LITTLE ROCK — Several freshman GOP members of the Arkansas House of Representatives today voiced questions over the legality of referring to May 5th as “Cinco de Mayo.”
The concern was triggered while a group of first-term representatives were dining at Juanita’s, when Rep. Jon Hubbard (R-Jonesboro) asked loudly, “this is still America, ain’t it?!” Hubbard then pounded his fist on the table, nearly spilling his plate full of fajitas and frijoles, and explained, “in America, we speak American, and can’t nobody tell me that the Constitution says anything about speaking Mexican on certain days!”
Noted constitutional scholar and freshman Representative David Meeks agrees. “I think, if you look at the Tenth Amendment — notice it’s not the ‘Amendmento de Tenthio’ — you’ll see that the Founding Fathers, in addition to abhoring slavery and creating a system of government based solely upon the King James Bible, specified that states have the right to decide whether to call May 5th ‘Cinco de Mayo.’ Forcing Arkansans to speak Spanish is really no different than forcing them to have healthcare.”
Rep. Hubbard took Rep. Meeks’ reasoning a step further. “Hell, I think it’s worse to force people to speak Mexican because there’s so many Mexicans here getting free educations and taking our jobs and having anchor babies. You know that’s what they do, right? They wait and they have their anchor babies every Cinco de Mayo. If any of them had documentation, especially the documentation I pushed for during the session, you would see that all of them born in America have the same birthday.” (Rep. Hubbard’s position remained unchanged even after it was explained to him, using very small words, that May 5th was the date of the Battle of Puebla rather than the date of Mexico’s independence and that it was statistically impossible for his position on Mexican dates of birth to be correct.)
“They are similar to the blacks, really,” added Rep. Loy Mauch (R-Bismark) between bites of his enchilda de espinaca. “Both groups come over here, and they start pushing their culture on us. If it’s not Spanish, it’s Ebonics. If it’s not Cinco de Mayo, it’s Kwaanzakuh or whatever they call it. The Orientals do that, too, actually, what with their kung fu and moo goo gai pan. All of these groups, they are trying to turn America into a nasty, miscegenated melting pot. General Nathan Bedford Forrest must be turning over in his grave, God rest his soul.” Rep. Mauch then insisted on humming “Dixie” for the rest of our interview.
Rep. Justin Harris (R-Prairie Grove) also agreed, but with a caveat. “Honestly, I think that Mexicans who have kids that are roughly daycare age…those Mexicans are fine. The rest need to go home. Or have more kids.”
All of the Republicans we spoke to at Juanita’s generally felt the same way. The consensus, between delicious, savory bites of Mexican food, was that an influx of Mexican culture was definitely a bad thing, especially for Arkansas. Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-Hot Springs) explained why. “You see, when I was at Yale, I noticed that there were many Hispanic students — at least five percent of the student body. At Yale, that is. Anyway, those Mexican and other Hispanic students at Yale, they frequently spoke Spanish with one another. Most Arkansans don’t speak Spanish, however, so it would be very hard for native Arkansans who fear the loss of their jobs to explain to scream ‘go back to Mexico, you Mexicans’ in a way that the Mexicans understood.”
“Additionally,” Rep. David Sanders (R-Little Rock) opined, “if we are going to rename May 5th in Spanish, it should obviously be ‘Cinco de Opportunity’ instead, so that even Mexican immigrants will realize the bounty that Arkansas has to offer. Before we ship them back where they came from, that is.”
When Rep. Sanders was told that this meant “Fifth of Opportunity,” Sanders quickly buttoned the jacket of his garish suit and left the cafeteria mumbling something about Alex Tejada.