Rick Sanchez on Anglicizing

anglo A couple weeks ago, while discussing the hotel manager who tried to force his Latino employees to change their names, (to make them easier to pronounce for non-Spanish speaking customers), CNN’s Rick Sanchez weighed in – and what he said shocked many. Dissenting from his fellow Latino colleagues, Sanchez defended the New Mexico hotel owner, Larry Whitten.

In part, Sanchez said:

“My real name is Ricardo Leon Sanchez de Reinaldo. I don’t use it because I want to be respectful of this wonderful country that allowed us as Hispanics to come here, and I think it’s easier if someone’s able to understand me by Anglicizing my name.”

I usually like Rick Sanchez but I thought this statement was incredibly ignorant. Perhaps Rick, as a recent Cuban immigrant, is thankful that he was “allowed…to come” to “this wonderful country”, but what he failed to realize is that not all Latinos are Cuban. Not all Latinos feel the need to pay respect for being “allowed” in because the fact of the matter is, their people were here FIRST – Before the Anglos. The Mexican people in New Mexico and in much of the Southwest are living on their own ancestral land.

If a person chooses to change their name, as Rick Sanchez did, because they feel it gives them a competitive edge, will help them become more successful, or for any reason at all, that is their prerogative, but no one ever, for any reason whatsoever should be forced to change their name.

We live in a country full of diverse people and diverse names and that is something that makes us special. In the list of “Most Common 1,000 Surnames in the United States”, we have:

#18. GARCIA
#19. MARTINEZ
#22. RODRIGUEZ
#29. HERNANDEZ
#32. LOPEZ
#38. GONZALEZ
#42. PEREZ
#52. SANCHEZ
#61. RIVERA
#67. TORRES
#70. RAMIREZ
#89. FLORES
#94. GONZALES
#99. DIAZ

These are just in the top 100. If you go further you continue to get an impressive mix of Latino and Anglo names. Eventually we get:

#229. NGUYEN (Vietnamese)
#281. O’BRIEN (Irish)
#363. COHEN (Jewish)
#459. WONG (Chinese)
#461. PARK (Korean)
#591. PATEL (Indian)
#683. LEBLANC (French)
#687. CHANG (Chinese)
#753. RUSSO (Italian)

My point, this is a nation of immigrants, get used to it. It won’t kill a white person to learn how to say Martín [Mar-teen] instead of Martin.

“The beginning of wisdom is to call things by their right names” ~ Chinese Proverb

Posted on November 12, 2009, in Anglo vs. Latino, Culture, history, news, racism, TV/movie. Bookmark the permalink. 22 Comments.

  1. “Not all Latinos feel the need to pay respect for being “allowed” in because the fact of the matter is, their people were here FIRST – Before the Anglos. The Mexican people in New Mexico and in much of the Southwest are living on their own ancestral land.”

    Wow thanks for harboring disdain for the practicies that have allowed all of our fellow immigrants a chance to prosper in our great country. You are misguided, and the truth is, every culture does this. Thats part of the values of America, e pluribus unum, all races, ethnicities and cultures come together as an AMERICAN one. Out of many, One. Its a shame that instead of embracing an American value you choose to spout unthoughtful indignation.
    Ask thousands of other people out there who for multiple reasons change their names to something easier to pronounce. Like it or not we are an English speaking country. And last names have nothing to do with it anyway. Ever call a customer service line in India and get answered by, “Steve?” I bet that makes you just as mad eh? Do you also know that other cultures give honorary names as signs of acceptance and respect?. I know, HOW DARE THEY!!!!!
    Also, to answer your profoundly ignorant statement that Mexican immigrants are living on their own ancestral land. I bet you cringe at the idea of the Jews having their own land and displacing the Palestinian’s ancestral land. Oh wait, Israel was Jewish land to begin with…. Damn those Palestinians…

    The minute we become a multicultural nation instead of an American nation is the minute we cease to be great. And it has nothing to do with being White. We are great due to our diversity AND our values, which include an American identity. Get over your own prejudice and get used to that.

