Mexican Immigration and the Future of Race in America

I’m my name is mark schmidt I’m a senior fellow here and I’m going to moderate this discussion i’m going to moderate it as as as lightly as possible i’m a low-impact moderator so i won’t make any profound statements of my own opinion on these on these issues we’re very pleased to have here today Gregory Rodriguez who is the director of our California Fellows Program which is which is almost the the California which is in California and the California dimension of the New America Foundation is in some ways rivals the Washington dimension of it certainly rivals it for effectiveness in kind of getting things enacted into law and or at least introduced in in California he’s also the the one of the Irvine senior fellows himself in the in the California program and for as long as I’ve been here I’ve been hearing about and looking forward to to his book on on Mexican immigration and and an identity in in the United States and and and in California he’s gregory’s written very widely on issues of national identity of social cohesion assimilation race relations immigration ethnicity he’s published in The New York Times The Wall Street Journal The Economist in the Washington Post and he’s a regular op-ed columnist in in the Los Angeles Times which i think is is is one of the more interesting op-ed pages in this in this country he was listed by Esquire magazine as among the best and brightest Americans who will revolutionize the way we think so prepare to be revolutionized and today he’s going he’s going to discuss his uh his new book which is called mongrels bastards orphans and vagabonds Mexican immigration in the future of race in America it’s a really haven’t read all of it yet over at some of it but it’s a fascinating look at the at the ways in which mexican identity has varied over the over the course of history and really goes well beyond the most the current the current debates about about immigration and an identity to get very deep into into these issues instead of a unique perspective will take questions after after he makes a brief introduction to our in 20 minutes or so introduction to is a to the book and we have books available for sale outside and we hope you’ll I would hope you’ll want to want to purchase one thanks again for coming thanks very much everyone for coming appreciate it I think I’m addicted to this actually so I’ll put it away I wrote a book and essentially it’s a history hidden an argument but i’ll tell you the argument and hopefully you’ll read the history later because there are books for sale and the essential what i’ve done is look at what has become the largest immigrant group in american history through a non polemical I’m not taking aside on the issue here I’m trying to understand what is essentially become the largest emitter group in the American history which we can’t talk about without getting involved in a debate whether should they should be here or not or whether the new people should be here or not mexican-american been around for a long time there’s plenty of precedent we know how they were cultivated over time but yet it gets lost and divisive and polarizing debates I start in 15 19 others have debated when mexican-american history started with it 1848 the end of the next american war at that time 75 to a thousand mexicans remained in the territory that was first conquer than territory that within the next annexed and if they stayed a year after the treaty was signed they were allowed they were eligible for the US citizenship and those were the first mexican americans came and then or does it start in 1910 when big vast wave came during the revolution i argued started a 1519 that really that it started with the birth of the Mexican people and that’s where i’m going to start mexico as far as i can tell has a rather pathological ethnic origin myth it’s one that has not served it well and it hasn’t survived fully its ethnic origin myth and that is of its its male progenitor at an ankle test the Conqueror sleeping with his mistress and is his translator don’t yell moreno la malinche and and it’s a it’s a it’s a myth it’s it’s born of tragedy they did it was there cha my theme Cortez who was the first psychically diverse mestizo and then and and and this is something that Mexico still hasn’t grappled with fully that when mexico became an independent nation in the early 19th century it essentially had turned both of those those is iconic figures into bad people they doneall marina became the the that the betrayer she betrayed her indigenous peoples and helping the spaniards conquer an indigenous land and and of course confessed was one of the horrible spanish conquerors who came so mexico in

a sense became what of davie obaasan called orphans they were they were they were they were both detached from both sides of their heritage the Spanish and the indigenous over time Mexico clearly politically Harold at its Indian ancestry but in practice and in social life really revered whiteness as a status symbol and and the light you can you turn on Univision any night of the week and we can see that so Mexico hasn’t really done very well at grappling with its misty side with this mixture its racial and cultural synthesis but dozen others but I I proposed recently in the Los Angeles Times a new subs Genesis myth from Mexico and particularly for mexican-americans and as a way to look at this tragic origins of a conquest into one of possibilities and that is um shade out of the the new cognitive conquest of new spain by about none of the SF castillo and very early on in the book he describes bring cliff theses men reached across from El in 1519 a friendly band of Mayan Indians and Lord knows how they communicated this told them that there were two Christians captive in the neighboring land of you got done now cliff this asked the Mayan chieftain here they were speaking to to send some men to go rescue them matt said no I’m not going to do that though they’ll get killed and under turret Cortez sent his own man he sent him with trinkets to trade for there for the release if they were capped presumably captives and with the letter hidden in one know the Spaniards beards and they got to the first man had only more they are you lad who had been imprisoned since he and another man were shipwrecked in 1511 s with eight years prior and they found him and they found him in a state of as I said he was captive he sought very hard to keep his Spanish pneus he prayed every day and marked a calendar but yet by the eight years but the time the Sanger’s found him he thought it was wednesday but it was really a sunday and he was beginning to slip away from from reality the spanish gave trinkets to his captor and he was released happily he went on he actually became a translator in because he spoke Mayan by that point and helped goat this in some of the early parts of