Dee Dee García Blase, the moderate-right Sarah Palin of Southwest Latino activism, has been on a bizarre campaign against Sergio G. García, an undocumented immigrant recently granted the right to practice law in California. It turns out that García, who reportedly arrived in the US 20 years ago to pick almonds with his father, is a bit of a diva. According to his own website, García “Personal Appearance Standard Agreement” demands a $25,000 fee, “one half payable prior performance and one half upon complete,” as well as a requirement of first class airline travel.
Of course it’s advisable to temper one’s judgement when you consider the source of this invective. García-Blase is a relatively obscure media creation who describes herself as “the Foundress and immediate past Co-President of the National Tequila Party Movement which is a woman-led political movement that pushes for immigrant friendly policies and is a national Latino Get Out the Vote Effort motivating Latinos to vote for pro-immigrant politicians in 2012.” The National Tequila Party has been renamed as Somos Independents, “a movement consisting of Independents, Progressive Democrats, Moderate Republicans and Libertarians.” Seems like García Blase knows a thing or two about fusion voting she might want to share with the Working Families Party.
Blase García is also not shy about posting photos of herself as an Arizona Cardinals fan and unabashed puro smoker, but hey, what would Frida do? Hopefully she’s had time to reassess her suggestion on a televised panel that unemployment insurance recipients should be shipped to Yuma, Arizona to pick lettuce. Once affiliated with Somos Republicans, we’re glad to see her tent is now open to “Progressive Democrats.”
Of course García Blase’s rants could be seen as just plain jealousy of someone like Sergio G. García getting more press than she does, but, hey, his demands do seem a bit on the pretentious side. It’s possible that he is facing enormous legal bills over his four-year fight to be allowed to practice, but first-class air travel? Three-star plus hotel accommodations? What would César Chávez do? I guess I forget that growing up picking almonds can drive one to want everything that one is entitled to when one’s American DREAM is fulfilled. Everything. The hotels. The complimentary meals. The hospitality chocolates. Vegas.
I know I really blew it by not going to law school, but maybe there’s still time for me to fit into this scenario of Latin@ awareness and activism. I’ve got an idea. I’ve put in my 20 + years of being a journalist and educator and publishing books and being a gadfly and all that. Here’s a one-time offer for everyone. For just $10,000, less than half of what Sergio G. García wants, I’ll have lunch with you and tell you everything. How I got started. How I survived in the competitive world of alternative journalism. What being Latin@ and the rest of it means to me. My workout regimen and diet. How I’ve managed to stay relevant and keep writing despite never having charged $10,000 for lunch with me.
What do you say?