April 20, 2011

National Latino Museum Needs Creative Financing

From the New York Times:
National Latino Museum Plan Faces Fight
By KATE TAYLOR 
A move to create a new Smithsonian museum is running into a crowded National Mall and lack of will to pay for it. 
Seven years after opening its National Museum of the American Indian, and four years before the scheduled unveiling of its museum of African-American history, the Smithsonian Institution is being urged to create another ethnic museum on the National Mall, this one to recognize the history and contributions of Latino Americans. 
A federal commission has spent two years asking Latinos what they would want in such a museum, and next month the commission will report its findings to Congress, which would have to approve a new museum. 
Though the creation of such an institution has support from members of Congress, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and celebrities like Eva Longoria

What about Evan Longoria? They should get him involved, too.

Looking up the museum's official website, I see that the other celebrity on-board is Emilio Estefan, who is not Charlie Sheen's brother Emilio Estevez, who was in Repo Man. Instead, he's singer Gloria Estefan's husband. And he's Lebanese.

And the third-ranking celebrity involved, after Longoria and Estefan, is Henry Munoz III, who doesn't appear to have his own Wikipedia page.

As I pointed out last week in my Fernandomania column for Taki's Magazine, here we are in 2011 and the most famous of the 35,000,000 Mexican-Americans appears to be Eva Longoria. That's really weird when you stop to think about it. Is Desperate Housewives even on the air anymore? That's like if the guy who played Joey on Friends was the most famous Italian-American.
building it faces significant obstacles, including budget pressures, and a feeling among some in Washington that the Smithsonian should stop spinning off new specialty museums and concentrate on improving the ones it already has. 
“I don’t want a situation,” said Representative Jim Moran, a Democrat from Virginia, “where whites go to the original museum, African-Americans go to the African-American museum, Indians go to the Indian museum, Hispanics go to the Latino American museum. That’s not America.”

Would Hispanics go to the Latino American museum? They go to a lot of movies, but they don't go to see Latino movies much. How many Latinos are starring in Fast Five? To juice up the box office for the latest Fast and Furious movie, they didn't add a Mexican hero, they added a Samoan/black guy, The Rock. Are Hispanics really going to flood to a museum? Is anybody else?
In Washington, where politics infects all matters, there is wide acknowledgment that the 50 million Latinos who live in this country have become an increasingly important constituency. But even supporters of the museum acknowledge it faces a battle.

I suspect "boredom" is what it's really facing. The media constantly tries to prod Latinos into racial anger by telling them somebody wants to have a "fight" and a "battle" with them, but, on the whole, apathy reigns on all sides, except among Hispanic ethnic lobbyists:
“The atmosphere is not friendly at all,” said Estuardo V. Rodriguez Jr., a lobbyist with the Raben Group who has worked pro bono on the museum proposal, citing the economic pressures and what he described as anti-immigrant sentiment. 
The idea for a Smithsonian Latino museum was born in the mid-1990s when a task force said the Smithsonian had largely ignored Latinos in its exhibitions and should create at least one museum to correct that imbalance. 
The panel’s report, entitled “Willful Neglect,” found, for example, that only 2 of the 470 people featured in the “notable Americans” section of the National Portrait Gallery were Latino.

As opposed to 2011, when we can all instantly name countless Latino "notable Americans," like Emilio Estefan and Henry Munoz III.
There are dozens of other museums across the country that focus on the heritage or culture of Latinos, whose population in the United States grew by 43 percent over the last decade, according to 2010 Census figures. But supporters of the national museum say it is imperative that there be a similar presence in the nation’s capital. 
While the commission is not expected to make specific proposals about content, the museum would probably try to cover a wide swath of history, from the role of the Spanish conquistadors to the work of Latinos in the labor and civil-rights movements. It would include culture, from popular music to visual arts, and would try to feature people and traditions from all Hispanic countries. 

My heart's racing already. Where can I buy tickets?
Lisa Navarrete, a spokeswoman for the National Council of La Raza, a Latino advocacy organization, said it was unfortunate that Latino children who now travel to the Mall cannot see “their community and history and legacy reflected.” 

