Lost another friend to racism

Here I am, once again, pondering. I’ve been down this road many times before, with regard to the Confederate Flag. Last time, it had to do with a lake trip, and my ex-girlfriend’s dad’s “lake friends.” They refer to themselves as “Buoy 13.” Among their ilk were many a redneck, and one in particular flew a Confederate Flag from his fifth wheel. The first time I saw it, the damned thing bothered me. I told my girlfriend, and her mother. I got VERY agitated, but girlfriend’s mom (a Native American from South Dakota of all places) told me to keep quiet, that I would upset my girlfriend’s dad if I made any sort of a fuss.

The damned thing pissed me off. I said something about cutting the flag down later that night, and slammed a twelve-inch buck knife down on the camping table. I then decided to make a silent statement; I went inside the tent, grabbed my Brown Beret, went outside the tent and sat in a chair. Everyone saw me wearing my Beret, and tensions rose. I said nothing.

My girlfriend then decided we leave the lake early, and we began packing up. Later, in town my girlfriend’s thirteen year old nephew told me …”those guys at the lake said you’re like a Nazi, and that I should stay away from you…” I was taken aback. First of all, the self-proclaimed rednecks never once confronted me, or told me anything about my Beret. Secondly, I was surprised they would know anything about why I was wearing a Brown Beret. They were obviously filling her nephew’s head with lies.

The next time we went to the lake, I premptively asked my girlfriend if those Confederate Flag guys would be there. She said she didn’t know. We ventured off to the lake that weekend. The Confederate Flag guys showed up that night at our camp. They were nice, jovial, etc. They shared a big bottle of Crown. The next morning, a bunch of us left the camp on our boats to check out a cave. Again, this was fun and lighthearted. But when we returned to the camp, someone who had stayed behind was once again flying that fucking flag. Again, I was furious, and again we left early.

The issue caused a lot of fights with my girlfriend, who was half Chicana and half Native. She was raised in the heights, around mostly white people – who were mostly self-proclaimed rednecks.

The issue of the flag later came to a head at another party, in the East Mountains (East of Albuquerque). That night was a full October moon, and I was nervous. The moon always does things to me. I again asked my girlfriend if the Confederate Flag brothers who had the fifth-wheel were going to show up. And yet again my girlfriend told me she didn’t know. We went to the kegger. Later that night, the Confederate Flag brothers DID show up in their fifth-wheel. They didn’t put the flag up, likely because it was dark and late.

I still approached one of them calmly, and told him, “I just wanted to tell you, I saw you flying that Confederate Flag at the lake, and I wanted to let you know I took offense to it.”

His eyes got big. He said, “That wasn’t me, that was my brother, Ian. I’m not racist, I’m a quarter Spanish…” blah, blah, blah. We had a frank, civil, amicable conversation, but others at the party overheard and started butting in. I blurted something out about the Irish being wetbacks too, since they crossed a whole ocean to get here when a young lady said, “Hey! My boyfriend is Irish and I take offense to that!” Then my girlfriend called her a bitch and told her to shut her mouth. Apparently there was an underlying beef between my girlfriend and some other girls at the party. One of the girls took a swing at my girlfriend, and she swung back, landing every punch.

Soon after a brawl broke out, and spread like fire. People were swinging at each other left-and-right. I pushed the crowd away from us, and got us out of the crowd, somehow managing to duck every stray and deliberate punch.

Some months later, we went to a shit kicker bar in Albuquerque called the Dirty Bourbon. It’s actually not any real cowboy bar by my standards. I grew up in the country. This was more like an urban cowboy bar. I hated the place. Some people from the kegger crowd were in good with the bouncers, and told them I hit a girl with brass knuckles at the kegger in Moriarty, and that I was a dangerous person. I was 86’d from the bar, though I had done nothing. My girlfriend and I got in an argument because she wanted to stay. The argument escalated, to the point she yelled, “Where the fuck are your Brown Berets now?!!!”

This sort of thing led to the eventual breakup with my then girlfriend, and it was very sad because her two sons regarded me as a father figure to them. But I could no longer take her and her family’s apologetic attitudes about racism, bigotry and American Exceptionalism. I could no longer stand her dad’s incessant NASCAR watching, NFL, Reality TV, and all the bullshit they used to pull the wool over their eyes. I eventually ejected myself from the situation – harshly, and permanently.


