Where's the Gratitude?
Why don't Mexicans have enough gratitude for America to learn to speak English? Are they too stupid? Too lazy? What -- they can't learn two or three words a day? Is this asking too much?
Took Four Years of Spanish in High School
The United States government shares your concerns, Took Four Years. Its Dillingham Commission released a 42-volume study on the waves of immigrants that concluded, "The new immigration as a class is far less intelligent than the old...The old immigration came to be a part of the country, while the new, in a large measure, comes with the intention of profiting...and then returning to the old country."
The Dillingham report went on to fault the new immigrants for their lack of assimilation and English skills, constantly contrasting them with earlier generations of immigrants, and urged clampdowns on immigration. Sound familiar? That's because the Dillingham report appeared in 1911, and the inassimilable masses at the time were eastern and northern Europeans.
The Dillingham Commission proves that the time-honored conservative anecdote that earlier generations of immigrants walked off the boats, chopped down their multisyllabic surnames and learned English immediately is bull-pinche-shit. American racism is a carousel -- and here we are again.
Why is the Dirty Sanchez called a Dirty Sanchez and not, say, a Filthy Hobsbawm or a Grimy Kierkegaard? Is it because Mexicans invented it?
I assume you refer to the sexual proclivity whereupon a man sticks a finger up his beloved's butt during intercourse and smears feces on her upper lip, and not the same-named lame band from Northern California, the 1999 film or the 2002 British television show that prudish MTV execs renamed Team Sanchez when it aired in the colonies.
The answer is obvious: Upon completion of the Dirty Sanchez, your ruca sports a mierda mustache, and Americans nowadays associate thick, bushy mustaches with Mexicans. But the Dirty Sanchez is just one of many sex acts named after a locale or ethnicity, in a subgenre of slurs linguists call "ethnicons." These are insults meant to comment on an ethnic group's supposed depravity that become popular shorthand for said characteristic -- for instance, we call vicious people "mongols," "welsher" is synonymous with a swindler, and the hip kids yell "Guatemalan!" whenever their friends do something estpido.
Other famous sexual ethnicons, as listed in the Rotten.com library's "Rolodex of Love" section, include the Cleveland Steamer ("the act of leaving a shit stain on the rib cage of a woman while receiving penile pleasure from friction between the mammaries") and the mysterious Greek ("the act of using your 'glue stick' and gluing your gal's eyes closed with your man seed").
But do Mexicans invoke the Dirty Sanchez during sex as much as they do the name of the Santo Nio de Atocha? No. Although Mexicans are fond of anal, poop porn is the domain of your culture, Soiled Schliemann. Gentle readers: Go to your local porn store and rent a scheizer ("shit" in German) film. The mixture of genitalia and excrement in those movies makes a Dirty Sanchez seem as chaste as an exposed ankle.
Got a spicy question about Mexicans? Ask the Mexican at firstname.lastname@example.org. And those of you who do submit questions: Include a hilarious pseudonym, por favor, or we'll make one up for you!
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Houston Press' biggest stories.