Think of the children!
She said that a museum that accomplishes that is particularly crucial now because discussions of immigration issues have created a “toxic” environment for Latinos. “It’s even more important to show other Americans that our roots go back centuries on this continent,” she said. 
Though legislation to authorize a Latino museum commission, known formally as the National Museum of the American Latino Commission, was first introduced in 2003 by Representative Xavier Becerra, a Democrat of California, it did not pass until 2008, as part of an omnibus budget bill. 

A fitting year.
The economy and the balance of power in Congress have changed much since that vote, with Republicans now holding a 49-vote majority in the House of Representatives.
Federal money for the museum would not appear to be an option, members of Congress say, as it was for the African-American and Indian museums. The National Museum of African American History and Culture has a $500 million price tag, half of which is being paid by the federal government. The government paid for two-thirds of the Indian museum.

I'm sure that Mexican-Americans would be happy to reach into their pockets and pay for it on their own, just like all the other charitable institutions Mexican-Americans have built, such as, uh, well, let me get back to you on this one. As Gregory Rodriguez, a columnist for the L.A. Times, explained:
In Los Angeles, home to more Mexicans than any other city in the U.S., there is not one ethnic Mexican hospital, college, cemetery, or broad-based charity.

When it comes to self-organizing for pro-social purposes, Mexicans are in a class by themselves.
Opposition to the Latino museum at this point is muted, and with the commission not yet having presented its report, few in Congress beyond the group of ardent supporters have focused on the issue. 
Representative Jack Kingston, a Republican of Georgia, said in an interview that he supported a Latino museum as long as it was not financed with federal money, and as long as he was assured that the museum would not become “an interest group’s platform to advance political agendas.”

I guess that means he's against it, because it will cost the taxpayers a lot of money and it will promote a leftist agenda. Those are givens.

Actually, this Latino museum just need some creative financing ingenuity. The tremendous trio of Henry Gonzales, Angelo Mozilo, and George W. Bush should be appointed to devise a mortgage for the Latino Museum. With zero down and no documents required, the museum's own mortgage, along with the subsequent default notices, could then serve as educational exhibits helping explain the Latino role in the Recent Unpleasantness in the mortgage market.

78 comments:

Anonymous said...

Why is it weird? She's hot.

Thinking that's weird is weird.

CJ said...

“I don’t want a situation,” said Representative Jim Moran, a Democrat from Virginia, “where whites go to the original museum, African-Americans go to the African-American museum, Indians go to the Indian museum, Hispanics go to the Latino American museum. That’s not America.”

So, Moran, if you actually think that ... why the hell are you a Democrat?

Anonymous said...

So many things to comment on:

1. Emilio Estafan: Much like Salma Hayek, the poor man is obviously a self-hating Lebanese. Come on, Emilio, where is your Arab pride? Shouldn't you be working at getting an Arab American National Museum on the Mall?

2. "and would try to feature people and traditions from all Hispanic countries.": I truly look forward to being educated on the deep impact that Paraguayans have had on American culture.

3.“It’s even more important to show other Americans that our roots go back centuries on this continent,” she said. " Wait, I though that this was supposed to be a Museum about Latinos in the USA? Is it going to be about Latinos in Mexico and Peru?

Anonymous said...

I was at the Mall last yr. I looked forward to the Indian museusm and it looked really nice from the outside. Inside... it was like the biggest daycare center in the world. I mean there was NOTHING but empty space and a few knicknacks.

Anonymous said...

How long before a gay museum?

Anonymous said...

Steve I was thinking of you while browsing the magazine racks today. Approx zero mestizo faces on display. Very few hispanics of any sort. Zeta Jones - 1/2 spanish? - and Longoria ...and old what's her name from In Living Color.

But there is that Armenian family in the tabloids ...and Snookie. What category confusion. Someone ask Abe Foxman why there's no Middle Eastern category.

Anonymous said...