So today I write this because it seems I have yet again confronted the Confederate Flag. A good friend of mine recently got a new boyfriend, and was over the moon with him. He seemed to treat her nicer than some of her passed boyfriends. My friend is a half Navajo, half Chicana, single mother, who lives at home with her parents and daughter. She doesn’t work, but goes to school, and up until recently has been a very good person to me. The whole time she’s known me, she’s known that I’m a Brown Beret. She has met my friends who are Brown Berets. She always thought it was cool that I was a Brown Beret.

I met her new boyfriend this passed weekend, at her birthday dinner. The dude was a creep – twelve years older than her, and kept sitting like he was trying to invoke James Dean, but he just came across as a creepy douche bag. Being what I am, and what I know I am pretty adept about identifying tattoos. I know gang affiliations and what jailhouse tattoos mean. My friend’s boyfriend had a scraggly jailhouse looking tattoo of a Confederate Flag on his forearm. He wasn’t trying to hide it, but I saw it immediately. I had some crude inscription above it. For the sake of my friend’s Birthday, I decided to say nothing that night.

The next night another friend and I met Birthday girl and her boyfriend at a house party. They had been drinking quite a bit, and so had the friend I accompanied, who started making conversation, and then asked the boyfriend about his tattoo. He got really uneasy, agitated and uncomfortable – almost defensive. I then blurted out, “That’s some racist-assed shit right there.” By this point I got a better look at his tattoo inscription. It had his name, and a number. Had to be KKK or some shit. He got even more defensive and began yelling. I began yelling back. I told him, “lets settle this outside! All tell you what, I’m gonna go take a leak, and when I get back, we’re gonna settle this!” I wasn’t gonna throw down with this huge urge to piss the whole time. How good could one feel about cleaning someone’s clock while wetting one’s own pants?

I got up and took the fastest leak I’d ever taken. When I got back, he and my friend were gone. Worse yet, they left her car behind, along with her cellphone. The rest of us were worried sick about her. He was a creep, and from his reaction we worried he’d pull some sick stuff on my friend. We waited all night, and she never returned. I was fixing to call her dad the next morning when I got a scathing, nasty text message from her accusing me of ruining her Birthday weekend. I couldn’t believe it. I couldn’t believe I was worried about her.

Sadly, her and I are no longer friends. Nor should we be. I DON’T associate myself with “Confederate Apologists,” or people who downplay what the “Stars and Bars” mean. My former friend is a very dark complected, plump little girl with kinky hair, and there ain’t no chance in hell she’d be treated in the South with the same acceptance she gets in New Mexico.


As a Brown Beret I would be neglectful of my duties if I didn’t confront racism toe-to-toe. So many minorities (Chicanos in particular) in New Mexico have adopted this belief that they can get along fine with their bigoted, tongue-in-cheek racist counterparts if they simply turn a blind eye to the realities of racism. That is a sad and cowardly stance. And though I know that if I choose to “ignore” these little symbols of racism I too could be accepted among these types of people. But I would NEVER do that. I am forever congruent and in alignment with this cause to combat and confront racism, and to stomp it out wherever it exists around me.


Ricky Gonzales,

Brown Beret

The new tone of racism

Screencap of a facebook conversation that turned racial real quick.

Screencap of a facebook conversation that turned racial real quick

This Facebook image encapsulates the new tone of white supremacy in this country. This belief seems to be an underlying one which is held by a lot of Anglo people: that everything in this country was rightfully taken because the white Europeans prevailed by conquering over all the others. I’m sure this young white guy doesn’t consider himself to be a racist. In fact, he’s probably one of those people who says “I’m not racist! I have black friends.”

However if his underlying belief is that his race “kicked the asses” of the others, and therefore was righteous in creating the climate of colonization that many minorities grapple with today, then without question he is still just a racist.
I have continually encountered this mindset with many a white person. Many of them outwardly nice, easy going people who would consider themselves friendly, considerate, decent people.
But I have arrived at the understanding with most (if not every) white people I’ve come into better acquaintance with hold this underlying belief.

And how could they not? In public school, the histories they teach say very little about what the Europeans did on this continent. They touch briefly on it, but not in any way that might make the white kids too icky. Furthermore, white culture is represented in every facet of American life, and is in fact the vision of seeing everyone become “Americanized.” Their concept of this seem to limit the inclusion of other heritages, ethnicities and cultures while bolstering one culture, one way of doing things. One belief system, etc.

