Why is the OC Register So Triggered by Mexicans Who Hit Donald Trump Piñatas?
Dale, dale, dale...
Illustration by Lalo Alcaraz
Yesterday, Orange County Register reporter Jessica Kwong took a break from her usual job as stenographer for SanTana's powers-that-be to offer a dispatch from a May Day protest in the city's Sasscer Park. It was fine enough, save for her paper's continued obsession with Mexicans and the supposed holocaust they inflict on Donald Trump piñatas.
Their anti-piñata bias was evident from the lead sentence, where Kwong said the rally was peaceful except for the "destruction of piñatas of Donald Trump and a Santa Ana councilman [Jose Solorio] some dubbed 'Latino Trump.'” Later in the story, she wrote that "the most violent part of the demonstration" happened when "adults... allowed children to beat [the piñatas] with sticks." Kwong must've thought she hadn't communicated her anti-piñata bias strong enough, so she then wrote that some random guy "told activists he disagreed with the action," then quoted the ninny, who said “If all these people got together and focused on policy and not hitting piñatas and sending the wrong message, they could actually do something productive.”
Ahem. Both Kwong and the "Santa Ana native" she quoted must not know any Mexicans. Because anyone who understands piñata culture knows that the Register's language to describe the Trump piñata phenomenon is ahistorical, xenophobic, and just plain pendejo. I can't believe I'm about to do this to a reporter whose job is to cover SanTana—the most-Latino big city in America—but here we go...
Jessica? A piñata is a children's game in Latin America that consists something stuffed with candy that kiddies summarily try to break to get to all the goodies. It's been the highlight of children's birthday parties for hundreds of years. The word is derived from the Italian pignatta, where the custom originated, but the game is now most associated with Mexicans. The original piñatas were just simple clay pots (a pignatta is such a vessel), but consumer society being consumer society, most piñatas nowadays feature a children's cartoon character—the most popular ones for the past couple of years have been Pikachu, Minions, Elsa from Frozen...and Donald Trump.
Donald Trump pinata
Jessica: a piñata is not an effigy—we Mexicans burn them. Buying a piñata doesn't signify our hatred toward the character or person represented by a piñata, unless you think us Mexicans think SpongeBob SquarePants is the Hitler of Mexico. There is nothing violent about piñata culture, save for that kid who always swings wildly and accidentally hits the fat prima. Trump piñatas are simply that—Trump piñatas—and the more they're stuffed with Tomys and Mazapanes, the better.
Readers: the above is simple enough, right? So why is it that for the Register, Mexicans with sticks around a piñata are just as dangerous as narcos with cuernos de chivo? Why does Kwong use such aggro, over-the-top terms as "violent" and "destruction" to describe the simple act of kids going to school on a piñata? Why did Kwong say "adults...allowed" kids to have fun, as if the adults were guilty of encouraging assault? Why write that a rally was peaceful except for kids being kids—why you criminalizing our youth, Jessica? Why did Kwong include a wacky quote of some loser says hitting piñatas—which happens every weekend at backyard and park birthday parties, without comment by the Reg—is somehow "sending the wrong message"? What's the "right" message at a piñata party—handing out bags of candy, like they do at gabacho parties?
Even more disgustingly, Kwong tweeted on May 1 about a boy "beheading" a Trump piñata.
This isn't the first time that Register reporters and other similar losers have tried to demonize Mexicans and their Trump piñatas. Consider the following dispatch from our story last year about what happened when our former intern took a Trump piñata to a Trump rally at the Anaheim Convention Center:
KFI-AM 604 morons John and Ken said our"beheading" of the Trump piñata was "ISIS-inspired"—never mind those assholes had a whole campaign back in 2009 titled "Head on a Stick" where they had thousands of people chant that at rallies from Fullerton to Corona, and had graphics on their website of bloody heads on pikes (and let's not forget the gross sound graphic they'd gleefully play on the air of putting a new head on a stick—we don't forget, cabrones). Meanwhile, Orange County Register reporter Chris Haire tweeted that a "Trump piñata...got decapitated," a line that made it into the paper's final story, which said "at least one Donald Trump piñata was decapitated and its head used as a makeshift soccer ball," making it seem as if there was an army of Mexican beheaders destroying poor Trump piñatas and doing stuff narcos do.
Our Trump piñata head perched on a Mexican flag!
Photo by Gabriel San Roman/OC Weekly
Such language is just catnip to the Reg's aging, racist readership, and shame on the Register for indulging in their RAHOWA fantasies. I complained to editor Todd Harmonson—a good guy—about the paper's piñata coverage in May, but he offered little in terms of an explanation. So I'll repeat my complaint here: Todd, anti-piñata language is beneath your paper...but obviously not beneath Kwong, who never met a SanTana Mexican activist or progressive cause she didn't immediately want to smear.