    • @ MacGregor – “E Pluribus Unum” – (From many, one), does not support Anglicizing, but nice try. This motto originally referred to the many U.S. colonies and states that come together to make one nation. Also, this national motto was suggested by a man named Pierre Eugene du Simitiere. By your logic, he should have Anglicized his name to something like Peter Gene Simmons.

      You say that I don’t support American values but you’ve got that backwards. Since when is intolerance an American value? Just because many immigrants changed their names when they came here generations ago, does not mean they should have or that anyone else has to. Neither side of my family Anglicized their names and they have done just fine.

      Immigrants do not have to mimic Anglos to have a “chance to prosper” in this country. Examples:

      * Ieoh Ming Pei – (Born in China, immigrated to US. Studied here. Designed the East Wing of the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., and the John F. Kennedy Memorial Library in Boston and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. His accomplishments also include updating the Louvre in Paris.

      *Albert Einstein – Needs no introduction. Gee, too bad he didn’t change his name to “Bert Eaton” – then he would have been successful and famous. Oh wait. He was.

      *Hakeem Olajuwon – From Nigeria, and one of the NBA’s greatest centers ever.

      *Martina Navratilova – Born in Czechoslovakia. Became a US Citizen in 1981. Former World #1 women’s tennis player.

      *Subranhmanyan Chandrasekhar – Originally from India. 1983 Nobel Peace laureate for Physics.

      *Rita M. Rodriguez – Born in Cuba. First female hired to teach at the Harvard Business School.

      *Levi Strauss – You probably own some of his pants. He was born in Bavaria.

      *Arnold Schwarzenegger – Born in Austria. World famous body builder, Hollywood movie star, and current Governor of the great state of California.

      * Deepak Chopra – Endocrinologist/Celebrity/Author. Born in India.

      And these are just immigrants. How about those who were born US Citizens with non-Anglo names? Mehmet Oz, Sanjay Gupta, Oscar de la Renta, Selena Gomez (a current Disney channel sweetheart for those too old to know), Oscar de la Hoya, Sachi Koto…

      Oh yeah, and this guy named Barack Obama. He hasn’t done too badly for himself.

      These are just well known people off the top of my head. There are thousands, if not millions of ethnically named people with roots from all over the world living in the U.S. who are living the American dream. Maybe not all are Hollywood movie stars, but they are business owners, home owners, college graduates, and successful people working in every industry imaginable who also contribute and give back to the community.

      You mention Israel and Palestine – that is a whole other can of worms you’re trying to open there. Honestly I don’t have a solid stance on the issue as the history of the region is not clear. You can read 100 articles on the topic of Palestine and Israel and all will claim to tell the truth while all directly disagreeing with one another. This is not a cut and dried issue. All I know is that what the Jews faced during the Holocaust was horrific and beyond words. (I should know since I had family that were put into Nazi concentration camps.) … That being said, this past suffering endured by the Jewish people does not entitle them to enact the same suffering on another people. The Jews, above everyone else, should know better that what they are doing to the Palestinian people is wrong. I don’t care who the land belongs to – the ethnic cleansing and violence in the region is disgusting – even more so that it is being done in the name of God.

      And lastly, your point about customer service representatives in India saying their name is “Steve” when it’s more likely something like “Sadashiva”, I don’t support this practice either. Obviously American companies have forced their employees to do this so that already frustrated callers, (frustrated with the difficult to understand accent, the problem they are dealing with, and/or the fact that the job was outsourced), do not grow even angrier. I understand the reasoning behind it, but it doesn’t mean I agree with the practice. If the employee would like to Anglicize their name while working to make their job easier, that is their prerogative, but it should not be mandatory. If a customer would like to write down the employee’s name for future reference, it takes only a few extra seconds for it to be spelled out if they can not understand. Otherwise, the company also has the option of using “employee numbers” to simplify things.

      As I said in the blog post, it is not going to kill a white person to learn how to spell a non-Anglo name. Almost the entire world can spell our names because they made the effort to learn English. Why should Americans be exempt from learning about other cultures and languages? Are we more special? I don’t think so. This stubbornness to defend the right to be ignorant completely baffles me.

