Last week I received an email from an individual that reminded me that I had promised anonymity. The individual wanted to reason with me about what topics I write about on my blog. I responded to the individual and let them know that I would honor their request to remain anonymous but that I reserved the right to write about our online conversation. The writer agreed.
The author’s original email let me know that my blog is counterproductive to the work many individuals in El Paso are doing to “get rid of the progressives” in elected officials. The writer wrote that I should get with the “game plan” and focus on ridding the city of the people who are hurting it. The writer wrote that when I write “attack” pieces against politicians like Oscar Leeser that I “loose readership” on my blog. The author went on to add that instead of “ousting” the progressives I empower them when I focus on the “good guys”.
The writer added that when I wrote about Aliana Apodaca’s campaign manager’s troubles or about her campaign filings I should have instead focused on the numerous problems with Veronica Escobar. Writing about Aliana Apodaca was only helping Veronica Escobar, “didn’t I see that”, the writer asked.
I responded to the reader that I believed they misunderstood the reasons for my writing. I wrote that although there are many factors that drive my blogging the bottom line is that the hypocrisy I see in El Paso. That is the real impetus for my blogs. I could give the writer and you many reasons for why I write because each of those reasons have different impacts on what topics I choose to write about at the time however the bottom line is the hypocrisy of the powers-that-be in El Paso that ultimately makes me write.
I explained that “ousting” the progressives is not the goal of my blogging. I added that it is not the progressive nature of the political faction that I find distasteful but rather the hypocrisy exhibited by them by how they ignore corruption within their ranks to ensure the victory of their public policy agenda. I wrote; whether I agree with the public policy agenda is immaterial because the way they have implemented it has been corrupt, in my view.
The writer countered my explanation by responding, “then why not focus on them and stop writing about the mayor”. I responded that I could not complain about the hypocrisy of one side and ignore the other because to do so would also make me a hypocrite. The writer responded that I was missing the “larger picture”. According to the writer, the “larger picture” was bringing back a business centric government to El Paso in order to stabilize the city’s economy. As an example, the author wrote that “our group” does not necessarily agree with Lily Limon however she is “much better than the alternative”. The writer added, “or would you rather have Steve Ortega in office instead?” [emphasis mine]
In my response I explained to the reader that it wasn’t about whether Steve Ortega is better or worse than Oscar Leeser or Limon, but rather, in this case, it is about the taxpayers of the community. I explained that during the mayoral election the only choice was between someone that I felt was beholden to the powers that were behind the baseball stadium scam or someone that appeared to have some independence from that. That doesn’t mean I am going to ignore the failures that I see in Oscar Leeser, I wrote back.
“You could be one of the voices” for getting rid of the progressives, retorted the writer, “but only if you get with the game plan.” “I can’t support you or continue to read your blog” if you don’t get with the game plan the writer concluded.
Therein lies the crux of why El Paso continues to stagnate and why I write. Instead of looking for better governance, many individuals choose political factions and embrace those that attack the opposing factions and decry when their champions are pointed out for their failures.
I have clearly laid out my agenda and motivation for writing my blog before. I see El Paso from the perspective of someone who clearly understands that El Paso’s economy is clearly tied to Cd. Juárez yet many in El Paso pretend that Juárez and México are the reasons for the failure of El Paso. I understand that there are many executives in El Paso that understand this however although they benefit from it they remain silent or are the vocal minority.
I, on the other hand, used to be one of those that crossed the border daily to spend my hard-earned Pesos in the El Paso economy only to be made fun of for daring to drive my FrontChih plated vehicle on the El Paso taxpayer-funded roads. That was after being singled out by customs officials and El Paso police officers for fitting a profile that was just too Mexican for some. However small my contribution to the El Paso economy was in taxes and employing El Pasoans it was never enough to drop the Mexican stigma imposed by El Pasoans. That was because I am a proud Mexican. It took time to understand the animosity but eventually I settled on hypocrisy.
This hypocrisy is engrained in most aspects of the El Paso elite. This is why El Paso is uniquely always comparing itself to other cities trying to emulate them. Whether it is the progressives or the “good guys”, the mantra is always – if we could just be like, or if only we had what other cities have.
How about just a simple – let’s just be El Paso?
The problem with that is being El Paso requires embracing Cd. Juárez as an integral part of the culture and the economy that makes El Paso. That will never happen and therein is the hypocrisy that defines El Paso.
I realize that every one of my blog pieces will anger some, annoy others and infuriate those that don’t like the truth. Some of you like what I write. All of my readers are important to me, though, as this is what a blogger wants, someone to read what they write. I do not like losing readers however; I cannot stop writing about the hypocrisy I see. I hope that the author of the email will enjoy the pieces that support the “game plan” while ignoring those that don’t. Either way, I will continue to write and I look forward to the comments from my readers.