We used to have museums according to fields such as natural history, technology, science, medicine, astronomy, animal life, etc. Now, we have museums according to 'identity'. I guess too many fields were dominated by 'dead white males'.
But a museum of American music could have lots of blacks. But then, it would mostly be white, black, and Jewish and not much else.

Anonymous said...

But what about all the other groups that are suffering from "Willful Neglect?" Museums must be built on the Mall that will honor the achievements of Australian Aboriginal Americans (where would we be without the boomerang?), Ainu Americans, Arab Americans, Romani Americans (Gypsies to you hegemonic racists out there), Sami (Don't you dare call them Lapps), Turkish Americans, etc.

Anonymous said...

Let's see, if the proposed museum is built, that would mean that we would have separate museums for Blacks, Latinos (of any race/ethnicity), and American Indians. At that point, would the National Museum of American History only be about White Anglos?

Glaivester said...

Catherine Zeta-Jones is 1/2 Welsh and 1/2 Irish. Not Latino at all.

Ron Mexico said...

But the real question, I think, is why the NYT is tacitly colluding in--what one would otherwise suppose to be most amenable to WN-types--the classification of 'Latinos' as a quasi-racial group to be set along side 'Whites' and 'Blacks'--rather than, e.g., forming a taxon on all fours with 'Italian-Americans' and 'Micks'. Res ipsa loquitur? Maybe..

Anonymous said...

Jessica Alba is half Mexican.

Salma Hayek is half Mexican by race.

Carlos Santana.

RKU said...

Actually, this lack of significant Mexican/Meso-American Hispanic institutions in the U.S. is hardly surprising...

The key factor is a simple one: virtually all the Mexican/Salvadoran/etc. immigrants who came here are from the working-classes, while their elites tended to stay home (after all, why would the elites want to leave?). This is pretty similar to what happened with lots of other immigrant groups, such as the Italians and the Poles or other Slavs. Now many millions of Slavs came here several generations ago, but it's pretty hard to think of a single prominent Slav celebrity. Offhand, the only name that comes to mind is Charles Bronson, and I'll bet lots of people actually think he's part Mexican rather than Polish. Similarly, neither Slavs nor Mexicans tend to have the political dynamism or aggressiveness of e.g. Irish, or the "vibrancy" of blacks. So they tend to punch well below their weight in attracting visibility or attention in the cultural or political spheres. Meanwhile, in the case of the Cubans it was instead almost the entire elite which originally immigrated, so their relative cultural/political impact has been massive by comparison.

Another important factor is the historic relationship between the people and their own elite. In the case of the Irish, they were generally aligned as allies against the hated British oppressors, and most other groups have typically had positive or at least neutral feelings toward their elites. But Mexicans have traditionally hated their elites as being parasitic and incompetent, basically the people whose mistakes and oppression were a large factor in impoverishing them and eventually forcing them to leave their own country and come here instead (I think some Italians may have arrived with similar sentiments).

So just as young blacks in the South were raised for generations upon stories of their cruel treatment by whites, and Irish upon similar stories of the English, the traditional hated enemy of ordinary Mexicans has always been...elite Mexicans. By contrast, Mexicans have never had any significant hostility toward Norte-Americano whites (except for a tiny sliver of university-trained ethnic-activist radicals). And since "nationalist ideology" is generally created and promoted by educated elites, Mexican immigrants---who arrived without these elites and anyway regard them as their enemy---tend to rank very low on the "ethnic nationalism" scale, with their lack of interest in Latino movies or Latino museums being a perfect example of this. Meanwhile, I'll bet there are already 100 Cuban museums across all of South Florida.

I've always told my East Coast friends that if they wanted to understand Mexicans (whom they had seldom directly encountered until the last decade or so), they should just pretend they're Italians (or Poles), and their predictions will be correct nine times out of ten.

Anonymous said...

