Would Mexico Have Been Better Off If the American Southwest Remained Mexico?
Dear Mexican: Just suppose that all of the southwestern United States had remained in Mexican hands. Would the Mexicans have done any better with it than they have with the present confines of Mexico? Reversible Reconquista?
Dear Gabacho: The gran parlour game! If we turn back the clock and changed a couple of thingsif Austin, Houston, and their fellow invading gabachos actually became Mexican citizens respecting the rule of the land instead of merely pretending to become so, if Mexico hadnt suffered the theft of its lands or nearly gone bankrupt spending so much money in battling its ravenous neighbor to the northwould Mexico have been better off? The easy answer is símore land in a country generally means more possibilities for development, and Californias 1849 Gold Rush (truly made the American Southwest the mecca it became for Americans) wouldve happened on Mexican soil, meaning Mexico wouldve been the beneficiary of all those prospecting migrants and subsequent worldwide attention. Not having Texas secede from Mexico wouldve also hastened the demise of Antonio López de Santa Anna: Sure, his embarrassing defeat at the manos of the Texians forced him out of office, but he returned again and again. Santa Annas megalomania, left unchecked, wouldve inspired a true coup instead of many temporary ones. And with no neocolonial ties leftwith no debts to any European powers due to fighting so many wars, with no appropriating of natural resources and lands by American industrialists taking advantage of a weak country, and with the United States itself weaker due to the lack of a Southwest and all of its subsequent treasuresMexico wouldve been in a much-stronger position to enter the Industrial Revolution and emerge a better, reformed land. Of course, its just a parlour game, just like Arizona Senator John McCain blaming illegal Mexicans for starting devastating forest fires with no hard proofexcept ours is responsible and fun, while his is just pendejo.
I know many Mexican names translate to English: Michael is Miguel, Juan is John, and so forth. Mexican names seem rooted in the Bible in general (everyone knows a Mexican named Jesús with a best buddy named Gabriel, right?). My name is Adam, and I don't know what the Mexican version of the name is. I don't think there is one. Every time I order at a restaurant and the cashier is Mexican and they ask my name, I check the receipt and its wrong. They have a hard time pronouncing it, too. I've got receipts back before with Asham, Awarm, Alad, Aman, Aden. Mexicans seem devoutly religious. Do they not read Genesis, or is there a mexicano version of Adam and Eve with different names? Gabacho Y Eva
Dear Gabacho: If you bothered to read the Spanish version of Genesis, youd know Adam is Adán. Next!
GOOD MEXICAN OF THE WEEK: The American Immigration Council (AIC) sounds like a creepy front group for Know Nothings, but its actually the nonprofit arm of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, whose members do the Lords work by helping migrants from across the world enter this great land. The AIC actively fights Know Nothings, honors immigrants year-round, and is publishing Green Card Stories in the fall, a beautiful book featuring the inspiring stories of immigrants who came to los Estados Unidos from across the globe. More information on these mensches at americanimmigrationcouncil.org.
Ask the Mexican at email@example.com, be his fan on Facebook, follow him on Twitter, or ask him a video question at youtube.com/askamexicano!
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