the conquest they went on afterwards for the second man his name was Gonzalo Guerrero and he was living 15 miles away in a very different situation they found him and he was married to a daughter of a Mayan chieftain he was the captain in times of war and he had thoroughly sort of assimilated into tens of that Mayan tribe Spanish fondant with tattoos of an earring and they came to him and said come back with us the civilization and measure the surprise of his would-be liberators he said no I look at me I’m not one of you anymore you wouldn’t accept me the Spaniards would never accept me again and they again they really concerned his hisses would be liberated so it didn’t understand and suddenly the man’s wife is my and why started screaming who are these savages coming here talking the savage language and then finally get rid o just puts his foot down and says precisely why he can’t go back to civilization and he said but look at my children his mayan spanish children but look at my children how beautiful they are look at my children ok we’ll need those song that is the first documentation of the first mestizo mexicans now of course that’s a psychic arena and and and and and and ethnic origins are an ethnic origin myths and national myths are very important here in the United States we’ve elevated thanksgiving to our national myth clearly we know that wasn’t history that Anglo settlers didn’t always sit down and have nice dinners with Indians but as Joseph Campbell said we need these myths because they’re not just history there since their sense of possibilities force in the future a sense of healing the bad things that did happen in history what happened as the Spaniards did further their conquest was they set up once the conquest was over they set up a strict regime of segregation the Spaniards thought of the system that was a bifurcated system that would have to laputa custom repubblica de los españoles and a republican rosy nose and they were not to mix the crown wanted this because clearly the Spanish minority was surrounded by an indigenous majority country and to remain separate is similar to the Delta of Mississippi or any place where African African Americans were majority the white minority hunkered down and tried to remain separate data protection the church had another reason to segregate races and that was to according to them to protect the Indians from bad Spanish influences so Spain kept this rigid order but from the very first moment it began to erode but it took centuries for them to realize that it had eroded the first mis deseos other than the one I the story I just told you we’re largely of products of rape sometimes presumably of attraction sometimes presumably of

love sometimes one night stands of the victor and and those who had been those were lost and the status of that mix child 10 intended not to be they weren’t acknowledged as misty so they were either brought into the Spanish fold the daughter of the son of non-core fest and La Malinche was legitimized he became more thing Cortez became a Spanish aristocrat probably a brown-skinned Spanish aristocrat in the 16th century but other less fortunate and perhaps some products of more illicit secret quick unions if you will were relegated to the indigenous communities and they were half and there were there were bastards and they didn’t belong them and the Indians didn’t treat them terribly well um so by 1530 the word mestizo were synonymous with bastard that this was largely the worst mis-d shows in Colonials men were largely children of illegitimate unions or rather eligible children of illicit unions um over time the Spaniards again still kept to that fiction and this group didn’t fit into the legal system and to the extent that sometimes again I’m trying to explain my title here they became vagabonds on some sense they didn’t belong in the central towns of the Spanish inhabited nor did they belong in indigenous cities and they were sort of essential outcasts and the book’s title refers to interstitial intermediate categories that don’t belong in rigid rachel systems there was a third power in colonial New Spain which wanted actually didn’t want segregation and that was those that of the income and meadows the the gentlemen the conquerors who had been granted large tracts of land by the crown and large numbers of Indians to work that land for them and it was in their best interest for the Indians to be close and on some level that’s what brought the cook that’s what brought the races together was economics was the need for labor was a span and this undermined both the wishes of the crown and the church and one great late scholar Woodrow Bora at Berkeley in smaller of colonial Mexico once wrote that that the mestizo the Mexican mixed next ISA was a product of debt peonage that essentially it was the economic forces that brought people together is otherwise they were to it supposedly to have remained apart over time the fiction of the separation began to erode another scholar of the colonial era wrote about what’s so interesting about studying the mestizo and colonial explain is that they didn’t exist there was nary a record of them there were people who didn’t belong late later on in the later colonial era as the mixing was rapid and couldn’t be controlled we see that the Spanish h and the criollo of the american the mexican-born Spanier spanish elite became very concerned about their own sense of purity their own whiteness and they sort of enacted some some new regime to to try to make sense and control the mixture that was happening and they borrowed a as a term used in the Inquisition in Spain the yetzer they sang the cleanliness of blood that people in Spain had to prove that they didn’t have Muslim or Jewish blood but in the New World it was a racial determinate and the base of a song they meant that you ever elite of Spanish descent you had to prove that you didn’t have indigenous or black blood um the caste system then the cast that system was then sort of not so much implemented as as it was fantasized with all the mixing the Spanish elite again very concerned about its it the mixing going on and the fact that it was getting a little darker itself over time created this fiction of the custom system you’ve seen these paintings perhaps the travelling around the United States and these some of these beautiful it’s a series of paintings sometimes in 1616 parts in which there’s sort of a perverse family portrait you have the race of the father listed the race of the mother listed on the race of the chill trial listed and it was essentially a hierarchical listing on one level and it was a sort of a cautionary tale on the other so you know that the higher you were in that they the more white blood the more Spanish blood you could claim the higher you were in the hierarchy and the clothes the more African or indigenous blood the lower you got so it was clear that it would presumably there were to be teaching people that if they were of mestizo mixed indigenous and Spanish that it would behoove them to marry perhaps a dusty so which was really the product of a Spanish and a mestizo than it would to marry a mulatto but for why American Historians in particularly thought wow this is mexican society so fantastically organized that they had everybody down but it was a fiction it was a fantasy that the society was eroding and mixing underneath all these categories you can look at legal records from 17th century in Mexico and in a court case and one single court case a person could be