I don't know the reason for this Steve.
When the European ethnicities immigrated they were usually very well organised with their own hurches, mutual associations, schools etc.Perhaps the best organised of all were the Ukrainians in Canada.
I believe this has a lot to do with their cultural roots in Europe, they were pretty well organised at home wuith a real senseof who they were, their roots, their history and culture.In the USA they tended to gravitate around charismatic leaders who kept the traditions going, whilst trying to fight their corner in the struggle for life in the USA.
Mexicans however, never really seemed to have as sense of organisation.Why, I do not know - I suppose they never had a real sense of identity or of belonging or a tradition of leadership 'from the people'.Their MO seems to be entirely different, it seems to be imposition of a mass population rather than a sense of exile and relatedness.

Anonymous said...

To the poster who says he can't think of many 'Polish celebrities'.
Hasn't he considered the possibility that many people in the public eye anglicized/changed their names?

Francis said...

Couldn't we create a really nice "online museum" for like 1/1000th the cost?

agnostic said...

Could they find the South American idol from Raiders of the Lost Ark? That thing made a pretty substantial contribution to American culture.

Of course the museum would have to guard it from onlookers better than the Hovitos did.

Captain Jack Aubrey said...

"I looked forward to the Indian museusm and it looked really nice from the outside. Inside... it was like the biggest daycare center in the world. I mean there was NOTHING but empty space and a few knicknacks."

Appropriate - kinda like North America looked to our ancestors.

I wonder why they don't build a National Anglo-Saxon Museum. I bet they wouldn't find anything but boring whitebread crap to put in there - like the Constitution, the Declaration, the telegraph, the telephone, the airplane, the steam engine, the compact disk, the television, etc. etc. etc.

But those exhibits are already elsewhere. All Americans get credit for those.

"How long before a gay museum?"

Now that I actually would go to see. The hottest fashions, and a free musical everyday at 11, 1, and 3.

"Approx zero mestizo faces on display. Very few hispanics of any sort. Zeta Jones - 1/2 spanish?"

Try zero percent Spanish. From Wiki: "Zeta-Jones was born Catherine Zeta Jones in Swansea, Wales, to Patricia (née Fair), an Irish seamstress, and David James Jones, a Welsh sweet factory owner..."

agnostic said...

"How long before a gay museum?"

At least they would play better music than the Mex-Am one.

"but it's pretty hard to think of a single prominent Slav celebrity."

Pat Benatar for starters. Steve Wozniak. Casimir Pulaski. Bill Mazeroski. Lots of others at the Wikipedia page. And they're only 10 million today, about 1/5 the size of Hispanics.

Steve Sailer said...

Gore Verbinski, director of Pirates of the Caribbean and Rango.

tommy said...

Without knowing very much about Hispanic contributions to fields like medicine, science and engineering, I'm going to guess that these categories will be dominated by the Cubans. It might even be the case that Argentinian- and Chilean-Americans have made more contributions here than Mex-Ams.

Puerto Ricans, Dominicans and (non-Lebanese) Mexicans will be credited with baseball players, a few pot-smoking comedians, some mediocre politicians, authors of books largely forgotten outside of Hispanic studies departments, Tex-Mex singers, ethnic activists and other such professional entertainers.

Colombians can brag about (Lebanese) Shakira and some non-naturalized cocaine smugglers who amused us in the 80's.

Hondurans and Mexicans alike can claim unfunny joke bandit Carlos Mencia.

Peruvians, Ecuadorians, and Bolivians aren't even on the map.

Guatemalans, Salvadorans and Nicaraguans? Unless MS-13 is up for a spot in the Hispanic Hall of Fame, then forget about it.

Tom Regan said...

Steve, all this confusion over why Latinos don't have the same level of achievement or attention that blacks have.
Simple. Blacks are a race. Whites are a race. Hispanics are not.
There are white Hispanics, and black Hispanics and various other hues in between. As far as I can tell, Hispanic means nothing more than Spanish speaking. Is it any wonder they lack a sense of common cause that blacks have, and whites used to?

Thrasymachus said...

There is some fascinating Latino history, but none of it happened in the current US. There was little Spanish settlement north of the current Mexican border. The arrival of Latin American immigrants in the last 50 years has been very uneventful.

