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When a Tejano star is a rapist

Que bueno que Tejano star Joe Lopez, 56, the former lead singer of Grupo Mazz, and now lead singer of the band Joe Lopez y La Nueva Imagen Mazz, got convicted and sentenced to twenty years for raping his then-13 year-old niece.

I know there are men out there - and some women - who will say that this young girl
deserved it, that she must have seduced him, that she wanted money, that she's pura slut, etc. etc. etc.

Bullshit. No woman deserves getting raped, I know so many who have. One of four women is raped - at some time in our lives.

We get raped by our fathers, brothers, cousins. On a first date in high school, or college. Or by a complete stranger walking home from work or school.

And yes, it almost happened to me in college. I fought my date off, a guy I'd been seeing for about a month and trusted.

Understand something. A woman's desire is healthy and vital. It is
not an invitation to be raped, to be touched in any way without her permission. There are women who do stupid things, like getting drunk at a party, or provocatively flaunting their bodies. These are women who are idiotas but innocent about what men will do to them if they get a chance. They don't deserve to get raped, either.

My father used to warn me not to get in a car with boys. And generally, I didn't. But even at eighteen years old, I couldn't figure out
why. We women don't think about hurting men, while many of them need to hurt us. And if our mothers or fathers don't teach us this lesson, we remain naive about what a man - or men - will do to us if given a chance.

And a thirteen year-old girl, no matter how much cuerpo she has, is especially innocent. It doesn't matter whether she's a virgen or not, she doesn't want to be raped by an uncle.

I don't know if Joe Lopez is a pedophile, though raping such a muchachita is awfully borderline, but I've seen the fun musicians have backstage with women of all ages. These women
don't deserve to be raped either.

I blame
los musicos and the groupies equally. These men believe they're desirable because we women are seduced by their power and money and celebrity. Remember: men run the television stations and newspapers and magazines that profit from treating us as pieces.... Ridiculous. One woman has more power in her heart, hands and mente than any disgusting Joe Lopez.

Claim that power, girlfriends. Don't let Joe Lopez take it from you.

And my
aplauso goes to that young girl who told on her uncle Joe Lopez. No matter what happens next, whether or not he appeals, or what people call you - you did the right thing.

Because he's not the only one out there, just the most famous.

Self-Portrait, after Frida, 1990, oil on canvas, copyright 1990 by Pilar Aguero


Juana Gallo said…
Barbara, tienes razon but overall from hearing comments on the local Tejano stations I don't believe most people think that it was her fault. maybe they were the ones who didn't call. anyway, we need to consider what we are teaching our young men as women are those who are rearing them. there seems to no longer be responsibility tied to having sex and ultimately, babies. how many parents out there give their sons money to date girls? how does that teach them anything except that they are "entitled" to date. how many of us women are openly critical of scantily clad women? yet old women are raped, mentally retarded women are is not about the sex. as a sister to 2 musicians I feel compelled to add that bankers and religious men can and do rape as well. as my mother used to say "todos son iguales" but I still have hope that men will one day understand that every woman is someones mother, sister, daughter and wife.
brownfemipower said…
this is a really great post--and a really great comment, juana. I agree, men in power will rape--and since men are in power generally, generally, men of all shapes sizes and occupations will rape.

I do think it's interesting, tho, to point out that the ones doing the raping here were musicians--i live up in michigan, so we aren't connected to the tejano scene at all--and I always have this image of tex mex and tejano stars as being "good"--clean, polite, etc. I mean, at one of my friend's weddings, the only music she would play is texmex, because there were tons of really religious people there and she didn't want to offend them. So I always associate tejano with upstanding. clearly, that's just not so.
I agree, too, that the little muchacha that got raped must have a huge heart to be so strong and tell on her tio. Good for her, and I hope she stands tall against anybody who would try to denigrate her.


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