How satire is used by Jimmy Santigo Baca and Pat Parker in two poems to try and deflate the sterotypes that "white Americans" have about African-Americans and Mexican-Americans.

Essay by dramachrisCollege, UndergraduateA+, April 2003

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Although we have come a long way from the days of slavery, racial equality is still far from prevalent in American society. Some people still have a hard time accepting people of other races as "true Americans" and stereotypes which reduce people to the color of their skin still remain in people's minds. Jimmy Santiago Baca's poem "So Mexicans Are Taking Jobs from Americans" and Pat Parker's poem "For the white person who wants to know how to be my friend" both satirize some stereotypical views while also making valid points about the lack of equality that exists between "Americans".

Americans fear the concept of losing jobs to minority workers; some even go so far as to think these jobs are being stolen from them. In "So Mexicans Are Taking Jobs from Americans", Jimmy Santiago Baca sets out to disprove this paranoid notion by mocking some Mexican stereotypes people have.

He also presents a view that Americans are reluctant to give people of less than privileged cultures a chance to make a living.

In the first five lines of the poem, Baca paints a picture of the stereotypical Mexican "bandito" riding up on horseback, brandishing a rifle and holding up a "gringo" as if they were they were holding up a stagecoach from the old west. A few lines down, Baca presents the image of a Mexican who sneaks into a city at night and mugs someone at knifepoint saying they want the victim's job. Baca says he has tried to find these "fighters", but has come up empty-handed. Any intelligent individual should note that these scenarios that Baca presents are exaggerated mockeries of stereotypes that some Americans have created about Mexicans. It is not very feasible, nor very sensible to believe that anyone would demand someone's job by...