Anonymous said...

"Jessica Alba is half Mexican.

Salma Hayek is half Mexican by race."

No, and no.

sabril said...

It's fortunate that our NAMs happen to be Hispanics. Imagine if we had an extra 50 million Arabs instead. Or an extra 50 million Blacks.

By the way Steve, here's an interesting way to find new blog topics -- find predictions with google news archive searches.

For example, you can search newspaper articles from 1980 for the phrase "by 2000" or "by the year 2000"

DCThrowback said...

@anon

Re: Jessica Alba

Alba submitted to a DNA/Genome test on the George Lopez show.

Imagine her shock when she found her ancestry was 87% White.

"Is Spain, you know, considered white?"

Anonymous said...

Poles are 3% of this country. The most famous Polish American is Martha Stewart. There pretty much are no other very famous Poles. A lot of groups besides Mexicans are weak at creating celebrities.

Steve Sailer said...

Yes, Poles tend to be below average in celebrities, perhaps because there weren't many elite Polish immigrants, like Zbigniew Brzezinski's diplomat dad, or director Gore Verbinski's nuclear physicist dad.

There weren't all that many elite Italian immigrants, like Enrico Fermi or Arturo Toscanini -- perhaps the Coppolas? -- but there have been no shortage of famous Italian Americans from the time of Joe DiMaggio and Frank Sinatra. You can't get much more famous than that.

Anonymous said...

Captain BS is the Anglo-Saxon version of Afrocentrism.

the steam engine, the compact disk, the television, etc. etc. etc.

telephone - lots of people
steam engine - a Scot
compact disc - Japanese
television - Northern Italian

Anonymous said...

This post is mean-spirited and it obscures the real issues: (1) the promotion by the federal government of racial distinctions and particular racial groups, funded with general taxes; (2) the balkanizing effects of ongoing mass immigration.

I couldn't care less whether Americans with Mexican ancestry have produced a lot of "celebrities" or "Mexican American" institutions. In fact, I find it much more important that a fellow citizen contributes as a regular productive member of society, assimilates, and is loyal to this country and only this country.

none of the above said...

It's common to hear Salvadorans and Mexicans and Colombians and such expressing pride in their identity as Salvadorans/Mexicans/Columbians, but I don't recall ever hearing people self-identify as Hispanic or Latino outside of two places: US politics (trying to make up an ethnic coalition so some would be Mexican Jesse Jackson can arise) and discussion of statistics (talking about how X percent of Latinos in the US have health insurance, say.). And their kids mostly think of themselves as Americans with grandparents back in Mexico.

That's got to be a big handicap in raising donations--that kind of depends on appeals to group identity and pride.

Casimir Pulaski said...

Poles are 3% of this country. The most famous Polish American is Martha Stewart. There pretty much are no other very famous Poles. A lot of groups besides Mexicans are weak at creating celebrities.

Why only celebrities - they're pretty vapid, transient and eminently replaceable for the most part? Most celebrities today are an embarrasement to their heritage, country and themselves.

A far better list of citizens who matter and shape the world would include academics, entrepreneurs, intellectuals, etc. That wouldn't really boost Latino accomplishment, but I suspect Poles would do much better in the League Tables.

Isabel Fuentes said...

"Jessica Alba is half Mexican.

Salma Hayek is half Mexican by race."


"Mexican" is not a race - it is a nationality.

* Selma Hayek is Caucasian whose parents were a Spanish opera singer and a Lebanese oil executive.

* Jessica Alba is 87% Caucasian by DNA tests.

* Current giant and former Mexican President Vicente Fox is approximately 93% European and 7% Indigina.

Latino culture seems to admire lighter hispanic mixes and not envy/resent them like American black culture does.

Would a Latino museum have a "keepin it real" test of authenticity and really exclude beloved Selma Hayak?

Anonymous said...

One big mistake that the Indian museum made was to expand its range beyond the US.

As a result it badly lost focus. Most folks want to know about their lives in the US where we live before Europeans arrived, and about the great conflict. That's all lost in the shuffle of miscellaneous info about Guatamala, etc.