described as three different races now as the Spanish language move north this system who wrote it even further and faster the further you got away from the crown and the church authority in the valley of Mexico the further the more you could play with that racial messiness and the people who did go north were not presumably it makes sense we’re not those who had high status and Spanish society they were not the white-skinned they were not the European they were not the Spaniards they tend to be people of misty so normal at the origin you look at the first vaudreuil-dorion so the city of Los Angeles over half had a way of African ancestry so where’s the Bota that the new settlers got to places like San Antonio and Los Angeles race became even a Messier category and we can see the first sentence of the city of Los Angeles but between 1781 and 1789 the number of people who switch their racial categories over that eight-year period is remarkable a certain Jose Venegas 1781 listed himself as you know Indian 1789 he was misty so maybe had a little bit more money he claimed a new racial status and after a while biological racial determinants mateur Minh of one’s racial status became more socially determined than biologically determined now this system as it was a roading and going north then hit another system it had the anglo-american Rachel system which was moving west and essentially was premise thanh the notion of purity and it was premise on the bifurcation between black and white and it never clearly knew what to do with Mexicans and it still doesn’t but before I go on to that I’m arguing on some level that a mestizo mentality emerged in the colonial New Spain and and I referred to historian Charles Gibson label the colonial mestizo a pragmatic opportunist the anthropologist Eric wolf a great American anthropologist university chicago described the colonial mestizo as this the mestizos chances of survival lane either in accumulating cultural furniture nor including to cultural norms but in an ability to change to adapt to improvise the ever-shifting nature of his social condition forced him to move with guile and speed through the hidden passageways of society not to commit himself to any one position or to any one spot and indeed even as these thistles began to be acknowledged as existing they were not of one society they did not have a mestizo neighborhood there was not mestizo guilds they sought the individual mestizo sought to fit into society where they could presumably based on whatever status they had presumably the skin their skin color presumably their gender presumably their parentage that the mestizo itself became that that that person who didn’t belong in a strict system and then therefore try to find his or her place within whatever system existed as the anglo-americans moved west um early on Mexicans were became de facto white according to the census which when they collected figures and not only for that boy in part because to be white men she weren’t black at that point and if I don’t know if it’s changed any but there’s another aspect because of the treaty of whether Lupita that ago in 1848 which again conferred citizenship on those who remain in the territory after one year mix only white people could become citizens united states in the mid 19th century so if mexicans had been eligible were eligible for citizenship then they presumably were white people so there was that legally was a better recognition aspect and then there was a socialist socially they weren’t considered white people I’m image again 1852 19 20 de facto whites in 1930 what you have was an attempt by negative side of California to reclassify Mexicans out of the white category because they were seizing on a law in 1924 that made it illegal for anyone to enter the United States who was not eligible to become a citizen and at that point only white and black people because of an amendment to the Constitution could become citizens of the United States so the effort was to make mex a racial category so people who born in 1930s a like my father in Los Angeles County and says race it says Mexican um the there’s another side story is a similar the city of El Paso which try to turn itself into a spawn health resort which is kind of a fight ah um sought to reclassify Mexicans out of a white category in order to improve its health statistics mexican-american advocates then responded and what this did was it created the first sort of mexican-american advocacy strategy which was some have called the other white

race strategy but in essence if whiteness rights were conferred by the extent to one what is done to which one can claim whiteness you claim lightness the US Postal Service recently honored a famous mexican american civil rights case mendez vs westminster in california early 1950s i believe i might be wrong 1347 thank you i knew i was wrong um and the amendment sources westminster is interesting because the effort was not to the mexican-american advocates were not attempting to say segregation was wrong overall they were attempting to say it just doesn’t apply to us so this strategy had presumably some successes but overall overtime didn’t really work the famous case which you probably know in texas which in which a mexican-american was convicted of murder and the judge the warrior protested the judge of the it was not a jury of his peers and the judge said well mexicans are white and it’s an all-white jury so what’s your problem so every time the strategy needed to change and it did change with the advent of the african-american civil rights movement m and the strategies that were based on Brown versus Board of Education and for a while I’m Mexican Americans were sort of balancing advocates of the group’s we’re balancing this need to to be acknowledged as a distinct minority in order to benefit from from these new solutions without losing their whiteness and it was a sort of it and over and but with the advent of race-based strategy such as affirmative action of the Voting Rights Act there became an incentive then to claim non lightness um so literally within the course of ten years you would have mexican-american advocates go from claiming whiteness to claiming non lightness so we have a system that didn’t know what