Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Mexicans and Moors and Muslims, Oh My!

Last week, some drunk moron crashed into a southbound vehicle on the corner of Lemon Street and Orangethorpe Avenue in Fullerton and killed Anaheim Angels pitcher Nick Adenhart and two friends. Instead of letting their families mourn in peace, the Know Nothing Nation took this tragedy and used it as a forum to spew hate on Mexicans. Typical sensitive Aztlanista response by yours truly? Not this time. The twisted, forced rationale of Know Nothings came out in full force. Before the blood had even dried in Fullerton, online commentators speculated it was an illegal alien Mexican. When it turned out that Andrew Thomas Gallo was in fact an American citizen, they labeled him an anchor baby. And when it turned out that Gallo was as American as a skinhead, Know Nothings put the blame on his Hispanic ethnicity; the one-drop rule is back in American racist rhetoric. Why? I’ll speak with Brian Levin, director of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at Cal State San Bernardino about the subject and pose an important question: in this day of anonymous comments on blogs, is it ethical to troll in the endless battle against hate?

A much higher (but no less controversial) intellectual argument is comparing Mexican immigration in the States to Muslim immigration in Europe. Professor Anouar Majid of the University of New England has written an amazing book, We are All Moors: Ending Centuries of Crusades against Muslims and Other Minorities (out today), in which he tackles the subject and makes the extraordinary claim that Western racism is the fault of the imperial Spaniards. I didn’t buy it at first, but here I am extolling Majid’s virtues, and you will, as well. I predict We are All Moors will become the Facing West: The Metaphysics of Indian-Hating and Empire-Building for Mexicans.

Also on the show: commentary by Mark Ames of Exiledonline.com—should we boot the South from the Union?—and the Subversive Historian. Radiola fun!

Image above: A Mexican Moor mask.

The details: Professor Majid will speak at Saddleback College this Thursday at 5 p.m. at the school's Business/General Studies Center (BGS), room 356. Free. Go to www.saddleback.edu for more info. I will speak at Thursday at Orange Coast College's main library, 2701 Fairview Road, Costa Mesa, 714-432-5087. 7:30 p.m. $5 donation. In Anaheim, I'll be there Saturday at the Anaheim Public Library Central Branch, 500 W. Broadway, Anaheim, (714) 765-1880. 3 p.m. Free!

Soundtrack for today's show: “Granada” by Javier SolĂ­s, “El Moro Judio” by Jorge Drexler.

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High-falutin', relevant quote of the week: “The Hispanic as Moor”

--Title of Majid’s lecture today at UCLA