      • Hi Latinaish
        I think I got the right answer to solve the problem with the names and the way I’m proposing will make all of us real Americans.
        Look, let’s all of us get American Indian’s names like Sitting Bull, Red Panther, Yellow Leaf, etc.
        Like in my case, since the mexicans always call me “culero” (cul-ero) which means “asshole” than I will be call “Cool Arrow”
        Don’t you think is good?

        Saludos.

      • The crux of our argument centers around one theme. How we feel about our country. You clearly feel ill will towards america and reject our traditions. The very traditions that have led to our prosperity and ability be the greatest force for good the world has ever known. Let me “attempt” to answer your thoughts which i feel are incredibly unthoughtful and frankly out of touch with our history, as well as the majority of other americans.
        Let me also preface by saying this is not about being “White.” I am a multiracial american, have lived in small and large cities, have studied at private, public and business schools, have worked for small and large companies, and have had the pleasure to be around many different cultures for my entire life.

        Your thoughts on E Pluribus Unum are simply wrong. It meant the same thing back when Pierre suggested it that it does today. But instead of the original colonies of different people, today it refers to the different states with different people coming together under an American identity. I will assume you also reject the melting pot theory. This isnt the salad theory, but the theory that any culture, race, background etc is welcomed to this nation, assimilates and becomes american with hopefully american values. And NO these values are not intolerance. To think that we are an intolerant nation is to display your ignorance and preferred status as victim.

      • “Immigrants do not have to mimic Anglos to have a “chance to prosper” in this country.”

        Never said that. And your premise is incorrect and shows your unthoughtful nature. The practice of adopting an Anglicized name has nothing to do with intolerance or ignorance, but it has all to do with common sense. This wasnt a practice only done generations ago, but currently is and there is nothing wrong with it. My mother never changed her name, she kept “Sook Hee” and thats fine. One of her friends changed her name from something most americans cant pronounce to…. you guessed it, Sooky. What about my Filipino friend who goes by Benn? What about my Korean friend Timothy? Or my other Korean friend Robert? Or my Vietnamese friend Tiffany? Or my Chinese friend Anita? Have they all been discriminated against? Or have they made a conscious choice to give themselves a better chance in our country that rightly accepts and loves all races, ethnicities and relgions? You be the judge.

        I never said people should be forced to change their names, or that i hate people who dont, or that if you dont you cant be successful? So you argument is a straw man. As a business owner the hotel man has to make the decisions for the business.

        Now on to Israel. Should have known you are against them too. There is no “ethnic cleansing” going on there. Israel is a bastion of freedom, tolerance and acceptance, a place you should rightly love. They have millions of non Jewish citizens who are treated just as good as anyone. The only thing being done in the name of God is by the muslims in the region. If you go back and read the attempts at land settlements all the way to 1947 you will see that they were ALL denied by the Arabs in the region, no matter who conciliatory they were. And if you think that the recent Gaza conflict was somehow the fault of Jews in the region, then you my friend have lost all ability to think rationally and objectively.

        I dont like outsourcing jobs either. But the problem with your analysis is that it would cost people jobs. A hotel owner will simply not hire someone who cannot speak english fluently enough, or will not hire someone with a name they cant pronounce.
        Lastly, you show your blatant arrogance and hatred for our values in your last paragraph. Again its not about being White, its about being American and understanding our values. YES WE ARE MORE SPECIAL. We have the greatest economy, strongest military, and have done more to promote freedom, tolerance and democracy than anyone, ever, period. We know and love all other cultures and languages and religions. No one ever said we’re exempt from learning about other cultures, we just ascribe to an American Identity. The same way the Japanese speak Japanese, or Koreans speak Korean. Its not wrong, intolerant or hateful, its simply what has made our country, as large and complex as it is, so great. Sorry you disagree.

