"Remember El Alma" First On-site Performance Challenging the Alamo, March 2010

"Remember El Alma," First on-site performance
challenging the Alamo
original poem written by Barbara Renaud Gonzalez

Adapted by Virginia Grise; Produced by Bihl Haus Arts, Kellen McIntyre, Ph.D; Performed at Luminaria!
San Antonio, Hemisfair Plaza, San Antonio, Texas, March 13, 2010; 5 Actresses, 1 Musician
A cast of beautiful women, all ages and colors, from
all over San Antonio
; Foto Credit: Joan Frederick @2010

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Obama is in San Antonio today and this I know

I'm for Obama, but all my girlfriends are for Hillary. As a born and bred Tejana with absolutely no polling experience, I predict that Clinton will take Texas - but not by much.

My beloved state of Texas has a history of racial segregation between whites and blacks, whites and browns - and browns and blacks. I'm from the baby boomer generation, and my peers carry the prejudiced baggage of our parents.
Not all - but many. They will never admit it, but it's there in what they don't say and the murmurs...you don't want to hear those words.

My generation of people in the fifties and forties has led separate lives from Blacks.
At the MLK March we have every year here, billed as the largest in Texas, latinos and whites were maybe 20% of the thousands of black marchers on the city's eastside - now turning browner with immigrants and middle-class blacks leaving for the suburbs. Remember, latinos are easily 60% of the city's population, and I think blacks constitute approximately 7%. You call this togetherness? I call it the Alamo.

Rudy Rosales, Ph.D, a professor of political science at the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) told me months ago that "this country would never elect a black man." Rosales considers himself a progressive, and his wife, Rosa Rosales, is the national director of LULAC, who has substantial ties and much to gain from Hillary's political machine. That's not a bad thing, it's just our history - so far.

I want Obama to win. And this is something that's been bothering me because I've always admired
La Hillary. Why do I want a black man to win over Hillary? Why do I feel more at home with him than the white woman? My first childhood friends were black, is that it? Did the name-calling I endured make me sensitive to what my black girlfriend Freda suffered after desegregation? Even after all the sexual harrassment I've felt from the latinos and white men, and even black men in the past?

As the young people say, it's twisted.

I think Obama has more conciencia, though I fear it will be lost as he's influenced by the powers. I'm an idealist, anyone who stood up to the War publicly in 2002 gives me hope. No one in public office I know from Texas stood up so boldly and challenged the War, not with all the military bases we have.

If Obama wants to win Texas, I have this advice - and it comes from all the arguments I've had with las girlfriends about him.

He needs to include Brown in his Black/White dichotomy. And he needs to say it on the national stage, and especially in the debate next week in Austin, Texas. He needs to say it often, loud - and proud. I suspect he means the blackness in brown, but my people here haven't come to that realization yet. My generation in general doesn't trust black leaders, having been forced to fight for a slice of pecan pie that wasn't very good to begin with. We weren't enslaved, it was worse. They married some of us. Then they enslaved us.

Brown is what we cling to, it's what we remember, it's what defines us, even as the definition of white/black/brown continues its melting inside us.

Maybe that's it, I see Obama as a brown woman because he's mixed like me, and he's emotional, like me. He lets his heart do the talking. He's the feminine, while Hillary is trying to be the

Either way, it's history. And I never dreamed this would happen. Not in the Texas I grew up in. And we're planning pillow fights after the debate next week.

credits: Virgen de Guadalupe Velorio, next door to Obama's speech at the Guadalupe Plaza today


indigenous said...

i really love what you said about Obama being the feminine while Hillary the macha, i think its a sad truth that the most prominent woman in American politics today has shunned her femininity, besides being a possible leader for this country she should also consider herself a bastion of hope for women everywhere, and a woman shunning her "womanness" seems somehow worse than a machista...

Steve Berg said...

Very nice article -- great read.

a man said...

I respect much of what you've written throughout the years.

However, I am not moved by Obama.
I will vote for him and will campaign for him if he makes it.

I can't be moved by a liberal who says the following
"there is not a liberal America and a conservative America --
there is the United States of America. There is not a Black America and a White America and Latino America and Asian America -- there’s the United States of America."
It sounds to me like he's too willing to move to his right...
And I'm sorry.. Americans agree on many "liberal" issues... we don't have to give in..we have to repackage the way we speak, which is a different issue.

I understand the context that he said this is (2004) was political... but add that to many other things..like his shaky stance on school vouchers: "I'll consider them if the research bears out that they help kids." Bullshit.. vouchers are tools of the right..always have been.

and then there's the most offensive thing that he's said about immigrants; "They must learn English" ...Hmm... I've NEVER met an immigrant who DIDN'T want to learn English. To say otherwise is to validate right wing bigotry.

Well, I just disagree that it's a race thing with Obama and Mexican-Americans.

No.. it's a spine thing.

We know what happens to leaders like Obama--- many of us may not have the political vocabulary to say it... but we know it in our hearts....
Simply, to govern as a "centrist" he looks like the kind of guy who will go to his right too easily...

So yes.. I will vote for Obama, if he survives this flap over his pastor... but we left-leaning liberals will have to speak to his better angels when he governs and push him to a rational left... or all of these wonderful kids that have pinned their hopes on Obama will be sorely disappointed if he turns to his right to "compromise".

Hector Bojorquez

jwxt said...

Interesting read, good luck on keeping San Antonio informed.

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