Let’s Stop the ‘Hispandering’ by Politicians This Cinco de Mayo
Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Battle of Puebla when the Mexican army defeated the better-equipped French army in 1862. While it isn’t a widely celebrated holiday in Mexico, in the U.S. Cinco de Mayo has grown in popularity in the period after the height of the Chicano movement in the 60s and 70s. For the past thirty years, marketers have latched onto the holiday to promote alcohol, Mexican food products, and pretty much anything that can be marketed to the masses. Cinco de Mayo has also given politicians in the U.S. an opportunity to pander to Mexican American voters.
Today Thursday, Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton will be at an event at East Los Angeles College, which is currently located in Monterey Park, California but was once part of unincorporated East Los Angeles. East Los Angeles is the heart of L.A.’s Chicano community. At the White House, President Obama will host a Cinco de Mayo reception that Vice President Joe Biden will also attend. Mexican pop band Mana is scheduled to perform at the White House celebration this Thursday as well. And throughout the day, politicians across the political spectrum will make statements about Cinco de Mayo and Mexican Americans. Last year the Republican National Committee Chair Reince Priebus used the holiday to praise “the Mexican American men and women and Hispanics of all descents, past and present” who have served in the U.S. military.