to do with him and Mexican America QUT’s who understandably tried to game the system on either side to see what was Buzz beneficial I argue this was partly our history um and I have had I wrote this was Christian Science Monitor recently a similar concept and someone wrote me he simply said you that means I won’t repeat the word he called me and I’m not saying this is bad I’m saying this spatial categorization system is absurd and I think it’s kind of cool that people sought to get around it any way they could and they were in abiding by its strict in the restrict imposition of these categories who’s Jim to trying to make best of whatever category they could claim at the time now for the rest for the last 40 years we’ve seen all sorts of shifts in the way Mexican Americans have have looked at themselves racially clearly as a nineteen eighty that hit the census allowed all Hispanics to choose when we know the little fine line right Hispanic can be of any race and that’s and as bill fry the demographer here knows better than anyone that’s been a source of concern to the Census Bureau in nineteen eighty when the first numbers came back some colleagues of mine were in some of these meetings the Census Bureau looked at the mexican-american data from California and essentially saw that about half of mexican-american California claimed white because remember in the census there’s the ethnic question there’s are you hispanic are you not hispanic and then there’s a racial question the discrete categories and the other half said other and this was a concern in nineteen ninety the members remains pretty constant in two thousand happened again and I believe even now after the last census there’s been some talk of getting rid of the other category so as people like Mexican Americans other Latino Americans who put other would be first to pick one of the discrete categories of race now what I argue is that if you have a discrete system of a b c and d a system of discrete categories rather and suddenly millions of people put e none of the above it not only arose the validity the whole system it rose the validity each distinct district category and that’s that’s this is my essential argument in the book and then and this is the this is this is my short version of the book in that mexican americans over have never fit into the American racial system and Willa wrote it and undermine it as I was finishing the book I thought that this is fantastic I didn’t know and I realized that the one of the ascent the one of the most critical testimonies to the house subcommittee that oversees the census was we see Testament was from a man named Carlos Fernandez had never met the dead gentleman is a Berkeley activist father was Mexicans mother was anglo-american and he had study the

history of Mexico considered how Mexico had grappled with his mixture is misty science the challenges of it the benefits of it and and his testimony essentially was critical in leading the US government to allow Americans to choose more than one race on the two thousand senses so that coupled with other Mexican American intellectuals richard rodriguez john phillips santos these are people who have resurrected different have taken what was a nasty word miscegenation who was essentially this notion of race mixture was a nasty nasty idea and have replaced the term with mestizo and misty sigh using the spanish word you can see the word must decide in the los angeles times without a clause defining it anymore and they’re bringing a new sensibility about this change though mexicans aren’t creating in the mixture of america this is happening in America is mixing but they’re hitting that mixture in our city in California the largest the most popular State of the Union the largest immigrant populations in Union the largest mexican origin population in the union two-thirds of inter-ethnic interracial unions involve a Latino partner secondly not only hastening the bringing again this language this history this conceptualization again Mexico hasn’t figured it out but the very least Mexican intellectuals and Mexican American intellectuals have been grappling with this mixture and they bring with it a terminology and a history and a sensibility because overall that the colonial history of Mexico presented a rigid racial system that collided with actual rampant mixture which created a sense of malleability of racing culture and I believe this is survived the colonial period and this is survived and brought in was brought northward as Mexicans come and I believe again over time Mexican immigration will change the way we view race in America before too long and I hope I’m within time and thank you very much thank you thank you very much Gregory I’m going to I’m going to ask the flirt take the well I’ll stand and call on people and you stand in it well about Stan but I want to take kind of ask the first question which is a very East Coast perspective on what I think is what’s the Mexica a little bit that I I went to school with lots of people who were Hispanic and and and and so forth and I it wasn’t until I was about 20 years old that I understood that you know Puerto Rican and Dominican were not the only categories of of Hispanic so I have a very East Coast perspective I think you know the question always in a place like New York for example it is which puts a certain a particular pressure on the racial identity of mostly non mexican latinos is you know can you which is pre brown versus board and so forth is can you build a black latino political alliance for power and then Africa there’s an African Americans have a certain stake in that in the racial identity because it it allows you to build that because of the belief that allows you to build that coalition and you know kind of brings up the you know the classic line one hears is our Latinos going to be more like like white ethnics are they going to be more like African Americans and I wonder if you can just put clip the lens of identity that you the history grill and put it on that political question either in LA or annoy your political question and and say that essentially and I didn’t say this and I should have said this in the talk after choosing either side of the racial divide I think there’s a point right now or Mexican Americans the numbers and the level of cultural confidence in the places in the southwest and the growing political confidence as leading people to believe that they don’t need to play both either side there’s a sense of our own coming into to to our own own selves in a sense them and sort of declaring our brownness declaring that other miss so I think part of this book is again I I don’t think we should we should see Mexican says makes the largest immigrants to the United States see them as Mexicans understand the methadone try to say oh they whine to the box the Mexicans they’re large group is a circus circus be understood on their own terms and not as an analogy and so I’m arguing that Susa to outlive the analogies and were big enough and important enough to be understood in our own terms and within the context of our own history so there yes right by the camera as 20 people complaints I’m a report from economic to know that physical complaints in the US that mexican population do not integrate easily arranged what do you think is going to be the

