry and who are poor and destitute, who migrate to the USA, now or before. Then again, much of southern USA was Mexico once upon a time), why are they so eager to negate their history, when it is so obvious that they are Mexican?
It is not the case with Cuban migrants to this country and their children born here in the USA. They would be only too glad to speak Spanish to you. They do not change their names from Flores to Flowers! I consider the Cuban migration to the USA since 1962 to be one of the more successful migrations to the USA since the Jewish migration of the early 1900s/late 1800s. Also most of the Cuban migrants are literate, are professionals to a large degree and quickly become established in USA. Whether Health or Wealth, Cuban migrants to the USA are much better off than the Mexican migrants (high school graduation, teenage pregnancy, obesity, diabetes, percentage under poverty line etc.)
Next day at lunch at Viet resto within walking distance of Hilton Hotel, the waitress was a rather chubby Vietnamese young woman. She may have looked good once upon a time. Her name was Nga.
A beautiful name (a personal connection for another Nga in Vietnam).
It means Ivory in Vietnamese, I informed the waitress.
(chemically grown chicken on this dish, so large and tasteless: bun ga nuong)
I didn't know that, she said. I was absolutely dumbstruck! Here is a Viet Khieu who does not know the meaning of her name? Or does not wish to admit that she knows? She could have easily changed it to Alicia or Daisy. Or something less exotic if she wanted to.
When they are mired in shame, it affects them including their “success” in this society that gives them the freedom to forget who they are.
Jews are proud of who they are and try to pass it on to the next generation. At the meeting I was attending, there were a fair number of Iranians, and I am certain they wouldn't deny their origins (despite the autocratic, narrow minded rulers of their country). I met a Farnoosh, and she proudly told me, it means Splendid…
Splendid Indeed, and I see a good future for the Iranians in the USA: like the Jews, Armenians, and Cubans!
And I shall sing this lament for Mexicans, which the dictator Porfirio Diaz once said:
Oh Poor Mexico, so far away from God and so close to the United States!
(if you eat like Americans, you begin to look like Americans: in the rates of Overweight and Obesity, Australians are not far behind!)