Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Oh, yeah, we got racism

Clarín's Margarita García is visiting Mexico. For those of you who haven't run into her blog, Sudaquia, García has mastered the art of analyzing Latin America from its migrants' point of view. Sassy, witty and extremely clever, Colombian journalist García is based in Buenos Aires, so she mostly devotes her posts to Argentineans and la tierra de Soda Stereo y Gardel. However, she has also hit the road and reached out to Chile, Colombia and, now, México lindo y qué racista.
Please read her posts and, moreover, the comments left by their hundreds of loyal readers about Mexico and Mexicans. Many of them are loaded with stereotypes, from the glory of Mayas and Aztecas to the ubiquitous Frida and her pale Diego. But lots of them, too, go beyond and talk about those ugly things we Mexicans love to deny: our rampant racism, our wild gap between el niño del semáforo and Carlos Slim, and our love-hate relationship with el gabacho.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Homesick junkies

"'Los mexicanos no saben emigrar: todos quieren regresar el próximo jueves a ver a su abuelita', le decía Jean-Pierre, y aunque Julio ya llevara veinticuatro años fuera, tenía que aceptar que no, la estancia nunca había tenido la contundencia de una decisión tomada sino el aire incierto de quien avanza sin rumbo fijo y dobla esquinas, del doctotado en Italia al Centro de Estudios Latinoamericanos en La Haya..."

Juan Villoro
El testigo

It's funny. Even though nearly half a million of us flee Mexico every year, we're still defined as homesick junkies. Truth is, we're helpless too. "Mexico lindo y querido, si muero lejos de ti, que digan que estoy dormido y que me traigan aquí". Top that.
Many Mexicans living abroad are always longing to go back home. Dreaming of undoing the journey someday is such an addiction for us that we spend literally hundreds of millions of dollars on it. We build up entire towns in Mexico just hoping for coming back one day. Needless to say, that is just a dream.
Homesickness is not an exclusive Mexican illness, though. Check the answers some 67 LinkedIn users gave to the question Can family be globalized? and you'll find out we're not alone out there, in Planet Nostalgia.
Anyway. Is it true we Mexicans do not know how to emigrate?