September 5, 2008


Republican Convention: I am snow blind

By Rudy Acuña

I have watching the Republican Convention for the past three days. Sometimes that is what you do when you get old — you waste your time. A few acquaintances tell me that I should have an open mind since, according to them, the Republicans have changed and they have a bigger tent these days.

I guess I should have felt at home. Contrasted to the Democratic conventions the delegates were really old. And on top of that they were lousy dancers. It is not that they were white — it was just that they couldn’t dance.

I could see why Palin felt so much at home. The delegates looked more like Alaska that has about 3 percent blacks and 5 percent Latinos than it does the United States. This was hardly the racial profile of California, Texas, Illinois, Ohio or Pennsylvania. I almost got snow blind looking at these upper middle class white folk who hardly know the Mexicans who cut their lawns, clean their houses and cook at the restaurants they frequent.

You see more women at the convention — the sort that have spent most of their lives saying they are for women’s rights while maligning feminists. Just from the visual survey I would estimate than some 5 percent of the delegates were from minorities — and that would be high — although 13 percent say they are from a minority group. The convention has a Native American color guard, a black preacher, and a few smiling Latinos.

But what really got me down was the reaction of a Ms Sanchez from Impacto who said that Sarah Palin spoke for Hispanics. I have read a lot about Mexican Americans and other Latinos. But this Sanchez is hardly known in the community. How would she know if Palin spoke in the interests of Latinos? Did she mention Latinos in her speech? Did she say anything about health care? Did she say anything about immigration? The minimum wage? Transportation? or the number dying in Bush’s wars?

I am not fond of Democrats; they are afraid of their shadows. They resemble the American media that defecates every time the Republicans call them elites or unfair. But with that said I hate the Republicans because they lie, and they lie, and they lie. I have never been a postmodernist — for me there is truth. Epistemology is still part of the vetting process.

But Republicans take a page out of Mein Kampf — the bigger the lie — the more apt people will believe it. We’re winning in Iraq? How did we get there? What has been the price of the war? Why can’t we afford universal medical care? or decent schools for the poor?

Yet Americans feel comfortable with lies — they don’t have to think. They love the illusion that they live in a democracy.

Rodolfo F. Acuña, PhD, Chicana/o Studies Department, California State University at Northridge.

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