Photo by Luis Olguin.

Esperate Guey, No Seas Pendejo

Cinco de Mayo is so overrated.

Cinco de Mayo is one of the least celebrated holidays in Mexico. The only state which actually celebrates Cinco de Mayo is Puebla, Mexico. Yet, it seems like America decided to throw a bone to the minorities and “celebrate” with them.

Cinco de Mayo isn’t about independence, but instead about the unpredictable victory over the French army in the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. The real Mexican Independence Day happened 50 years before the battle that occurred on Cinco de Mayo on September 16. So we have been having this celebration 50 years late, and not even on the same day.

At first, this started as a simple celebration where small amounts of drinking actually happened. But in America, Cinco de Mayo is now a day that has been white-washed and exploited for commercial use toward the Mexican people, and is celebrated with tequila shots, margaritas, hard-shell tacos, and cervezas.

It’s a day where you’ll see advertisements in your local store or bar for discounted beer and tequila shots every where. It’s a day where everyone will have a half-ass reason to get pissed out drunk and black out. It’s a day where the overplayed songs of Vicente Fernandez and Lupillo Rivera’s are in loop at your local cantinas.

Many people are uneducated as to why they celebrate this Mexican holiday, but they should not stay ignorant and uneducated about the Mexican history of Cinco de Mayo. Even if they aren’t Mexican, one should know what they’re celebrating.

Cinco de Mayo has become a massive celebration in the United States especially in Los Angeles. This is due to the power of culture Mexican immigrants carry with themselves. But now, this celebration is out of hand and it is being exploited to promote ridiculous promotions from companies who aren’t even truly Mexican.

“Authentic” Mexican food like taco bowls, cheese nachos, and 50 cent hard tacos with cheese are heavily promoted on this day from restaurants like Chipotle or Taco Bell. Even our “lovable” president approves and embraces the celebration of Cinco de Mayo with his “genuine” Mexican cuisine.

Now, there are alternative ways to celebrate Cinco de Mayo, rather than getting pissed out drunk or wearing that stupid “sombrero.” There are other responsible celebrations which do not take a toll in your liver or your dignity by being a asshole to other cultures.

One of the alternative options to celebrate is to educate yourself about the true history about Cinco de Mayo and how it how it has become so popular in the U.S. Second, is to try a genuine family-owned business with real Mexican food, and music. Third, is to celebrate responsibly without disrespecting the true culture with those fake serapes, or fake mustache they sell in party stores. This also means to avoid any disrespectful language or hashtags like “Cinco de Drinko.”

Finally, one should recognize the equality of the people whom the celebration belongs to. Do not disrespect my culture and go blackout binge drinking to thinking that is how you support Cinco de Mayo. Rise above the ignorance and become more responsible with the actions you take.