Dear Mexican: So often when we see Mexican bands perform in the U.S. and Mexico, the crowd at some point starts chanting "Cu-le-ro!" ("Asshole!") Why does the crowd yell "Cu-le-ro!" at a band that they seemingly adore and paid a lot of money to see perform? Even fellow Latinos are really confused by this one!
Gu Need Más Earplugs
Dear Pocho: "People yelling 'Cu-le-ro!' doesn't happen at every concert," says Javier Castellanos, legendary Latin-music promoter. "It's more of the chilango [nickname for people from Mexico City] crowd; they're always a little bit more rambunctious. And it's not just for any kind of music — it's usually the heavier, more metal stuff. I see the same rudeness at American concerts for that type of music, too." Castellanos is being too modest. Fact is, culero is the Bronx cheer of Mexican society. We use it to taunt anybody we think is acting haughty — politicians, sports teams, Miss America contestants and, especially, lollygagging bands who can't return for an encore fast enough. "Cu-le-ro" (and its cousin, "Chinga tu madre" — go fuck your mother — whistle) is a reminder that nothing is safe from criticism in Mexico — except the Virgin of Guadalupe and the right to enter the United States illegally, of course.
Dear Mexican: I've been on sex-offender registry websites a couple of times, and it seems there are a lot of names ending with -ez. Is there an elevated rate of sexual deviance among Mexicans? If so, why?
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
El Güero Guapísimo
Dear Super-Handsome, Light-Skinned Gabacho: Methinks you doth look for brownies too much. But I don't blame you. Turn on the television and radio, and you're likely to hear anti-immigrant pendejos screech about how Mexicans will rape you while stealing your job and playing banda music really loud. You'll probably hear them invoke the work of Dr. Deborah Schurman-Kauflin. Her 2006 paper "The Dark Side of Illegal Immigration: Nearly One Million Sex Crimes Committed by Illegal Immigrants in the United States" came to some startling conclusions, not least of which is that there are 240,000 illegal-immigrant sex offenders in this country, and that 93 of these cretins enter this country daily. Know Nothing politicians and even the House Homeland Security Committee's Subcommittee on Investigations have cited Schurman-Kauflin's paper in arguing against amnesty.
Schurman-Kauflin based her findings on a 2005 Government Accountability Office survey that showed 2 percent of illegals in federal, local or state prisons had committed a sex crime. She then applied that to the illegal immigrant population at large — voilà! Instant endemic perversity! But GAO data for 2003 (the most recent available) showed about 308,000 criminal aliens (legal and illegal immigrants) were in American prisons; they constitute about 3 percent of the nation's 12 million illegal immigrants. If only 2 percent of incarcerated illegals committed a sex crime, then it's intellectually misleading to arrive at the 240,000 figure.
For the Mexican, a more telling number in determining sexual deviance among an ethnic group is the percentage of criminals arrested for such crimes. In 2003, gabachos incarcerated for sex crimes represented about 18 percent of all gabacho inmates in state prisons; perverted Hispanics, conversely, made up just 11 percent. By this comparison, gabachos are more likely as a group to sexually assault you than Mexicans — but you won't hear the right repeat that factoid.