And also, everything is distorted by presenting everything through the lens of pre-Christian religion and related PC which denies all archeology. It's not a museum, it's an indoctrination center. So sad.

Robert Hume

Anonymous said...

Why do they estimate the museum will cost so much? They should be able to find some cheap labor to build it...

Has to be said...

Not many elite Jewish immigrants either. Some (especially after 1917) but not many.

Anyway, in related news. Boehner refuses to host Cinco de Mayo reception.

djf said...

The Museum of Native Americans is the most boring of all the Museums on the National Mall. It has a huge amount of open space, some photos of individuals from various tribes, and a whole bunch of buckskin dresses ornamented with beads (behind glass cases). The Museum of Natural History (with the Hope Diamond) and the National Air & Space Museum are much much better. See them first.

Anonymous said...

a single prominent Slav celebrity

Well, for nerds & geeks, there is the uber-celebrity himself, Nikola Tesla.

Formerly.JP98 said...

"How long before a gay museum?"

Ever been inside an art museum?

Sgt. Joe Friday said...

What about Linda Ronstadt?

1974: Hot, and sang great American songs.

1986: Still not too bad looking, did a nice job with the Great American Song Book under Nelson Riddle's direction.

Now: Singing Mexican songs, gotten fat, and looks like she fell out of the Ugly Tree, hitting every branch on the way down.

John Mansfield said...

It's time for a word of praise for Hungarian billionaire Steven Udvar-Hazy, who donated $65 million so the Smithsonian would have a suitable place to display big planes, like a SR-71, a Concorde, a space shuttle, and numerous war planes.

Can you imagine a Hungarian museum on the mall? Now, that would be an interesting place with exhibits on the "Martians," von Neumann, Teller, Wigner, Szilard, von Karman, and whoever else. Maybe Dirac would get a spot by marriage.

tommy said...

Yes, Poles tend to be below average in celebrities, perhaps because there weren't many elite Polish immigrants, like Zbigniew Brzezinski's diplomat dad, or director Gore Verbinski's nuclear physicist dad.

As you once pointed out, Poles are an understated people. Even their high achievers stand out less than comparable individuals in other countries. Self-absorption and celebrity tend to go hand in hand. That's why exceptionally narcissistic populations like the Irish and the Jews do so well in the entertainment biz.

Captain Jack Aubrey said...

"Captain BS is the Anglo-Saxon version of Afrocentrism.

"telephone - lots of people
steam engine - a Scot
compact disc - Japanese
television - Northern Italian"

Telephone - Alexander Graham Bell
Steam Engine - James Watt

Both Anglo-Saxon Scots.

Compact Disc - James Russell
Television - Philo Farnsworth

Both men of British descent.

But keep posting "Anonymous." I love your work.

Additionally, it's odd that we continue to obsess about separating Scottish from English from Irish from Welsh. At the time of this country's founding, and for most of its history, they were all a single nation, either de jure or de facto (under James VI). Germany was not a unified country, nor was Italy, but we don't generally break out Hessians from Bavarians or Lombards from Calabrians.

Saint Louis said...

Isn't the Dog Whisperer, Cesar Milan, Mexican?

Anonymous said...

I was born in Washington DC and grew up in the suburbs. As a kid I spent many Saturdays an Sundays in the various Smithsonian museums. About twenty years ago I wanted to show it to my wife.

We flew back to the nation's capitol and joined the hoards of tourists on the Mall. The technology exhibits were very interesting. I saw my first three computers displayed - the Altair, the Commodore PET, and the Osborne portable. That was cool.

But too many exhibits had gratuitous leftist placards. For example, they had an early telephone switch board, but instead of any description of the technology there was an essay on how women were exploited as telephone operators. Something had happened to my Smithsonian. Everywhere we looked every opportunity had been taken to insert a political message.

So I'm not surprised but I am disheartened to see that this once great museum complex is evermore agenda driven.

Albertosaurus

Svigor said...

But then, it would mostly be white, black, and Jewish and not much else.

