Adhering to a hyper-leftist agenda is not paying dividends, so of course, the Democrats continue to enforce those standards.
With the full realization that there is little in front of me but treachery in an attempt to address race and our newly formed social constructs, I will bravely attempt to pogo stick through the minefield of race and equity. It was years ago when the new term “LatinX” appeared on our cultural radars. Springing out of the mushrooming gender assignation debate, the various sub-groups which were intent on changing our language for their agendas ran into a linguistic quagmire.
It soon became apparent that Spanish, the romance language that it is, had a built-in offense within its lexicon. Nouns in the verbiage have a male or female designation, and this carries with it problematics for those folks who were intent of expunging gender from speech. Whether it was the forcing of “correct” pronouns such as ze/zir/zirs, or creating new words entirely like “cisnet” and “maverique,” there was this issue with the Spanish language being defiantly gendered.
This was when the new term was coined, since a male or female of Hispanic origin was referred to as either Latino or Latina. In the ensuing years challenges emerged. For starters, if one were to adhere to this new LatinX variation, it should carry over to the entire language, leading to countless roadblocks. If a LatinX individual were to check out a book, they would go to the “bibliotecx” to check out a “librx”.
One other issue has been shown – the Spanish culture has no interest in it. Joe Cunningham detailed this reality, and it is for this reason that the insistence by many Democrats to use LatinX in reference to their Hispanic voters has been baffling. As Joe noted, the payoff on this supposed outreach is one of diminishing returns. In order to cater to the scant percentage who might prefer the use of LatinX, significantly more are not only resistant to the use but offended by it.
I have a podcast co-host of Puerto Rican extraction and she has confirmed this is a certainty. (Follow the brilliant and hilarious @AggieRican on Twitter; she is an undiluted joy.) We frequently address matters such as this, as well as my using her as a sounding board on issues concerning Hispanic culture. She has said how she has yet to meet any Spanish speakers who embrace the term; her experiences have been strictly befuddlement or hostility. No one in the Latin communities is being catered to in a definable fashion.
This follows suit with many other pratfalls the Democratic Party has made with Hispanic voters the past few years. In my state of Florida, I have been watching a number of shifts taking place with this voting segment of the electorate, something reflected nationwide as the Republicans have been making steady gains with Latino voters the past few elections. Democrats have shown an inability or an unwillingness to court the Hispanic voter of late, and this has cost them at the polls.
In the 2020 election, Florida saw a deepening of the red state, and Donald Trump shocked many by nearly equalling Joe Biden among Hispanic voters in Miami-Dade County. This was a jarring result for Democrats, but not a surprising one. Joe Biden’s campaign was completely negligent with the Democrat Party in this state, specifically in South Florida where the campaign failed to deliver Spanish-speaking support and party leaders in the region declared the campaign was suppressing the Latino vote.
Despite this obvious sabotage by the Biden camp, there was the voicing of surprise when polling showed surprisingly strong support for Donald Trump just a couple of weeks ahead of the election. In a desperate dose of delusion, the campaign experts decided to lay the blame for tilted numbers on Q-anon infecting Spanish radio broadcasts with disinformation. This is another sign of how the Democrats have an almost dismissive approach to Hispanics. They count on them, but they do not court them.
While Jeff Charles is correct in saying the GOP should act on this, I would say they have been for some time already. The difference is the Republicans are not prone to get out and posture as loudly about their actions on behalf of particular ethnicities. Another factor — the press is far less inclined to highlight when the GOP makes a positive impression with a particular voting group.
I noted this very reality years back when Florida saw an influx of Puerto Rican residents, following the devastation of Hurricane Maria. Some were suggesting that the new arrivals would tilt the state blue, such as the current fixture at The Lincoln Project, Rick Wilson. “If you put an influx of 100,000 Puerto Ricans who vote Democratic eight times out of 10 in the Orlando area, there you go,” Wilson told The Washington Post. “Nobody can afford a big change in the registration pattern or a change in the voting pattern that offsets Florida’s narrowness. You could end up with a big advantage for Democrats in 2018 if they play it right.”
I countered at the time by noting that the wave was not novel. Many residents had been fleeing the island’s economic morass for years already, and the dividends had been minimal for the Democrats because those transplants were registering as Independents, and many fostered a leery approach to the party that ran their economy so poorly they were inspired to leave. Hillary failed to take the state in 2016, and after the hurricane, many of those residents relocated to the Orlando area, the stronghold of Senator Bill Nelson.
Nelson lost his reelection bid, giving Florida two GOP senators for the first time since the 1800s.
This has been the pattern with Democrats and Hispanics for years now. While the party feels as if the Hispanic vote is theirs the effort is more of one of entitlement, rather than earned. The curiosity is that the approach by the party is not one of pandering but doing things by rote. This insistence that Hispanic voters want the LantinX term applied to them defies measurable results.
Politico’s Marc Caputo referenced a poll last year showing how little the Florida contingent of Spanish heritage voters thought of the term. You would think this is the kind of data to which a party in need of help would pay close attention.
Finally, some #s on what (Florida) Hispanics think about what label they prefer
69% prefer Hispanic
23% prefer Latino
9% no preference
1% prefer Latinx
(From a poll of 800 Florida Democratic Hispanics voters privately shared w/me. Wish I could share the other #s lol)
— Marc Caputo (@MarcACaputo) March 9, 2020
This follows national trends. The polling firm Equis Research asked people of this voting block, from a number of Hispanic-rich states, which terms they had a preference for in describing themselves. In every instance, Hispanic/Latino/Latina was preferred by a minimum of 70%, with no state registering higher than 3% supporting LatinX.
And as Politico noted in its own recent poll, it is more than preferring to not use the term. Hispanics-Latinos take umbrage at the use of LatinX, to the extent that it can adversely affect their impression of a politician.
More problematic for Democrats: 40 percent said Latinx bothers or offends them to some degree and 30 percent said they would be less likely to support a politician or organization that uses the term.
This is beginning to show the signs of wear with the Democratic Party methodology. The Dems have long counted on minority voters to be theirs, almost exclusively. Probably too long. There is a tendency to not do the necessary work to earn the support of the voters in this demographic. By foisting a new term on a culture they show some basic ignorance; by refusing to listen to the people, or looking at the polls showing the adverse result of this move they show basic indolence.
This kind of thinking will only exacerbate what is showing to be a deeply problematic 2022 election for the Democratic Party.