Sunday, August 12, 2007

Mexicans and the Mines


When I first heard of the latest mining disaster, this one in Utah, my mind conjured up an image of the men trapped in the pit. I imagined them as Mexicans.

Mexicans have been miners forever. In the 16th century, the Spaniards sent them down the mines to dig out silver and didn't let them out until they dropped dead. That is one reason why their population was practically depleted in one generation. The Spaniards didn't really see them as humans so they treated them like expendable beasts of burden.

Sadly, I turned out to be right wrt the Utah situation. If native sons of Utah had been in those mines, would the roof had been more secure?

Is it any accident that as we are demonizing Mexican immigrants, they are doing some of our most dangerous work?

The story of racism in Latin American is rooted in the dehumanization of the Indians by the Spaniards. Something to keep in mind.

1 Comments:

Blogger Marivi said...

Hear, hear...

4:50 PM  

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