Another ANTI-SEMITE!!! who thinks Jews aren't white.

Anonymous said...

It's hordes, damnit. Hoards are what dragons sleep on.

Anonymous said...

I almost never see colored people when I go to a museum.

Formerly.JP98 said...

"I almost never see colored people when I go to a museum."

Are museum guards invisible to you?

Anonymous said...

You're talking about Slavs and about celebrity, and nobody's mentioned Andy Warhol?!

anony-mouse said...

Poles?

Carl Yastrzemski, Ted Knight, Loretta Swit, John Krasinski, Marilu Henner, Bobby Vinton, Christine Baranski, Jane Krakowski, Gloria Swanson, Roger Zelasny, the Wachowski Brothers, Wayne Gretsky, Tim Pawlenty, Pat Sajak, Gene Krupa, Mike Royko, Peter Cetera, Ed Muskie, and both Siemaszkos.

That's the problem with people here. they're obviously very anti-Pole but cover it up by blaming others for same.

Roland said...

My favorite Slavic-American celebrities: Ric Ocasek (Otcasek) and Benjamin Orr (Orzechowski; RIP) of the new wave hitmakers the Cars.

Anonymous said...

Natalie Wood, Yul Brinner, ummm... Weird Al Yankovic?

C. Van Carter said...

Here's an architectural rendition of the proposed museum.

Anonymous said...

There are plenty of famous Polish Americans, but they often don't have very Polish names:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Polish_Americans

The most influential one (for the worst) is undoubtedly Alan Greenspan.

Eric said...

The panel’s report, entitled “Willful Neglect,” found, for example, that only 2 of the 470 people featured in the “notable Americans” section of the National Portrait Gallery were Latino.

Is that because they're being neglected or because they haven't done much of note?

SouthernAnonyia said...

"Steve I was thinking of you while browsing the magazine racks today. Approx zero mestizo faces on display. Very few hispanics of any sort. Zeta Jones - 1/2 spanish? - and Longoria ...and old what's her name from In Living Color."

Zeta-Jones is completely Welsh.

SouthernAnonyia said...

"Additionally, it's odd that we continue to obsess about separating Scottish from English from Irish from Welsh. At the time of this country's founding, and for most of its history, they were all a single nation, either de jure or de facto (under James VI). Germany was not a unified country, nor was Italy, but we don't generally break out Hessians from Bavarians or Lombards from Calabrians."

Very good point. All the people of the British Isles are genetically pretty similar despite historical exaggerations amd myths which suggest otherwise. People make a big deal about the English being more blonde/Germanic and Welsh/Irish being more Celtic/red-haired, when in actuality the differences between these populations physically and to a lesser extent culturally are much smaller than the differences between North Germans and Bavarians, or the differences between Sicilians and the Genoese.

Truth said...

"Another ANTI-SEMITE!!! who thinks Jews aren't white."

Well, let's be honest; a lot of Jews are WWC (White When Convenient).

Anonymous said...

magazine covers can't afford to be too pc

there's too much $$$ on the line

jerry garcia would be a great hispanic except don't think he spoke spanish

doubt jerry qualifies as latin either

Anonymous said...

A lot of the Hungarians named above and some of the Poles are not ethnic Hungarians or Poles. They are Jews who were born in those respective countries.

Anonymous said...

I thought the Irish were actually traced to the Czech/Hungarian region and were an anomaly in the British Isles (German-Scandinavian-French).

Anonymous said...

Greenspan was born in the Washington Heights area of New York City. His father Herbert Greenspan was of Romanian-Jewish descent and his mother Rose Goldsmith of Hungarian-Jewish descent.

Yezhovshchina said...

The panel’s report, entitled “Willful Neglect,” found, for example, that only 2 of the 470 people featured in the “notable Americans” section of the National Portrait Gallery were Latino.

America has been a predominately white for about 350yrs until 1965. Latinos have only been a significant percentage for the past 50 some years.