  2. I always hated how so many American’s, obviously not all, think that to be mulit-cultural you need a giant melting pot were everything gets put together and comes out at one… American

    Why can’t we have a mosaic or salad if you will. Canada isn’t all perfect either but this is one time when I’m proud to be Canadian. We don’t force people to change names or values and to be Canadian means to embrace your heritage, culture and religion but to live together in one community as neighbours.

    What’s wrong with a little respect… instead of bullying others to share your same beliefs?

    Well said Señora López! I completly agree with you. It was just yesterday I was telling the SO that I thought it was very said that a co-worker from China now went by William… just because he wanted people to be able to pronounce his name. I expressed that I thought more people should be like Yang… and keep their name. They learned how to say “Mandy”, I can practice their name too!

  3. P.S. Yang is another coworker lol… I was so worked up about this topic, I forgot that tid bit of info lol!

  4. I like Rick Sanchez too and is indeed very disapointing.
    When I got married instead of dropping my maiden name I added my husband’s, making my name even larger, (I’m not going to be anonymous anymore) Maria Guadalupe Jaramillo Alvarado de Niel. I always hated Guadalupe, I am not even catholic, so when I became a citizen I had the oportunity of dropping it. Now I am Maria Jaramillo de Niel, just to make my life easier,but american people always call me Mary, Marie, Mary Anne, etc. My response “It is Mari-A”

    • @ Maria – I think your name is really lovely.

      When I married I followed traditional American surname practices (being that I’m Anglo), and dropped my maiden name, replacing it with my husband’s paternal surname, (López). For the children I also followed traditional American surname practices and gave them the same paternal surname, (López)…

      Avoiding the double surname wasn’t to “Anglicize” the children though. It’s just what felt natural to me, (and because my husband and I agreed it’s easier when filling out documents which in the US typically don’t have enough room for 2 surnames.)

      Because of my sons’ unique situation, (being both Latino and Anglo) – I gave them first names that are “bilingual”. In other words, the names can be easily read and said by both English and Spanish speakers, but they are pronounced differently. So if I had a daughter, I would have named her something like “Cecilia”, as opposed to something very Anglo like “Madison” or something very Spanish like, “Paloma”.

  5. @ El Cuty (aka Cool Arrow) – LOL! … Pues, if we are talking about adopting names to fit in with the “native population” as the commentor “MacGregor” suggests we do, this is absolutely the most logical argument.

    I’ve got dibs on the name “White girl with brown heart” ;)

    MacGregor can be “CHA’KWAINA” – which is Hopi for “one who cries”, which is what he’ll be doing when he realizes in a few years that he is outnumbered by minorities ;)

  6. I think, as a white person, that this is somewhat making us look like ignorant asses. I mean really, we can learn. We aren’t stupid. We can learn how to say a name differently than we have in the past. Or *gasp* learn a new name.

    Granted there are some white people who may struggle more than others but we are all teachable.

    That hotel owner is a sad representation of the general “white” American population IMHO. Our names, no matter in what country, are our identity in many ways. No one should be forced to change that.

  7. @ MacGregor – You accuse me of feeling ill will towards our country and you say I reject our traditions. How so? You don’t know me and this blog has only existed a few months so there really is no way for you to make this assessment. It is merely an assumption – and a wrong one at that.

    Last time I checked, part of being an American was the freedom to speak your mind, and I embrace it whole heartedly. I am also proud that the majority of the population had the wisdom to elect Barack Obama. I’m excited with where our country is headed and I’m exceedingly proud of our renewed good relations with other nations.

    In your third comment you say that you “Never said that” immigrants have to mimic Anglos to have a chance to prosper in this country.

    Yet, in your first comment you said:

    “Wow thanks for harboring disdain for the practicies that have allowed all of our fellow immigrants a chance to prosper in our great country.”

    So which is it, MacGregor? These are completely opposite statements. Either you feel that Anglicizing helps immigrants prosper, or you don’t. You can’t switch back and forth depending upon what is convenient for your current argument.

    As for accusing me of playing “victim”, you’re barking up the wrong tree, buddy. I’m Anglo – white as Wonder Bread – It would benefit you to check out the “About” page before commenting next time.

