Larry Whitten knows what it takes to whip a failing hotel into shape. He has over 40 years in the hotel industry and has a reputation of taking hotels that are struggling financially and turning them around.
What is his secret? Upgrading the appliances? Refurnishing the rooms? Nope. His secret is to get Hispanic workers to a) stop speaking Mexican and b) giving them good “white” names. So, for instance, Rafael is now known as Ralph. Jesus is now known as, well, Jesus. (Ok…that’s probably not a good example).
Naturally, the Hispanic workers at his hotel are throwing a fit over these new rules. They say that they have every right to speak Mexican if they want. They also insist that they have a right to use their given name; regardless of how difficult it is for Anglo’s to pronounce.
Larry probably should have known he was going to have trouble simply due to the fact that his hotel is located in Taos, New MEXICO! (As if Old Mexico just wasn’t large enough to hold everyone). Apparently, the locals are a bunch of tree huggers and support the illegal immigrants. And let’s be honest. If you work at a hotel or in an orchard of any type, you are illegal.
I can remember when we went through this with black people. Remember how they came over here with those hard to pronounce names like Mandingo and Kunta Kinte? Remember how we squashed the crap out of that immediately and gave them names like Paul and Toby? That’s the America I know and love. We then had normal names for almost 200 years. Hell, the Jacksons were hugely famous with regular names. (Except Tito. I don’t know what the hell happened there).
Sure, there has been some backlash and we are back to crazy names for the black folks. Names like Shaniqua, Kanye, Barack. (All of which fail spell check). Still, they speak English and even gave up on trying to make Ebonics a real language.
This is what our Hispanic friends need to do. Embrace their whiteness and rename themselves after 60’s TV stars. (The only exception being Beaver). Then, learn to speak American! I was shopping in Miami one time and ALL of the people were speaking gibberish. I yelled, “Hey Mexicans! Speak English!” They started flapping their arms, like they do, but continued speaking Mexican because they obviously knew no English.
Some of this is our fault. When we white people sing “La Bamba” and “Feliz Navidad”, we are only encouraging this type of lawless behavior. Look, if Salma Hayek can speak American, by God, everyone else can too. (Insert gratuitous Salma Hayek photo).