Ask a Mexican!
Note to readers: The following is a serious, stat-saturated column. I promise more dwarf- and Dirty Sanchez-related questions next week!
A recent study by the Pew Hispanic Center reveals the following:
Mexican Answers Questions
·Hispanics are four times more likely than non-Hispanics to receive welfare.
·Hispanics account for three-quarters of the increase in poverty in the U.S.A.
·45 percent of Hispanic children are born out of wedlock.
·Hispanic women are 2.54 times more likely than white women to have abortions.
·Hispanic men are nine times more likely than white men to beat their partners.
· Hispanics are three times more likely than whites to die of AIDS and are four times more likely to die of tuberculosis.
·Hispanics are twice as likely to be incarcerated than non-Hispanics and are 3.8 times more likely to be incarcerated for murder.
·Hispanic youths are 19 times more likely to be in gangs than whites.
·Hispanics are three times more likely than non-Hispanics to drop out of high school.
·55 percent of Mexican-Americans consider themselves to be Mexican first.
Why would Americans want more of THAT?
—Round 'em Up, Ringo
Many gabachos and the occasional wab send me lists of "facts" supposedly gathered by respectable organizations that purport to tell it like it is about Mexicans. Problem is, these lists are riddled with deceptions, unverified assertions and outright lies and are often falsely attributed. Take the one Ringo cites. The Pew Hispanic Center never commissioned this "recent study"—most of the findings come from a September report titled Hispanics: A Statistical Portrait, commissioned by the New Century Foundation. Through their journal American Renaissance, the Virginia nonprofit publishes research papers and essays that focus on the depravities of minorities—historically blacks but increasingly Mexicans. AR editor Jared Taylor operates under the sheen of academia, but organizations such as the Southern Poverty Law Center and Anti-Defamation League have exposed him as a notorious fact-skewer who isn't above cavorting with neo-Nazis and Holocaust deniers; Taylor once wrote he publishes AR to "alert whites to the crisis of dispossession they face and to encourage them to act now in defense of the things they love."
But on to the stats. The charge of spousal abuse comes from a March 2004 AR article that offers no source. Statistical Portrait devotes a section to poverty but doesn't claim that Hispanics account for three-quarters of the increase in American poverty; in fact, U.S. Census figures released earlier this year for 2005 show only an increased poverty rate for Asians. The factoid regarding illegitimate births was published in a 2005 National Center for Health Statistics overview, and the Statistical Portrait adds that it "increased by 91 percent" between 1980 and 2000; what the Statistical Portrait doesn't tell you is that the illegitimacy rate for all Americans increased by 141 percent during the same time period and for whites at a promiscuous 148 percent—nearly one and a half times more than Hispanics.
I could go on, but ustedes get the picture. Stats are like Mexicans: You can make them do whatever you like as long as you provide room, board and sexy magazines. Besides, immigrants in the United States have historically been amoral, disease-ridden wretches (think of those dirty Norwegians of yore), so why should Mexicans be any different?
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you'll never miss Observer's biggest stories.