Racism in America today

Prime Minister of New Mexico’s Journal May 6, 2014:
It’s like a bunch of cockroaches-surfacing in the dark. You shine a light on them and they scatter, but they always come out in the darkness. I equate racism in America in much the same way. These filthy, stinking cowards who largely kept their views to themselves, because the rest of the decent people had shamed them into doing so.
Everyone has a right to be racist-no one is trying to suppress that right, nor should we be. But when we see the attitudes shift toward implementing oppression through legislation and policy, well that is another matter.
It may be a matter of semantics, but I’m not sure I’d call these agendas of oppression racism. They’re far more subtle. I’d call them classism, and ethnicism- still race based in ideologies, but so subtle they’re unspoken amongst those who support them.
This cowled, shielded attitude has shaped racism today. Since conventional racists had been shamed away from flagrantly casting racial epithets, they learned to take dog whistle queues in the media and amongst cohorts to prop up the same consensus.
Worse yet, while listening for these dog whistle queues, the racists have also learned to pull what I call “reverse, reverse racism,” which is for them to pull some racist sh*t, and then accuse those calling them out on it as “race baiters.”
As identifiers of oppression and racism we must NEVER be afraid of calling something as it is. Don’t ever hesitate.

I recall being at an Occupy Protest one time when someone volunteering for the Ron Paul presidential campaign showed up. He was real aggressive and wouldn’t shut the hell about Ron Paul, while passing out palm cards. The protesters continued to tolerate him, and make intelligent arguments with him. But I couldn’t stand this idiot, so I blurted out, above the crowd “Ron Paul is a fuckin’ racist! Get the fuck out of my face with your Dr. Ron Paul!”
All the protesters laughed at him. I was in full Brown Beret uniform, and I was ready to handle the exchange any way he wanted. I didn’t call this poor dude a racist, but I did point out that the man he was supporting and trying to cram down our throats IS a racist. It ended all discussion right there, and the dude quietly walked off, with a bunch of protesters cheering. Confronting racism is a beautiful thing.

Continued, Linguistic, Cultural Discrimination!

Please see article link below. We cannot have this discrimination continually marginalize our Gente! For some uppity, big-box, organic food company that pretends to embrace diversity to go on and discriminate against their employees among linguistic lines – the second most spoken language in the US, and the foremost spoken language in the world! This is disgusting!:


Posted at: 06/06/2013 8:53 AM
By: The Associated Press

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) – Two employees at a Whole Foods store in Albuquerque say they were suspended after complaining about being told they couldn’t speak Spanish to each other while on the job.

Bryan Baldizan says he and a female employee were suspended for a day last month after they wrote a letter following a meeting with a manager who told them Spanish was not allowed during work hours.

He says Whole Foods officials told them about company policy and issued the suspensions.

Ben Friedland, Whole Foods Market Rocky Mountain Region Executive Marketing Coordinator, says the Austin, Texas-based company believes in “having a uniform form of communication” for a safe working environment.

Friedland says company policy states that all English speaking workers must speak English to customers and other employees while on the clock.

Cesar Chavez Day sees violence, racial tension

reposted from : http://theorion.com


Nicholas Carr • Allison Weeks • Isabel Charles

Although Chico police report that the number of arrests was down during Cesar Chavez weekend this year, the holiday was marred by two stabbings and a fight that sent two people to the hospital.

Students also found alternative ways to celebrate the legacy of Chavez by taking to the streets in a march for the labor organizer who fought for civil rights.


In addition to 33 alcohol-related arrests, two stabbings occurred over the three-day holiday weekend.

A 23-year-old man was stabbed at a residence on Sunrise Court early Saturday morning.

Chico police officers found the man lying in a driveway with multiple stab wounds, and he was taken to Enloe Medical Center.

Police received varying suspect descriptions from witnesses and do not know why the man was stabbed.

A second man was stabbed early Monday morning.

He was walking with a group of men when he knocked over a garbage can, which upset the can’s owner, said Sgt. George Laver of the Chico Police Department.

The woman resident and the man began arguing before the man took a swing at her. She swung back in retaliation.

A group of non-residents came to the woman’s aid and caused a large fight in the middle of the street, Laver said.

One of the suspects is accused of beating up the 19-year-old who knocked over the garbage can before taking out a knife, according to the release.

The 19-year-old’s hand was cut during the fight, and he was taken to the hospital.

Police encourage anyone with information about the stabbings to contact the Chico Police Department.

Overall crime decreases

Despite the stabbings, crime decreased this weekend compared to previous years, according to a press release from the Chico Police Department.

In 2011, 50 arrests were made on Cesar Chavez Day alone, compared to this year’s 38 total arrests between Friday and Monday morning. Last year, police made 42 arrests between March 30 and April 1.

While officers working overtime were required to stay on patrol Friday and Saturday nights, overtime staff members working Sunday night were released early.

The fact that Cesar Chavez Day fell on a rainy Easter Sunday may have contributed to decreased criminal activity, according to the press release.

