Five Reasons Why Orange County Should Thank Mexico Today
In no particular order:
*Without our cheap labor, where would our economy be? The great example, of course, is our much-mythologized citrus industry, from which so many made fortunes and which kept the county relatively extant for the post-World War II housing boom. If it wasn't for the lords' reliance on Mexican labor in the industry for the first half of the 20th century, they would've never had the profit margins that set OC on its comfortable ways. And, today, of course: janitors, day laborers, construction workers, and all the other invisible Mexis that keep this county together.
*The first Orange County soldier to give his life in the Iraq War was an illegal immigrant Mexican: Next time Know Nothings rail against Dream Act students, remind them that one of them would've been Jose Angel Garibay, who came into this country illegally as a child and gained his citizenship only upon giving his life to this country. Hey, Know Nothings: care to spill your blood for this country like illegals do?
*The food: Taco Bell, Del Taco, and El Torito aren't originally from Orange County, but they might've well have been: mitigated Mexican for the suburban masses upon which many entrepreneurs became millionaires many times over. Wahoo's Fish Tacos is from OC, and if it wasn't for SanTana's pioneering loncheros, the hipsters wouldn't have their luxe-loncheras to obsess over.
*Santa Ana: Orange County's seat is the laughingstock of la naranja, even more so than Stanton, but that's changing: the city's long-germinating plan to push out the Mexicans in its historic downtown is starting to get realized, and we'll finally get our own Long Beach! The Brave New Urbanists love to rave about the area's "character"--but why do you think those buildings were saved in the first place? Because gabachos abandoned the area during the 1970s and 1980s, and it was Mexican merchants who saved those buildings from the wrecking balls, only to have city officials spit in their face and slowly push them out.
So remember, Orange Countians: thank a Mexican today for our innate chingón-ness!