Those of you who watched the Oscars last Sunday probably saw Alejandro González Iñárritu give his very short speech. In case you didn't, or in case you forgot, González Iñárritu won the award for best director and his film for best film and I don't remember what the third award was for. He said, "I want to dedicate this award to my fellow Mexicans, to those who live in Mexico, and I pray that we can find and build the government that we deserve."
He also said, "I just pray that they [immigrants in the US] might be treated with the same dignity and respect as those who arrived before and built this incredible nation of immigrants."
Quite a lot of people in Gringolandia as in Mexico noticed and commented. My favorite column is by Jorge Ramos writing in Reforma. Anderson Cooper is the US version of Jorge Ramos, but Jorge Ramos has Andersoon Cooper beat by a mile (or maybe 1.61 kilometers), although maybe because he has such varied places to express himself and those places don't mind references to writers like Octavio Paz..
Among other things, Ramos said,
Ramos continues, "There is little to celebrate. But when there is, no one stops us. So the cyber fiesta for winning four Oscars—film director Alejandro González Iñárritu (3) and cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki—is attention-grabbing. These Oscars follow the two won last year by Emmanuel Lubezki [his first] and director Alfonso Cuarón.
"We Mexicans are good at partying. Our fiestas are inversely proportional to our squabbles. The more problems there are, the more we enjoy partying. In Labyrinth of Solitude, Octavio Paz wrote:
'It is significant that a country as sad as ours has so many and such lively fiestas. For us, the fiesta is an explosion, an outburst ... There is nothing more lively than a Mexican fiesta.'"But, also, our fiestas are a form of protest. We take advantage of them to complain and let off steam. Once again Paz:
"In the swirl of the fiesta, we explode. More than opening up, we tear ourselves open."
"The second part of Iñárritu's remarks, about Mexican immigrants living in the United States, was equally strong:
'I just pray that they might be treated with the same dignity and respect," said Birdman's director, "as those who arrived before and built this incredible nation of immigrants.'
How could Sean Penn have joked,'Who gave a green card to this bastard?' Fortunately, the audience didn't laugh."Ït went over so badly because It reflects many Americans' xenophobia and rejection of Mexican immigrants."
"It isn't easy being Mexican, either inside or outside of Mexico. But when things are tough, the wins are richer, they have more impact, and the fiestas are a blow-out. For there, among the tequilas and the Tweets, I again heard the phrase: Success is the best revenge."