humansofnewyork:

"She taught me how to dance. We actually met at a graduation party. I was the only one not on the dance floor, and her friend bet her that she couldn’t get me to dance. I’d already said ‘no’ to ten girls, but she talked me into it. We were together 55 years. She died eight years ago, but I still dance every day."
(Mexico City, Mexico)

humansofnewyork:

"She taught me how to dance. We actually met at a graduation party. I was the only one not on the dance floor, and her friend bet her that she couldn’t get me to dance. I’d already said ‘no’ to ten girls, but she talked me into it. We were together 55 years. She died eight years ago, but I still dance every day."

(Mexico City, Mexico)

Have to remember from time to time that simply staying mostly out of debt while in school is awesome….I just I miss having savings! and not having to scramble over cancelled job contracts!

*sigh*

“Early in my freshman year, my dad asked me if there were lots of Latinos at school. I wanted to say, “Pa, I’m one of the only Latinos in most of my classes. The other brown faces I see mostly are the landscapers’. I think of you when I see them sweating in the morning sun. I remember you were a landscaper when you first came to Illinois in the 1950s. And look, Pa! Now I’m in college!”

But I didn’t. I just said, “No, Pa. There’s a few Latinos, mostly Puerto Rican, few Mexicans. But all the landscapers are Mexican.” My dad responded, “¡Salúdelos, m’ijo!” So when I walked by the Mexican men landscaping each morning, I said, “Buenos días.”

Recently, I realized what my dad really meant. I remembered learning the Mexican, or Latin American, tradition of greeting people when one enters a room. In my Mexican family, my parents taught me to be “bien educado” by greeting people who were in a room already when I entered. The tradition puts the responsibility of the person who arrives to greet those already there. If I didn’t follow the rule as a kid, my parents admonished me with a back handed slap on my back and the not-so-subtle hint: “¡Saluda!” I caught myself tapping my 8-year-old son’s back the other day when he didn’t greet one of our friends: “Adrian! ¡Saluda!”

However, many of my white colleagues over the years followed a different tradition of ignorance. “Maleducados,” ol’ school Mexican grandmothers would call them.

But this Mexican tradition is not about the greeting—it’s about the acknowledgment. Greeting people when you enter a room is about acknowledging other people’s presence and showing them that you don’t consider yourself superior to them.

When I thought back to the conversation between my dad and me in 1990, I realized that my dad was not ordering me to greet the Mexican landscapers with a “Good morning.” Instead, my father wanted me to acknowledge them, to always acknowledge people who work with their hands like he had done as a farm worker, a landscaper, a mechanic. My father with a 3rd grade education wanted me to work with my mind but never wanted me to think myself superior because I earned a college degree and others didn’t.”

Ray Salazar, Mexican etiquette some white people need to learn on dad’s 77th birthday.

(via shrinkrants)

I hate the “they were products of their time” excuse for racism/sexism/homophobia/etc in history.

Some people obviously managed to not be racist in the same time period, otherwise there would never have been any change

How about saying, “hey, people in history were racist”. And sexist. And homophobic. Etcetera. Instead of trying to erase history and pretend that everything that happened 20 years ago was a neutral “product of their time” and that the resulting inequality we still see is just a strange, unrelated coincidence.