main challenge for this community to integrate and be assimilated by these cultures and what do you think the government’s can do in Mexico us to help them to integrate and I elected also you can answer in spanish a valid even english for the audience maybe you can do afterwards elapsed catchword um my two things messing government can’t do much about that but after that first he said the Fox did a great thing I think been about a month before he took office and hear the speech in Los Angeles the next American legal defense and education fund and the first time he sort of acknowledged again in the u.s acknowledge mexican-americans acknowledge my kids migrants for the longest time we’re just simply emblems of how mismanaged Mexico was and how poorly essentially they did when you have millions of people leaving your country it’s not a great vote of confidence and Mexico has never treated mexican-americans all terribly that well we were both shows we were watered down mexicans who sold our souls sold our culture for money and we were symbols of betrayal if you will um what beast was Fox did it he began to do it when he was running for office is to talk about migrants as heroes as and then when he came to Los Angeles that time he talked he actually said we don’t want we want Mexicans to dream the American Dream those who remain here and they love to become good Americans but not to forget us and send us money once in a while and that’s a step up on one level from the Mexican government to acknowledge that secondly the history of messy enculturation is is pretty um it’s pretty well documented it’s not hurt a lot Mexican Americans have managed not to turn I mean pilot / a problem with assimilation has become a bad word because in a part we misunderstand we can misunderstand it as a pure linear process of loss and ethical iteration and it’s never really been that it’s always been a little bit more complicated than that it’s always been right i mean i got i was in chicago last night and some gentleman actually said what previous immigrants came they stopped speaking their language as soon as they got here and I said they did so some of its fantasy some of its the fact some of it is sort of the multicultural era got to believe that any multi-cultural innocence emphasizing the continuity among a family so in a sense it means that the grandchild of a japanese-american is closer to his grandmother and culture than he is to his 10-year old Polish American playmate next door to some sense we’re living in that sort of fantasy now culture is a little bit more complicated and nuanced than changing than that but multicultural has a sense for all its benefits and we can get us out later has led us to believe in fact as if talk about culture as if it were the way we talked about race that it was somehow unchangeable and permanent it was set in stone number one are you feeling to undocumented rinse or legal immigrants when you say acceptance and over time I prefer to everybody I also refers to using the future homes about four million million units is going to be to be from maybe I’m not terribly helpful about that that’s another subject entirely tries to answer the question but next question yes I’m a on the island and please stay and please identify yourself and also please make sure you actually ask a question rather young speech I’m originally from Pakistan and what’s interesting for me is comparing the immigration from South Asia to the Gulf states where identity is assumed and in both cases that they’re not going to do that i dint either not going to assimilate their economic migrants and they’re going to go back and in the case of the while majority of the population on my erotic course but were willing is so and wondering how that would relate to potentially I could guest worker program or something like that would that be a model which means I don’t you I’m more concerned with integration but let me ask you to meet let me get to that what you just said um that was essentially the problem that Mexicans had for some longer time which was the the mini Mexican came with the idea of living here for a short time making money and going back over time many didn’t go back and so what happened was Mexicans have historically had the lowest naturalization rates of any immigrant group but the second Lois’s Canadians so it’s leads one to believe that it’s about proximity to the nation oh man and it’s about the idea that one can go back and what happened over time that those who didn’t go back so I will be tire how retired home Wow I’ll go back to Mexico and they didn’t and what that did it was bad for it was bad for the immigrants themselves i’m talking about legal immigrants at this point it was bad for the immigrant community itself it was bad for the body politic as a whole these people were not participating they were not they were not made they were sort of putting down a route they were having children who

were American but they weren’t Americanizing in the civic sense um positive 187 really changed that in LA cañada California the entire legal invalid initiative and what it did was create this we all know the story this enormous backlash in which lead it led to the largest the biggest naturalization rush the natural lace in the history united states which was spearheaded by mexicans in the mid-1990s and it changed this whole culture of being on the fence and then tonight of 187 I went to the most Mexican I think the most mexican place in Los Angeles hydrogen park on the corner of Florence and Pacific bola the guy who peed Oh restaurant 24 hours and people were crying it was like a kick in the stomach but there was a sense like God is better than his year with Pete Wilson it beats my little pueblo de michoacan and that pushed people OFF the fence to naturalize to register to vote and it increased civic integration over time but when the failure over time previously of mexicans to integrate because they thought they might go back actually burden the children and I argued that they made them accidental Americans but your parents didn’t prepare you for your your national identity and say you’re American then the children have the second generation have the entire burden there are Americans and they had to deal with it themselves and it wasn’t really fair so with the good news about people demanding to be citizens I think that’s good news I hope they do become citizens um is that it’s preparing and changing the Civic