Ask a Mexican

Is Mexico's Narco War a Revolution?

Dear Mexican: I read in your book that Mexico is due for a revolution about every 100 years or so. Do you think the drug war presently being fought between the cartels and the Mexican government is actually just a revolution being funded by drug money?

—The Ugly American

Dear Gabacho: Scary how prescient I was, ¿qué no? You'd think I was Mayan! And while the tens of thousands of dead, the hundreds of thousands of Mexicans forced from their homes to flee the narco-violence and the millions of dollars spent to fight the multibillion dollar drug industry seem like a revolution, there are no politics involved with the drug cartels. You'll probably see a revolution in the ballot box next year, as Mexican voters will no doubt toss the PAN out of office and go back to the PRI, the political party that ruled Mexico for more than 70 years, which shows the only real result of Mexico's centenary revolts remains the same: Meet the new jefe, same as the old boss.

I am an openly gay Jewish man; my partner is Mexican-American. My family talks about our relationship with me all the time; his family doesn't discuss it. We've been together two years, and it has never even been acknowledged! Why is this so common with Mexicans? Of course, I don't bring it up, either. I play the in-the-closet game with them. I am afraid to say anything that will hurt our relationship. Any suggestions?

—Oy Vey with the Homophobia

Dear Heeb: You didn't reveal enough info. Is your partner out to his familia? Have you talked about your discomfort with him? Are you in a serious relationship? You might think so, but does your partner? There definitely might be a cultural component to your partner's shunning of you: The Mexican has scores of gay primos whose orientation is never discussed at birria Saturdays and carne asada Sundays, and it's because the older generation simply doesn't like jotos and is in denial that some of its beautiful progeny are full-fledged mariposas. But the Mexican also knows of many old-school families who openly embrace their gay sons, daughters, nephews, nieces and the like. It could honestly be that the family is trying you out to see if you're worthy of their son — shit, my papi didn't even acknowledge my now-brother-in-law until a good five years into his courting of my sister.

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Gustavo Arellano
Contact: Gustavo Arellano