A Week in the Life of Gustavo

"Seems to think that if he fails to write, la migra will find him."--OC Weekly More merriment available at ronmaydon@yahoo.com

domingo, julho 27, 2003

The Night they Drove Old Dixie Down...

What do you do when you're trying to enjoy yourself and then someone wearing the flag of Dixie appears?

Here's what I have done, starting with Incident #1...

Back at my old work at the Family Fun Center (not the miniature golf venue but rather with go-karts), there was once a man walking around with a Confederate flag emblazoned across the front of his shirt. I had the moron kicked out.

Incident No. 2 happened today!

CS and I were about to leave el Centro when I saw him--a 13-year-old Mexican kid dressed like a rebel and wearing a jacket with the Stars and Bars on the back. Not wanting to start a scene, I told a friend about it--and he started a scene. He went up and asked the kid if he knew what it meant. "Of course I do," he snapped. "It means I'm a rebel."

Soon, I open my big mouth. "So you support the enslavement of African-Americans?" I replied.

Now his cousin jumps in. "Yea, and what of it?" he threatens.

At this point, tempers flare and I'm sure I was one insightful comment from inciting a riot. It was at a punk show, if I haven't mentioned this already.

CS steps in, calms everyone down but then the guy starts berating her. Half an hour later, CS and I leave, visibly shaken. I myself wanted to vomit.

How is it that a dark-skinned kid can be wearing a jacket with the Confederate flag and not know its meaning? Are we so fucked-up a country that 13-year-olds no longer know history (don't answer that, Petty Bourgeois). What's most shocking is that it seems no one had ever challenged him on this except me, either because they were afraid of telling him anything, or--more likely--no one knew what the fuck the loaded message that damn flag has.

Funniest of all, I never confront people about anything, much less strangers. Yet something about the Confederate flag brings out the PC beast in me. I'm not opposed to wearing hate symbols--hell, I once wrote an article defending the use and sale of the Iron Cross. But at least the Iron Cross had a previous meaning before its meaning was warped by the Nazis, much like the swatzika. The Confederate flag, however, is nothing but a champion of Dixie. Fuck Steven Greenhut and all who praise the Confederacy for its championing of states' rights. The only right the South cared about in seceeding from the United States was to own another human being based on the color of their skin. There will never be anything noble about that in my mind.

The rest of the evening was wonderful. Had dinner at Ferdussi, Taste of Persia with CS and her parents. I think they enjoy my company--the mom really enjoys my restaurant recommendations.

And now, articles!

Remind me why I hate religious zealots.

I don't hate organized religion at all, but I despise proselytizing. That's one of the reasons why I've always admired Judaism--they don't advertise their salvation as being open to everyone like Christianity and Islam. Not many converts to Judaism, mainly because they don't seek converts. Christianity and Islam, meanwhile, feel it's their mission to save the world from the rest of the heathens. But isn't salvation a personal matter that should not be influenced by outsiders? I would think so.

The South has an honor complex.

Remember the Simpsons episode where Homer flees Springfield because a Southern gentleman challenges him to a duel? "I demand satisfaction," is the memorable line from the episode. And don't forget Tomaco!

Nice to see racists now have their eyes on Latinos in Indiana.

No comment. Read it.

Tomorrow--that is today--letters!