Forgetting about the actual merit of people invovled, this fact alone sets a baseline that hispanics would optimistically make up 8% * (50/400) = 1% of the portraits in the National Gallery(assuming an avg US Hispanic population of 7% 1965-2011).

This sudden demand to rewrite the whole of American history and human accomplishment to reflect relatively recent ahistorical demographic changes smells of a Stalinist purge. It's like airbrushing out all references and images to 400 years of truths to accomodate the untruths of today.

Anonymous said...

"It's fortunate that our NAMs happen to be Hispanics. Imagine if we had an extra 50 million Arabs instead. Or an extra 50 million Blacks."

I guess it's better to have breast cancer than pancreatic cancer.

Anonymous said...

Notice how there are almost no Mexicans in commercials, but they make it seem like blacks are 50% of the population in commercials.

Anonymous said...

"Another ANTI-SEMITE!!! who thinks Jews aren't white."

On Half Sigma's site I have seen Jews say they are not white.

Anonymous said...

"Additionally, it's odd that we continue to obsess about separating Scottish from English from Irish from Welsh."

I see what you mean,but if you go to the UK it seems the Scots hate the English and consider themselves a different country from what I have seen. A Scottish coach, I think David Moyes of Everton, considers himself a foreigner in England the same as an African is a foreigner. They all have their own national team too which seems ridiculous.

Mr. Anon said...

I would support a Latino museum, American Indian museum, Black museum, Gay museum, etc. As long as all the traditional Smithsonian museums (up through the Air and Space museum) are torn down.

Washington, as the capitol of a now ridiculous nation, needs to be made manifestly ridiculous itself. Let us strip from our elites the pretense that they govern anything other than a fractious, decaying empire.

Captain Jack Aubrey said...

"I would support a Latino museum, American Indian museum, Black museum, Gay museum, etc. As long as all the traditional Smithsonian museums (up through the Air and Space museum) are torn down. Washington, as the capitol of a now ridiculous nation, needs to be made manifestly ridiculous itself. Let us strip from our elites the pretense that they govern anything other than a fractious, decaying empire."

You can scribe away all your days, and never come up with anything as eloquent as that. Thank you, Mr. Anon. Thank you.

"Well, let's be honest; a lot of Jews are WWC (White When Convenient)."

Yes. By making themselves white when the quota game is played, they entitle themselves to the entire ~70% of the white share of the pie.

The US is 14% black and 2% Jewish. The US Senate is 13% Jewish, counting John Kerry. It is 0% black. The liberal, pro-AA, pro-quota Jews - all 13 of them - could easily remedy nearly all of both Jewish overrepresentation and black underrepresentation by stepping down on the condition that a black is nominated to replace them. It hasn't happened yet, and I predict it never will.

David said...

Affirmative action museums. What about the lesbian midget museum?

Syncretism said...

Steve,

As for the ingenious mortgage idea, that mortgage's credit rating will have to be robo-signed. Phone the Congressional Hispanic Caucus.

Mr. Anon said...

"David said...

Affirmative action museums. What about the lesbian midget museum?"

I don't know if there's a museum dedicated to that topic, but I'd bet it's got a website hosted in the Phillipines.

Captain Jack Aubrey said...

"The arrival of Latin American immigrants in the last 50 years has been very uneventful."

Other than the mortgage meltdown, the great recession, the near complete decay of California and the rest of the Southwest...you're right.

Glad it's been so uneventful.

silly girl said...

Oh, no, not latino and creative financing in the same sentence.

Anonymous said...

"browsing the magazine racks today. Approx zero mestizo faces on display."


who wants to look at mestizo faces, let alone pay to look at them?

If you want to sell something, put a hot woman or rich guy on it, not the maid/nanny/gardner.

Anonymous said...

agnostic said:

"Could they find the South American idol from Raiders of the Lost Ark? That thing made a pretty substantial contribution to American culture."


I love agnostic!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Has to be said...

"The US is 14% black and 2% Jewish. The US Senate is 13% Jewish, counting John Kerry."

If you count someone like Kerry as a Jew there are a lot more Jews in the US than 2%.