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Old 05-22-2012, 07:09 PM
 
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Default Why is the word Mexican offensive to describe neighborhoods or parts of an American city?

When did this come to be? Growing up in LA, it was commonly stated that East LA has a lot of Mexicans. I once stopped in a Central Valley CA town called Delano and its Hispanic population was Mexican - they weren't from Panama or Puerto Rico, that's for sure. Now, we say Hispanic.

However, when describing a neighborhood in Miami, one can safely say, for example, that Hialeah is a Cuban stronghold.

Is it because Cuban implies predominately Spanish ties and Mexican may imply more indigenous? Saying a neighborhood is heavily Mexican may indeed be accurate. This is now even accurate in parts of Atlanta. They even recently released a movie called "The Mexican." What's the deal? Does it bother you? It doesn't bother me, if it's accurate.

Sidebar: Seattle went as far as to name what has historically been its Chinatown the International District. Oh please. Same mindset.

Last edited by robertpolyglot; 05-22-2012 at 08:12 PM..
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Old 05-23-2012, 04:33 AM
 
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It's offensive most likely because there are many bigoted Americans who refer to anyone of Hispanic background as "Mexican" in a derogatory fashion. I would also imagine it's offensive to someone who's not Mexican, rather Guatemalan or Honduran. I don't think it's terribly oversensitive to be defensive of one's nationality and perpetual ignorance of others in regard to realizing that.
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Old 05-24-2012, 01:46 AM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, USA
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Mexicans have a high crime rate and far fewer U.S. citizens want to move to Mexico than the millions of Mexicans who choose to live here. If a neighborhood is referred to as Mexican it is best to avoid it.
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Old 05-24-2012, 04:07 AM
 
Location: New Albany, IN
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Well then you have the people who say "hispanic" is an offensive word! Our descriptions and attitudes about race here are really messed up! That's funny in Seattle, calling it the "International District" instead of Chinatown. Isn't that kind of covering up the culture, kind of making it "shameful" to be referred to as Chinese or Asian rather than proud to tell the world that's the kind of people who live there?

Same thing with the word "Mexican" as a descriptor of a neighborhood. As a previous poster suggested, the only way I can see that being offensive is if the majority of the neighborhood is full of Latin Americans NOT from Mexico. But if the neighborhood is majority Mexican and has a history of being so then it shouldn't be offensive. If the people are Mexican then they shouldn't be ashamed of the label. To some people is that like saying the neighborhood is full of "illegals" because of the word "Mexican?" What are they trying to say, then? And how is "Cuban" any classier than Mexican? Funny how P.C. can be applied to some situations/places/people and not others...
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Old 05-24-2012, 04:58 AM
 
Location: Atlanta & NYC
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Because whenever white Americans see a Hispanic walking down the street, that area is automatically gang infested and filled with "Mexicans," which seems to be the universal term for anyone descending from Hispanic origin.
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Old 05-24-2012, 05:01 AM
 
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Maybe being from Texas makes a difference, but I don't consider the term "Mexican" to be in any way offensive. Is the term "Anglo" also offensive to some people? Not in Texas. Not around anyone I know. There are people that come from other places that bring their prejudices with them...

Last edited by Bideshi; 05-24-2012 at 05:27 AM..
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Old 05-24-2012, 06:19 AM
Status: "Game recognized game from the start" (set 20 days ago)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kyle19125 View Post
It's offensive most likely because there are many bigoted Americans who refer to anyone of Hispanic background as "Mexican" in a derogatory fashion. I would also imagine it's offensive to someone who's not Mexican, rather Guatemalan or Honduran. I don't think it's terribly oversensitive to be defensive of one's nationality and perpetual ignorance of others in regard to realizing that.
^This, as those other two nationalities and others from Latin America have been in the LA area for a while now. So, we can't necessarily assume anymore as to what nationality or ethnicity the Hispanics in the area are. This is the case in most regions in regard to Hispanics.
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Old 05-24-2012, 08:39 AM
 
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If the neighborhood is predominately Mexican/Mexican-American then I don't see how it's offensive, it's just stating a fact. However, something to consider is that outside of established Mexican-American communities in the Southwest, like San Antonio for instance, Mexican neighborhoods are stereotyped as being comprised of recent immigrants with questionable legal status. In any case, Hispanics themselves also attach national labels to communities that have a large representation of one nationality. In Miami, for instance, the city of Doral is "Venezuelan", Sweetwater is "Nicaraguan", Kendall is "Cuban & Colombian", etc. Now if someone who isn't familiar with the differences among Latin Americans called those neighborhoods "Mexican" then that's a problem, lol. Not necessarily "offensive" but just indicative that to that person "Hispanic" is synonymous with Mexican. But in California, the Southwest, Texas (most of the country really) the majority of "Hispanic" neighborhoods are indeed predominantly Mexican.
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Old 05-24-2012, 08:40 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rayah(812) View Post
That's funny in Seattle, calling it the "International District" instead of Chinatown. Isn't that kind of covering up the culture, kind of making it "shameful" to be referred to as Chinese or Asian rather than proud to tell the world that's the kind of people who live there?
If you blink an eye, you'll miss it. It's not international at all. But with SEA's namby-pamby political correctness, it's no surprise. While there are now many ethnic types living in Seattle, they burrow, so there's nothing very international about it, really.
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Old 05-24-2012, 09:57 AM
 
8,962 posts, read 12,983,657 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robertpolyglot View Post
When did this come to be? Growing up in LA, it was commonly stated that East LA has a lot of Mexicans. I once stopped in a Central Valley CA town called Delano and its Hispanic population was Mexican - they weren't from Panama or Puerto Rico, that's for sure. Now, we say Hispanic.

However, when describing a neighborhood in Miami, one can safely say, for example, that Hialeah is a Cuban stronghold.

Is it because Cuban implies predominately Spanish ties and Mexican may imply more indigenous? Saying a neighborhood is heavily Mexican may indeed be accurate. This is now even accurate in parts of Atlanta. They even recently released a movie called "The Mexican." What's the deal? Does it bother you? It doesn't bother me, if it's accurate.

Sidebar: Seattle went as far as to name what has historically been its Chinatown the International District. Oh please. Same mindset.
Because the Mexicans in those neighborhoods are from Mexico. The Cubans in those Miami neighborhoods are from Cuba. To call everyone "Mexican" would imply that their heritage doesn't mean anything.

It would be like going to Europe and traveling through France and Britain and calling everyone there "Germans". They're all white Europeans, but obviously they come from different countries.

Lets go to Boston and call everyone Canadian.
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