    Regarding, “E Pluribus Unum” – you say I’m wrong. Oh, really? Source:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E_pluribus_unum

    As I said – “E Pluribus Unum” was ORIGINALLY about colonies/states coming together to form one nation — it was NOT about immigrants. That additional meaning was attached at a later date. Get your facts straight before accusing me of ignorance.

    As for the “melting pot” theory – Canada is also a great country, and as another commentor mentioned, there is no pressure to “melt” to be a Canadian. One can be American in a variety of ways, it does not necessitate the forceful changing of a person’s name. I grew up with first and second generation Americans named Carlos, Jorge, Zeshawn, Stéphane, Malka, Nicolai, Sa Rang, Ameka, etc. – they were all just as American as I am while still holding onto their heritage. (Coincidentally or not, all of them were also at the top of the class and went on to be very successful.) … So by keeping their names, tell me how they are hurting themselves or hurting America? They’re NOT. If anything, they’ve contributed more to this country than many Anglos do.

    You ask me if your friends who have chosen to Anglicize their names have been discriminated against. This question is utterly ridiculous. If someone CHOOSES to change their name – that is their right, but that isn’t what we’re discussing. We are discussing individuals who were being FORCED to change their names. THAT is un-American. THAT is akin to slave masters forcing their African slaves to take on their name.

    On Israel and Palestine – I’m just not going to go any further down that road. It’s so completely off track and if the Israelis and Palestinians haven’t found common ground, you and I won’t either.

    Lastly, you say “YES WE ARE MORE SPECIAL.” … I don’t even know what to respond to that. THAT is the “American” attitude I reject.

    ***

    “When men are most sure and arrogant they are commonly most mistaken, giving views to passion without that proper deliberation which alone can secure them from the grossest absurdities.” – David Hume

    • Mrs Lopez:

      Simple. You reject our values and traditions by your support for European ones of Egalitarianism. Much like President Obama you prefer a politically correct society, larger govt, welfare states, equality of results, and multiculturalism in favor of any American Identity.

      “I’m excited with where our country is headed and I’m exceedingly proud of our renewed good relations with other nations.”
      Like who? Sweden? Libya? Venezuela? The PLO? China? Even French President Sarkozy thinks Obama is living in a fantasy land. Heres the deal with changing your name. People historically have done this. If they want to thats fine, if they dont want to thats fine. It only hurts immigrants coming here to not assimilate. The idea is similar to a Korean immigrant coming here and never learning English, they would continually be at a disadvantage. Its as simple as that.
      As far as the hotel owner. Would you rather him not have hired these people to begin with? He is running a private business, and the employees in question were phone operators… Can you not see the hotels desire to have people on the phone who could easily relate to the people calling them? Yes Marteen to Martin doesnt make sense to me either, but we’re arguing the idea and validity of people voluntarily changing their names for their benefit, AND private business having the discretion to ask phone operators to use a name people can say.

      “As for accusing me of playing “victim”, you’re barking up the wrong tree, buddy. I’m Anglo – white as Wonder Bread”
      This shows the bubble of liberal ideas you reside in. White Female Liberals are a HUGE victim group. Liberal White Guilt, and its incessant push for equality of results, is discriminatory and unthoughful to its core. Liberal White Guilt blames everything but themselves and the individuals in play for all the ails that face our country.

      “That additional meaning was attached at a later date”
      Does that invalidate my argument of what it is? No, it makes it even more relevant to today since thats what the definition has grown to become.

      If you dont get why someone is hurting themselves by keeping an unprounceable name, then i dont know how to get the point across to you. Its so clear a child could understand it. Maybe in 50 years if liberal values win out it wont matter. But in todays society of course it does. Just as it hurts you to not be able to speak english.
      By definition, immigrants coming here and NOT assimilating are hurting our country. That is IF you prefer the American identity that i do… But you dont. And thats sad.
      What you dont see is your multiculture aspirations will only weaken our country. As people will simply become more separated as they are in western Europe, with ethnic enclaves and social class lines being drawn everywhere.