culture of Mexican immigrants this notion that you can come and pretend that usually come for a short time wasn’t good for anybody and it actually led to greater exploitation of them it led them not to create unions why you’re going to go back right it led to this great sense of impermanence which only let allow their employers to exploit them more yes you oh I know you as I recognize your face or the children and again you know certain age and so I I just want one hear more about where you want it back no i mean and i don’t think i got anything you don’t know i think in places like california what’s happening is that you’re identifying it but the media is not identifying it and the political infrastructure is not identifying it you said I mean this mixture doesn’t end up on the page of the New York Times because of Latinos of Latinos Latino I mean a great correction of the New York Times last year it was an article on Schwarzenegger and via the Gaza and they call them both immigrants and then the Google correction was mr. viewer/ghost i was born in united states so this the nuances are not shown the latino city council president of the city of Los Angeles Eric Garcetti is Mexican Italian Jewish but these the disease so we have to catch up in a sense I all I can say is is you know it but the media doesn’t know it because and and and to sure except some people are threatened by this we know that that people who were picked more than one raised you know where we I’m for several purposes of Civil Rights monitoring we’re off and reclassified into one of the races right and we’re going to see I think we’re going to go through a decade or two of fighting over what you to find this mixture and whether we’re willing to really acknowledge it because it seems to be threatening you know where they are it’s easily threatened some vested interest to talk about mr. Osborn thank you I couldn’t die I thought you’re going to let me off on then yes Bob Rosenblatt freelance writer there are lots of stories written about rudy giuliani but I haven’t seen one which says that he would become and collected the first there was one article about MSNBC had whether he was wide enough to be President just that and I’ve talked to some good lunch buddies of mine her Italian and none of them think Giuliani being Italian doesn’t seem to mean anything to them do you think let’s say in 50 years of somebody named Rodriguez is writing a president will black be

perceived as they would be significant or adjusted care to three generations every great American here’s the problem we’re about Bill Richardson right yeah you know heap you already got one running confront here’s the problem most my most migrations I have beginning middles and ends and there’s a point at which you can talk about Norwegian Americans now doing a preponderance of him we’re now new us born and speaking more English than Norwegian with Mexicans it’s a continuous migration and so any given time in a Mexican American population there are people living at varying distances from the midwicket experiences and varying levels of acculturation and what this does it makes mexican-american acculturation it still happens but it isn’t often acknowledged and it complicates our acculturation because suddenly we are surrounded and we living next door we’re working with somebody from the homeland and what that does often is that and it increases the sense of our own foreignness we could be here Mike you know it happens all the time it’s fine I’m a suburban American boy and I’m again I get that are you an immigrant you need to come illegal so are we have a sort of a permanent sets of foreigners that immigrants sort of created so because people you know allow for distinctions I don’t know what and again this is the use of the term Latino which has its purposes but sometimes it obliterates important distinctions usually I and um you know California voters eighty eighty percent of the more of mexican origin don’t give a damn that mel martinez quit the rnc he’s cuban american florida but the edge of the only time don’t know that you should i mean i mean so so we had to disaggregate to make sense of this population otherwise it’s just it’s just it’s really highly misunderstood because of that so so I’m saying that the constant replenishment of the new immigrants complicates mexican-american I it doesn’t keep us from a culture in overtime but it often keeps people from accepting us as Americans yes you made a comment earlier that his navel you are George keys he made a comment earlier that something about identity was formed by perhaps proximity to the border and it’s on how the Canadians and Mexicans and shared some ambivalence or the unwillingness to outlines okay what would you say about Mexicans in relationship Central American immigrants do they have the same cultural baggage of the mosquito identity the relation to a Creole society are they bringing that same psychological makeup or B would you look at them as a different population you know I I couldn’t really tell you because I wrote about Mexicans there are two thirds of all at e knows they’re almost ninety percent of Monte nose in California I presumably they do have some of that but the Mexican populate remember the Central American population really began heavily migrate in the 80s the distinct part of the Mexican immigration is that it’s not only were the first mexican americans not migrants but the microphone that’s been it’s a recent big arrival and it’s been as well as an old immigrant group as well so um essential Americans don’t quite have the same roots in in in the United States as Mexicans do there’s not exactly the precedent to look to them over time we do know that they set up an established infrastructure very quickly Salvadoran Americans in Los Angeles but they sabes their own infrastructure and they really resent it when you assume that they’re Mexican if you take nothing else from this job Mike Alverez yeah hey that would be new america foundation president I hope this isn’t a dumb question but what if you talk a little bit about whether and I suppose you could always be mostly covering with california perspective try to the folks you’re talking about how about kind of a dual identity same quite like for example I morning which is kind of which is stronger or are they making both like an identity to give our country like Mexico and at the same time this kind of general sense of being poor Hispanic one reason acid is i’m also curious you know years ago when i get employment law in los angeles near huntington park for example the activists if i use if i ever use the word made a mistake using were hispanic they jump down my throat you know then they consider that almost derogatory it’s a burgeoning out work latino you know but that’s an angle construct you know this idea of expand they’re all generic and itself they’re both generators you know or you know so I’m just wondering you know what how does that sort out any state both in terms of the identity and the terminology between the terminology I don’t get your intensity in the general category okay the terminology I could care less about I mean it’s I might you know if you’re

