As an ally to all people of color, it means a great deal to me when POC address me using the vernacular of their culture. I love when I walk by an Asian family and they turn to each other, say something Chinesey, and laugh. Clearly, I brought them joy and they accept me. And don’t get me started on the time a black dude called me the N-word. Seriously, don’t get me started. Telling that story never seems to end well for me.
Recently there’s been a lot of talk about Hispanic rights and I’ve made it my personal mission to sooth the institutionalized wounds of these troubled people. I don’t know a lot of Spanish so this work can be tough, but I know at least one word for sure — puta. And it obviously means “ally” because Mexican dudes keep calling me that.
They knew my ally status immediately upon my arrival. I don’t know what it is about me that made it clear to these men that I was here to help, but boy, oh boy, did a heavy flow of “puta’s” rain down upon me when I first showed up in this neighborhood. I’ve never felt so accepted in a community of color.
My work here has been different than I expected. I thought there would be more protesting and I thought for sure we’d clash with the police before dispersing peacefully to our suburban homes with lots of great Instagram material at least once by now. But the police don’t seem to come into this neighborhood. Like, at all.
So instead, I’m focusing on a clear area of concern within the community — catcalling. The language barrier makes it hard to communicate, but from what I understand they often call female passersby the Spanish words for, “chick,” “bitch,” and “ally.”
They are a complicated and mysterious people. And this puta is here to save them.
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Article by Eric Navarro @erictries2hard