Dear Mexican: My question is simple: Can you please confirm the fact that there are doctors, lawyers and other professionals living in Mexico? I’m a Mexican-American woman living in Chicago who had a heated discussion about that topic. My friend who is a teacher at a local school was of the opinion that there really aren’t any. Her point was when we see immigrants on television, none are doctors, lawyers or any other professionals, for that matter. She believes that the only wealthy Mexicans are drug lords. There seems to be a lot of ignorance and confusion about this topic. Please enlighten her and those who think like her. —Incensed in Chicago
Dear Brazer: Por supuesto there are doctors, lawyers, accountants, scientists and other professionals in Mexico—who do you think sews up the narcos after a gun battle, fights off American extradition efforts, launders their money, and devises nuevas ways to smuggle?
Why do all Mexican restaurant workers cram the napkin dispensers so full that you can’t possibly remove a napkin without a pair of pliers? —Messy Eater
Dear Gabacho: It’s called “refilling a napkin dispenser.”
Something I’ve never understood about other Mexicans, as I am one … when speaking to other Mexicans about higher education and its importance, they always interrupt me to place an emphasis on the associate’s degree.
I’ve wanted to slap a primo/prima/amigo silly. Why the low standard? I’ve asked educators about this before and been told it was a low achievement standard that was placed on Mexican-American students in the 1960s and 1970s by mainly high school counselors. True? —Párate and Deliver
Dear Wab: Instead of giving your primo/ prima/amigo a cachetada, why don’t you help them transfer to a four-year university? Heaven knows America needs more of its Mexicans at institutes of higher learning—on top of our abysmal high school graduation rates, not enough of us go on to get a college diploma. The 2008 U.S. Census Bureau Current Population Survey’s Annual Social and Economic Supplement found that only 28 percent of Latinos who finished high school went on to earn at least a bachelor’s degree—and the percentage for Mexis is undoubtedly smaller (the survey didn’t break down its figures by Latin American nationality). Why the low standard? Ignorance, silly! Not just limited to Know Nothings! Oh, and I don’t think there was a widespread gabacho counselor conspiracy in the 1960s to funnel Mexicans of that generation into community college—most encouraged their charges to not bother with education, period.
Why are Mexicans so … laid back? —Crazy and Lazy
Dear Gabacho: Mañana, mañana. Que será, será. Mexicans sleeping under a cactus. All iconic American commentaries on our inherent relaxed nature. La verdad is, Mexicans are more neurotic than Woody Allen’s on-screen persona—and if you don’t believe me, you try living life avoiding la migra or knowing that if white teens in a Pennsylvania hick town murder you, they’ll get off with simple assault.