New Mexico Latina Legislator: Mexican American Studies Banned Books Are “Extremely Racist”

Mar 13, 2013
10:41 AM

This one comes from HuffPost Latino Voices:


New Mexico State Representative Nora Espinoza

A New Mexico state representative wants to keep Hispanic history books out of public schools, following in the footsteps of some of her conservative colleagues in Arizona.

New Mexico state Rep. Antonio Maestas (D-Albuquerque) proposed a memorial on Monday praising diversity in the state’s curricula and slammed Tucson’s decision to ban seven ethnic studies books from classroom use.

That didn’t go over well with Republican state Rep. Nora Espinoza (Roswell).

The memorial —New Mexico’s version of a resolution— calls for the state’s school curricula to reflect “a spirit of acceptance and a celebration of different cultures and beliefs,” and encourages the support for the seven books and any others “that encourage New Mexicans to understand their cultural history while empowering a generation of youth who are proud of their heritage.”

Espinoza, a conservative legislator who is herself Hispanic, went off on a rant against the Latino intellectuals whose books were banished, saying they don’t belong in New Mexico schools.

Espinoza read out loud before the state House Education Committee one of Corky Gonzalez’s poems that contained the sentence “my culture was raped,” and implied the metaphor was not appropriate for young minds.

“These are are extremely racist and hate books,” Espinoza said, according to the report from KRQE. She did not return phone calls or an email asking for comment.

You can read the rest of the story at HuffPost Latino Voices.