Born To Be Hurt

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Memoir  |  House: Booksie Classic

No one deserves to be marginalized or dehumanized. Yet, during my parent’s lifetime that was the expected and accepted way of seeing and treating the Chicano and Mexican communities. It was a sad commentary on America and on Texas. This was the 1930s through 1950s, and even into the early 1960s. Generations of ostracized, victimized and oppressed American Chicanos, relegated to a below human status. Treated like indentured servants, and at times here in Texas, no better than prized cattle or farm equipment. It was a time when we were born to be hurt.

BORN TO BE HURT

By Al Garcia

No one deserves to be marginalized or dehumanized.  Yet, during my parent’s lifetime that was the expected and accepted way of seeing and treating the Chicano and Mexican communities.  It was a sad commentary on America and on Texas. This was the 1930s through 1950s, and even into the early 1960s.  Generations of ostracized, victimized and oppressed American Chicanos, relegated to a below human status.  Treated like indentured servants, and at times here in Texas, no better than prized cattle or farm equipment.  It was a time when we were born to be hurt.

It is a part of our heritage and our legacy – to remember the struggles of our parents and our ancestors.  It is our duty as Americans not to forget our roots, and the passion of those who endured the indignities and the anguish.  It is our obligation as Chicanos (Americans of Mexican descent) to remember and to ensure that our children, and then their children, understand and appreciate the sacrifices that were made on their behalf.  The current and future generations of Chicanos should not assume an entitlement to the life they now enjoy.  It did not come easy.  It did not come overnight.  And they were not born into it.

I see in the Valley today, a distancing of our past and our heritage from the normalcy that we see around us.  How quickly we have forged ahead and left behind our history and the sweat and tears that paved the way.  I see a diminishing appreciation for the connection between Chicanos and the people across the river.  I am more appalled by those Chicanos who have completely abandoned their identity, in return for acceptance into a world and a culture that once despised, abused, mistreated, and even harmed, our parents just one generation ago.

For those who do not understand what I am talking about, you just have to look back a few months to see the barbarity of what it is I speak of.  It happened along our border here in the Valley.  People dehumanized.  Mothers and children separated and caged.  It is here again.  The return of a culture and a way of life we thought had been long forgotten.

No one is born to be hurt.  Not Mexicans or Chicanos, then or now, and not even those seeking to come to America for a better life, be it from across the river, or immigrants from across the seas.

America is the land of the free – no secret password or special key required.  The only requirement should be a dream, and a need to breathe free.


Submitted: June 21, 2021

© Copyright 2021 A.Garcia. All rights reserved.

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