That said, I feel obligated to say I can sympathize with what Mitt Romney is going through following his controversial “Mexican Mitt” Univision interview.
As a journalist and fellow Mexican-American, I know what it feels like to have your heritage publicly scrutinized.
I, too, have roots in Mexico where, as a youth, my family spent several minutes making a U-turn at the border after my father, who insisted on navigating, overshot Disneyland. I will never forget the friends I made — Chota Sanchez, Chota Guerra, Chota Ramirez — and to this day my kinship with the Mexican people remains strong.
And not just with the Mexican border police who, in a charming and uniquely Latin tradition, all have the first name “Chota” — something I wouldn’t know if I wasn’t pretty much Mexican.
In an age when it seems the personal life of our presidential nominee is as important as their stand on foreign policy, the economy and who should win “Dancing with the Stars,” I’m willing to bet that Gov. Romney, like me, has incorporated much of his Latin roots into his home life.
For example, if you were to visit The Enfermo Taco restaurant, you would find a photo on the wall of me in a sombrero, blowing out a birthday candle on a piece of flan.
And speaking of “chalupas” (which is Spanish for “birthdays”), we even had a piñata once.
That’s because, in spite of a busy American lifestyle, I feel it’s important to connect with my Latin heritage whenever possible, such as saying “gracias” when ordering food at Taco Bell, even if the person taking my order isn’t Mexican.
And who’s to say he isn’t?!
In the same way I don’t go around wearing “empanadas” (bullfighting pants) or a “muerto pollo” (hooded poncho) to let everyone know I’m pretty much Mexican, that doesn’t mean that Bill at Taco Bell isn’t.
Which might explain why he always slips me an extra handful of hot sauce.
That said, my fellow Latin voters and I would just like to say it doesn’t matter to us whether the next president is Mexican-American, African-American or New Jersey-American; as long as Ross Perot stays hidden, everyone should be happy.
In the end, deciding on our president should have nothing to do with the shade of their skin, and everything to do with a commitment to equal representation for Americans.
Besides, not all Mexican people are dark brown, just as all caucasians aren’t creamy white.
This is especially true on a busy campaign trail.