Cesar Chavez Day march

The student groups Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlan and the National Brown Berets participated in a march Sunday and shouted down those partying in sombreros and ponchos.

About 20 Chico State students marched through the south-campus area Sunday to peacefully protest what they saw as disrespectful partying.

The route led from the courtyard of the Student Services Center down Ivy Street.

From there, they marched up West Fifth Street to City Plaza, where a short ceremony was held onstage.

Last year’s march was mainly focused on the downtown and business area, MECha director Juan Guzman said. The revised route focused on the student neighborhoods of the south-campus area.

“All of the partying and stereotyping of the culture happens over there,” he said.

Andrea Lopez, a freshman social work major who grew up in Chico, said she doesn’t understand why students celebrate Cesar Chavez Day by promoting stereotypes.

“I just want people to know about out culture, and I still see a lot of racism around campus everywhere,” she said.

The groups marched through West Fifth and Ivy streets condemning students partying in ponchos and sombreros with cries of, “Shame on you!”

While collaborative steps from MEChA, Associated Students and the Office of Diversity and Inclusion helped reduce the negative aspects of the holiday’s party culture, there’s still work to be done, Guzman said.

There’s nothing wrong with celebrating a day off, but it shouldn’t be done in an offensive way, he said.

“We could care less if people get drunk,” Guzman said. “Just do it like you would on any other day.”

The Brown Berets, Brown KKK, and Minutemen

All too often are we as Brown Berets misguidedly referred to by our detractors as the “Brown KKK, Brown Nazi’s,” etc. This term has been blasted out not only by Anglo-Americans, but also by our own gente.

I’m not sure of the origins of labeling us the “Brown KKK,” etc., but it certainly poses as a sheer propaganda effort as there haven’t been ANY discernible documents or findings that the Brown Berets take a stance of racial, ethnic, or national superiority over others. One would hard pressed to see the Brown Berets listed as a hate group with any reputable research institutions or with the press – the LEGITIMATE press, as in journalists.

The Brown Berets differ a lot from the KKK. For one, there lies no record the Brown Berets have lynched anybody, dragged anyone to their death by being dragged from a pick up truck, or burned crosses in anyone’s property. We can with absolute certainty however point to historical evidence of Chicano’s being lynched, as seen in the book, “500 Anos del Pueblo Chicano. 500 Years of Chicano History in pictures.

Why then would the Brown Berets be accused of being a “Brown KKK?” It’s simple: Propaganda. All too often in the United States (and elsewhere) when mminorities, or the oppressed band together, and affirm they rights – insist on their rights, they make the establishment and the mainstream very nervous. In America in particular, the is a call to homogenize, or “Americanize” people into one culture. That prevailing culture seems to be the one that stems from Anglo/Germanic cultures, mixed with Abrahamic religions from Middle Eastern deserts, and idyllic Norman Rockwell paintings.

When a minority or oppressed group not only bands together, but decides to affirm and insist on their rights and self determination, and they elect to do this by organizing in a militia-style fashion, they are called other things as well. The Brown Berets have been called “Brown Nazi’s,” for instance. But what about other “militia” groups? The Ruby Ridge types, or the Hutaree (radical Christian militia accused of plotting assaults at certain funerals), what about the “Minuteman Project?”

The Brown Berets chose to organize militarily simply because that level of regimented order is required to protect themselves and others. There is a huge difference than the Brown Berets and the Minutemen. For instance, when addressing problems with the community, the Brown Berets work multilaterally with other non-profits and seek ways to SERVE their communities. The Minutemen blame all of their problems on one ethnic group, and seek to drive it out by force. There is a huge difference between working within the framework of one’s community, and seeking to “push out” beyond the borders of it.

In summation, it is not only wrong to refer to the Brown Berets as the “Brown KKK,” or as “Brown Nazi’s,” but it is also insulting, and ignorant. Calling us names such as these is what I refer to as “reverse race-baiting,” like when a racist calls a minority a racist. We saw this during the 2008 and 2012 Presidential Election cycles, when many angry anglo tea baggers would shout that Obama was a socialist/national socialist, and so were the nazi’s so therefore he is one, or when they had signs depicting him as a nazi. This is a new right-wing technique to call your enemy what you are, or to somehow append your weaknesses to the opposition. Its like reverse, reverse racism – it’s like racism in a spin cycle.

Don’t believe what the moronic dolts shout out, calling us the “Brown KKK, Brown Nazi’s,” etc. They’re liars, and they’re too lazy to figure out how to solve their problems and would rather play the blame game.