in Florida sex panic if you’re in two people still say Mexican American Texas here expand again Latino in Texas and Latinos preferred in California so I don’t take it as a big giant issue is the word Chicano gone let me answer that question concern but tell us your question there’s no fixed identity again at any given time of this group of millions of people there’s people different people living at varying distances from the immigrant experience and varying levels of acculturation it’s not it’s complicated but it’s not rocket science if you’re born here you probably call yourself an American because it’s particularly if you’ve ever parents ever took you back to the ranch oh and the toilet don’t flush okay there’s plenty of those stories particularly if you go back to Mexico there is this jarring experience I hey and I’m American but it depends if you’ve been here for three days you’re not going to see you call yourself an American if you’re undocumented occupiers it depends on you can understand n t again it’s so fluid and time does matter and if you’re a third-generation next can American like I can’t imagine you’re not sophisticated enough to know that Mexicans your ethnic identity and Americans your civic identity it’s not that different than other hyphenated American groups but if you’re an immigrant it depends you can see households after night in a lot of reporting after 187 and after the big Russian naturalization those households of mexicans who had once been undocumented they were legalized with Erica and 86 those household they were like salads there were Americans that it changed the civic culture of the household right I mean I was the friends who you know that you go to their houses and their that Dad had American flag that was given to Allah naturalizations Dhoni so again it depends on the level of the level of acculturation overdone but there’s not one and that’s again this notion that we’re looking for the Latino we’re looking for the cloth sum up this really widely heterogeneous population I mean people who’ve been here yesterday 30 years to five generations it’s hard to say it’s all variable yes all right obviously David earlier you commented on that mexican american should be recognized absurd American right now that they should be recognized that they’re increasingly recognizing themselves is not having a fit at the wire given that and that I’m you know that that the Mexican American identity points to the absurdity of racial classification but how do you think rattling that this recognition of the Mexican American identity outside of the racial classification of America how is this is an impact playing racial relations in the u.s. given that it’s become so tense and like all the entitlements resentment it’s going on particularly within well the one example I gave you was the critical testimony to get the government to allow more than one race what’s from a man with a mexican-american we know that the one single the case in California that led to the the you of this California Supreme Court to throw a being unconstitutional the anti dissemination law was brought by Andrea Pettis a mexican-american woman who sought to marry her african-american boyfriend um these are those are two very big examples historically of we’re seeing them Mexican American politicians try their damndest to sort of play both sides from our mayor and the speaker the California Assembly I think we’re seeing I think those are good examples so if you need more maybe I can I just mean like in terms of I think like african-american for people that always sort of had an affinity towards Latinos in terms of being able to organize or to feel like that they’re advocating on the same sort of minority platform and I think the further away that like Mexicans are Latino go away from identifying their minority status with that about right well where most mexicans are in the country they’re not minorities anymore and that’s really the shift and the question is we talk we are in our minds eye why do you see black latino that’s always a favorite cause of the New York Times blacks and Latinos period they’re like the Olive able to get together and there’s 50 50 of these 50 of those and they live in the same everybody but in the LA County they write that story over and over to LA County it’s fifty percent Latino and it’s nine percent but so they’re not going to have similar there will be times when they’re alive and there’s will be times it or not but let’s look at the numbers is it is it to

the advantage of Mexican American politicians as they go up the ladder to say we are minorities and we want to be a minority interest didn’t want to be minority interest at all they want to be majoritarian the mayor of cut-up of mayor of Los Angeles who wants to be the governor doesn’t want to be the Latino mayor there’s that now Latino is in this sense is a glass ceiling for him right he went into the LA Times and said to the others can you stop saying Latino every time you mentioned my name he wants to now it’s the trying to be treated as an American politician so this is the beginning of a majoritarian this is I wrote about ten years ago but a majoritarian sensibility in politics and you talk to these guys of the California that you can to speaker the California Assembly of information jealous a former lieutenant governor the City Council President Los Angeles they’re not talking like they don’t have the sort of oppositional circa 1960s politics they have very trying to mainstream frankly so that that may complicate but again african american politicians in california are thinking about mainstreaming as well because as as you see the black population having fewer and fewer concentrations which will elect they’re realizing they better run and non black is that that may be the future of black politics in the West that goes a little bit to my original question of course is a very punitive damages I’m going to television because it’s a big movie you know in New York you create majority fernando ferrer runs as the Latino politician with the black Alliance and maybe work maybe doesn’t yes sir you’ve met Greg board head afl-cio if you mentioned the role of the Catholic Church in New Mexico and could you comment on the role of the Catholic Church in California and assimilation process there’s something going on with evangelical movement out of the church to more partisan than Jellico by Hispanic population you know I I don’t I don’t know much about the role that the Catholic Church plays and acculturation I don’t I don’t imagine it’s the same it had been for other immigrant