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Friday, February 03, 2006

State of the Union

TUNKU VARADARAJAN:

On Tuesday, Antonio Villaraigosa, the Democratic alcalde (or mayor) of Los Angeles, delivered to his city a "Respuesta al Estado de la Nación"--a response in Spanish to President Bush's State of the Union address. This alternative discourse, this act of ethno-political affectation, should lead us all to think upon some questions: What, and where, are the limits to civic Otherness in America?

Why not a gay response? A Teamster response? A vegan response? A gangsta response? More nitty-grittily: Why not a response in Farsi or Korean--languages spoken by people toward whom Mr. Villaraigosa has no fewer mayoral duties than he does toward his Hispanophones? There is, also, a radical question from which there should be no glib escape: If response there must be from the mayor of Los Angeles, why not one in plain old English?

2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Excellent article! Perhaps the best opinion piece I've seen posted in this forum.

Multiculturalism has been a disaster! Immigration should be slowed to a trickle until we have achieved assimulation and integration to the point where our population can proudly once again claim to be simply American without any stinking hypens in front of that declaration to qualify what racial, ethnic or cultural faction they belong to.

2/03/2006 11:33 AM  
Blogger La Ventanita said...

well correct me if I'm wrong but
a) villaraigosa response was on Univision and/or Telemundo, the Hispanic chanels, who cover politics witn on the spot Spanish translations (at least they did for the presidential debates)

b) this was done for the debates just the same

c) I fail to see what the problem is to inform people in their own language, on their own specialized media

Everyone has a right to know. This is not a response based on ethnicity or culture, but mainly on language. When gays develop their own language, then maybe yes there will be a gay response.

2/06/2006 5:53 PM  

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