      “We are discussing individuals who were being FORCED to change their names. THAT is un-American. THAT is akin to slave masters forcing their African slaves to take on their name.”
      Just making that comparison trivializes slavery and you should be ashamed of it. It also shows your profound lack of understanding of how and why our country is so great. To reject American Exceptionalism is to doom the world, since we are, given all of our many transgressions, the shining city upon a hill, inspite of attitudes such as yours.

      • @ MacGregor – I never said that immigrants who choose to keep their names or choose not to learn English aren’t hurting themselves. I said success is possible without doing so, but it would be naive to say that they won’t face possible challenges.

        My husband has not Anglicized his name, and no doubt that has hurt him when applying to jobs in this economy. When an Anglo business owner see’s a resume with the name “John Smith” at the top, and one with a name he can’t even pronounce, or that looks “foreign”, he may assume the other applicant can’t speak English well or even that they are undocumented.

        But again – the bottom line is that it is a person’s CHOICE. The hotel owner had no right to force people to change their names. This falls under anti-discrimination law – there is nothing to argue here. What he tried to do is not legal.

        http://www.eeoc.gov/facts/qanda.html

        As for me having “liberal white guilt” – wrong again. Why should I feel guilty? I haven’t done anything to hurt anybody – and neither did any of my ancestors, (to my knowledge.) … I have nothing to make amends for. Did you ever stop to think that some people are simply compassionate and empathetic?

        I champion HUMAN rights – no matter what color/race/religion that human happens to be, but thanks for making yet another assumption.

        Your manner of speaking is incredibly condescending. You seem quite fond of insinuating that I’m naive and ignorant. For future reference, you lose total respect from most people you debate when you come across so arrogantly. You made a few good points, but it’s really difficult to see past your superiority complex to acknowledge them.

      • You are correct, my apologies for the condescending tone. I normally take a much more moderate tone with anyone im speaking with or debating. For that i apologize. I just get somewhat offended(which doenst happen often) when people living in this country choose to bash it unjustly. Or wish to unravel the values that have made us such a great country. In my opinion anyhow…

        I spend a lot of time breaking down the sides and listening to/reading the opposing views. I honestly feel opinions, like yours on this topic, are hurtful to our country and more devisive than a business owner asking his telephone operators to use a name easily pronounceable.
        See by your standards, going forward people like Mr Witten and others will not hire certain minorities. It will exclude them from jobs they probably shouldnt be excluded from. For instance, an employer can easily argue a candidate is not qualified if his english is not good enough, and that wont fall under EEO Laws.
        Another point, if your views, which coincide with multicultural leftist views prevail, this country will be indistinguishable going forward and will inevitably become like our weaker European friends, unable to recognize and fight against the evils of the world. Its already underway with Pres Obama.
        Of course i understand our country has problems, but im also a proud and competitive person. Nationalism in not a bad thing you know. Im looking at my desk right now. On it i have 3 mini flags in a holder. To the left, a Scottish Flag, to the right, a Korean Flag, and in the middle is my American Flag. Sounds cheesy but i just happen to love this country, and i want to improve it, not transform it..
        Look forward to future discussion.

  8. @ MacGregor – Apology accepted and I appreciate the change in tone.

    Okay, obviously you are a conservative and I am a liberal and no amount of debating is going to make either of us switch teams. So as long as we know that, there’s no reason to get frustrated or angry. One of the great things about this country is that we can have different points of view and that we are free to express them. Surely you agree with that.

    I think that while healthy debate has its place and is good for providing perspective, it is more productive to find common ground.

    So, here is where I agree with you:

    First, I love this country – maybe it is a different love from yours, but it is an equal love.

    Second, you made an excellent point that if employers like Mr. Whitten are not allowed to enact rules such as name changes for employees with difficult to pronounce names, that in the future they will just avoid the issue altogether by not hiring minorities. I had not thought about that, and it certainly poses a problem.

    Until I’ve thought about it some more, I’m not sure how this is avoidable but regardless of the consequences, I still don’t support the employer having the right to force a name change on their employees.