Catholics i don’t i don’t know i don’t think the capture I mean I think kappa cherry that’s English language classes and naturalization classes but it’s on that sort of prosaic programs level but I’m not sure you know Cardinal Mahony and Los Angeles is very Pro immigrant rights and marches with but that’s immigrant right that’s not integration and I’m not so sure that the Catholic Church has been a played a leading role in getting people to integrate to tell you the honest truth I think that I think that in fact any I I wrote a column seven years ago saying the Catholic Church is really kind of there in downsizing mode now I mean we have we have something like three million more Catholic school age children in Los Angeles County and something like 20 fewer Catholic elementary schools so the Catholic Church is actually really falling behind and its ability in a dedication to education is a prime way of integrating the culture ating people they’re really not doing a terribly good job on that on that point when I was growing up in L am 70 years ago the Cardinal McIntyre favor go mike go mike the Catholic Church made sure these st monica’s in Santa Monica make sure that the Mexicans didn’t get their church they wouldn’t they went in the school Edith and I was to some degree interested whether you had anything in the experience of that sort that is complete segregation of the mexican population in a catholic community I can’t speak to UM the segregation of Mexicans is a tricky subject because it seems that we know the dis amazing economists from 1930’s Paul Taylor a kind of Berkeley did ethnographies of Mexicans throughout the United States and imperial valley in South Chicago with Bethlehem Pennsylvania and they had different experiences in each place and and even when it is great classic on West County Texas even from one County to the next Mexicans weren’t segregated on the same level in one County or one town to daily where the great books on his the x dot Iman Tejano at Berkeley now the Anglos and Mexicans in the making of Texas he breaks it down two different counties and the economies in those counties and and Mexicans were treated better and some you go to Laredo Texas which is one of my favorite places so it’s a really screwed-up place i love in the majority his bags in 1751 they’ll tell you that we were never treated as bad as they were down in the Rio Grande Valley because we had an elite here who could protect us and they wouldn’t go down they would go down past you play you know uh of McAllen and there was no

Mexicans and dog or dogs loud that didn’t happen to the next 10 min Loretta because there was an elite so it’s a tricky subject Mexicans were often treated it depends on you know sometimes when you have more people you get more angles IAM orphan at the same time you may feel more protected yourself particularly if it’s a multi class structure we need have an elite or a middle class to protect you so it’s it’s tricky that’s it yes in fact and this this will be the last question barbican about 10 it seems to me I love listening to talk about that way you won you okay bernie’s coasters washington DC the battle hasn’t started absolutely can you give me some tips on how we can start of cheeses which battle is that yeah um I don’t know I mean I I mean I I’m trying to do my bit and it’s hard you know I i try to disaggregate you know wrote a book out mexicans and yet first question I get is about party you know and you know it’s hard you know I me this is the biggest imager grew the street that’s disaggregate let’s talk about let’s let’s logically talk that acculturation exists in America and you know even government census some the former to find out since their California just couple years ago completely redid its projections because again they were speaking of culture as a constant so they did there was an early baby boom in the early 90s right it was essentially sort of pent-up immigrants have been illegal were documented 86 and they were having lots of babies in the early nineties so the Department of Finance and olives wisdom projected that Mexicans would have all these babies are the same amounts over the next 50 years and suddenly they revile you that hey wait a second assimilation happens so one I think just bringing back the notion of acculturation helps um and also I think it would help the tenor of the debate or maybe not I don’t think anything you call my dogs down this point is the notion that integration matters that we can’t just talk about immigration all the time that’s an important subject my subject is in integration and we have to talk about the fact that we’re phone born population nowadays is twelve percent of the total it’s getting close to the highs of eighteen eighteen nineteen hundred fifteen percent and we full of years we talked about cultural pluralism and tolerance and multicultural and that’s all fine and good we know now that you can celebrate Hanukkah and still be an American however now it might be a good time to talk about what we share and it might be a good time to circle around again allowing the fact that you Andy have an ethnicity and be an American we have to talk about what our shared civic culture I guess they passed around here in my city I you know I lauded the citizenship test the notion that we are encouraging immigrants to embrace what it is that made this country what it is is a good thing we have to talk about I think at the very least we can talk about their rui all that we should all be talking on the same page where all should be thinking about what’s best for the future of the United States and sometimes pro or con in this debate it gets the bat that sentiment gets lost that’s not my question you’re not very nice burger if Ken Burns were operating at a California I swear there would be lat he knows in the war the other 10 Hollywood so sensitive to Mexico right but Hollywood is in the middle of Los Angeles and there’s no Mexicans on TV Public Television twice to be 60 they do not by KCET Los Angeles how many mexican air to the Amity how many mexicans the only time so this editorial board but money no you don’t live from its I mean the bleeding is you I let you make your overstatement went off but give me a break Hollywood doesn’t acknowledge because remember they all speak spanish because Univision is going around telling everybody everybody speak Spanish for hundreds of years so the people who are Mexican American don’t have a place to work or to express themselves and get a job because we’re all permanent foreigners so now it’s not that easy Hollywood did a horrible job of integrating Latinos into the main into the screen great Evan Longoria you know to the horrible actress but I love her you know that’s all we got okay and on that note I promised in the future on beyond more of a low-impact moderator and thank you all for coming the spirit music by my book by the way