    In the meantime, I support programs in public schools which encourage learning a second language at a younger age. The purpose of this is two fold. Learning a second language has been shown to correlate with higher all around academic achievement. Our kids will not only do better in school and beyond, but they would be much more competitive in the world market place. Second, I think that learning a second language allows people to be more open minded about other cultures. If the public schools began including second language instruction from a young age, then in a generation or two, I think not only would the United States be more successful, but more compassionate.

    Do you have any objections to this? It seems to me that something like this has appeal to both Conservative/Business minded individuals and Liberal/Humanity minded individuals.

  9. Not to belittle or oversimplify the post and deep comments…..
    But forcing anyone to change their legal name is not very nice.
    But I don’t see what’s wrong with having a “work name” that shows up on the nametag that you can answer to in a work setting. Authors have been writing under commercial names for ever, (and so do dancers, actors, artists and other creative types) and no one seems dismayed by it.

    PS: Mandy, Canada has many chapters of dark discrimination history too, don’t be fooled.

    • @ Pol – I don’t have a problem with people changing their name at work to make it easier for themselves and everyone else, that is certainly their choice to do so. If they prefer to be called by a different name, it’s fine. (Just like someone named Susan may go by “Sue” or Marcus may go by “Mark”.)

      The problem is when it isn’t a choice, but when it is mandatory. That infringes on the individual’s rights. Some people feel very strongly about their name and to me, this would be like an employer forcing employees to dye their brown hair blond. It is a part of you and your identity. If you want to change it, fine. But no one should force you.

  10. I am proud to be a “white female liberal” who has fought for her right to be called Lori (de) Nolasco

    This is the type of debate I like to see, even if it gets heated at times. It is much better than taking the “head in the sand” approach and pretending one does not see the enormous elephant in the room.

    My husband Ramón does not object to being called “Raymond” or “Ray” at work, but at his present job, everyone uses his given Spanish name. My friend Caridad, on the other hand, adamantly refused to be called a nickname at work because this more affectionate name was reserved for family. “Car-ee-dad” is not so difficult to say. They learned eventually.

    My great-uncle felt obligated to Anglicize his Italian surname to find a job in the 1950s. My father was smacked on the hand with a ruler for inadvertently blurting out Italian in class. I have seen the damage that assimilation has done, so it is no wonder that I have taken the liberal, multicultural route.

  11. “Not all Latinos feel the need to pay respect for being “allowed” in because the fact of the matter is, their people were here FIRST – Before the Anglos. The Mexican people in New Mexico and in much of the Southwest are living on their own ancestral land.”

    And tha fact Mexico today is a third world cesspit, makes me thankful the US intervened in Panama and helped it separate from my country of origin.

    All countries today were taken from somebody, and the cultures of today have yielded results, who is efficient, and who isn’t. Hispanic cultures aren’t efficient. If you feel so proud of your heritage please feel free to live in Mexico. I am neither ashamed nor proud of being born in Colombia, but I am American by choice. You aren’t entitled to the name, that mentality its what has made North Central America the cesspit it is today.

    I’m Hispanic by birth, Colombian by blood, but American by choice. And neither my ancestry, heritage, ethnic background or blood are relevant, they mean little for individualistic cultures. The point of being in the US is to be an individual not part of a collective who associates themselves with ancestry or color.

    There is a difference between diversity and multiculturalism. Diversity implies the immigrant uses their background to ensure this great, yet imperfect nation steers clear of the culture you ran from. Multiculturalism implies you want this country to emulate and accept the failed culture you ran from.

    Both will yield friction and discrimination, but the former will be temporary and the Irish immigrants are a clear example. When was the last time you heard somebody call themselves “irish/german/hungarian etc” american. The latter means you wish to be proud of failure and you will teach your kids not to integrate, thus leading to something similar to what happened in France in 2005. That will ensure you replicate the exact same culture and circumstances which led to that country’s failures leading to trouble with the locals, and when that happens there is nobody to blame but those who have chosen not to integrate.

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