Isabel’s Coca-Cola Response

The below post is a response to my previous article about the “It’s Beautiful” Coca-Cola commercial. Isabel Otero, a high school chum and peer of mine, left a comment on that post. I felt that Isabel’s voice, especially on a matter of which she has personal experience as a Puerto Rican American, deserved to be a post in its own right. Below are her words. 

Gracias por compartir tu perspectiva, Rob. Como te prometí, aquí va la mía:

I find this backlash fascinating as well. I think it’s mostly bigotry, but I also think it is a reaction to a loss of perceived power or identity. The white majority of this country does not all react this way, but the loud and hilariously ignorant minority of people, like the Connie Chastains of the internet netherworld, they get the stupid spotlight every time. There were just as many happy tweets and comments about this commercial. It was heart-warming and it represented many of Coca-Cola’s customers – because let’s not forget that this is a company, interested in making money. Coke isn’t going to adhere to the bullshit that e-idiots spew because it’s bad for business, and it alienates large swaths of their customer base.

I read Ms. Chastain’s silly blog post, and I laughed at the comments. What was it, oh right: “foul, filthy, and grotesque advertisement” that was my favorite line. This is what losing your perceived power looks like. This is what losing your perceived culture looks like. It’s as if these silly people have never encountered a person that looks or sounds different from them – and their appearance on a commercial has rocked their very existence. This simple ad somehow points to a larger conspiracy against their majority-ness, which is just bizarre. The last person I knew with a persecution complex went to a mental hospital, and that’s not hyperbole. I know many Southerners, and I have never found any to be so shaken by soda ads. Very entertaining.

Lately, I’ve began to take issue with the descriptor of “melting-pot.” I think this country is more like stew, some things become homogeneous but you can still see various parts. I am a great example of this process. I left Puerto Rico with whatever culture I knew at that time. Culture obviously keeps going on a continuum, so I preserved only that which I could experience. When I return to Puerto Rico, it’s alarmingly clear that I no longer fit in completely because after 1 year in Florida, 11 years in Georgia, and 3.5 in the DC area –I have acquired and added to my cultural arsenal things that don’t only fit my previous identity. Culture doesn’t stop moving, and people don’t stop growing and evolving within it – though a good argument could be made for lack of growth and evolution when looking at the passé lily white view of the past that people like Ms. Chastain and her peers exhibit.

I have proudly added to my cultural background, and I suspect all of the people represented by that commercial feel the same. America has a culture, but depending on the day the hour the geographic location you’ll get a different answer – and that’s the point. If anything, we can claim simple ol’ consumerism as our culture. We come together over the things we collectively like and consume like simple Coca-Cola.

The good thing is that these folks will slowly go away, and will slowly find that the backlash against their hatred is much more powerful than their original complaining. I mean, get a clue folks, not hours after you started complaining did you all become e-puns, buzzfeed fodder, and the bud of jokes for all kinds of people –the blue staters, red staters, southerners and scallywags – we all found you hilarious. It’s hard to be offended by people for which we feel sorry.

The only thing I know for certain is that patriotism comes in many forms, none of which can be seen or experienced on Southern Un-Heritage Blogs, like Ms. Chastain’s.

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74 thoughts on “Isabel’s Coca-Cola Response

  1. Excellent comment! I think the concept of a melting pot is a wonderful one, but one that has not been fully realized yet. We are working on it, but some folks resist the concept for their own reasons. Bigotry and racism now belong to the minority who can only squawk loudly over their loss of power. We are fulfilling the ideas and principles put forth in the American Revolution of a nation and people who are equal. We are not there yet, but we are working on it.

    1. I have more of a cynical approach to the ideas of bigotry and racism. I feel like it is a cultural baggage that consciously we attempt to suppress because it is the right thing to do. I wonder if humanity can ever really escape it.

    2. Isabel

      I agree with you both. I think bigotry and racism these days is far more subtle, unless you prowl the netherworld. I always thought identity was a strong concept, but I have come to find that it’s rather fragile and if you’re not fully prepared — whether through your faith, ideology, or family — to weather the shocks that come from other groups asserting their power or asking you to relinquish yours, you just devolve to a pile of angry bitchy children (RE: Ms. Chastain’s Blog). The point that these folks miss is I am as much a part of the country’s Southern Heritage as them, and that my existence and identity does not negate theirs. I don’t need them to stop being Southerners or White, but I need them to treat my identity as a real/valid one and respect it. Just is apparently harder than it seems…

  2. You make a big deal about your race nad seem to support your heritage , why shouldn’t I?

    “The only thing I know for certain is that patriotism comes in many forms, none of which can be seen or experienced on Southern Un-Heritage Blogs, like Ms. Chastain’s”.

    Really?? I have a Southern Heritage website, Southern Heritage Advancement Preservation and Education. Does that meanI cannot be patrotic?

    George Purvis

      1. Really. So you don’t believe in freedom of speech? How patrotic is that? What branch of service did you serve in.? How about your ancestor in the WBTS? What unit was he in???

        As to Southern Heritage– I think my family has paid the price for me to say what I want about the United States. If you agree or not with with what I say, it really doesn’t matter to me. I know the truth hurts you neo- yankees and you fight tooth and nail to be right, but what historical baggage this country carries does not belong solely on the backs of the Southern people

        1. George,

          This post is not about your rants or the Civil War, or your’s or mine history of family military service. No where in the post does it attack the South as a whole. The comments are directed towards Connie Chastain for her bigoted comments. I will not approve any more of your posts off topic.

          1. “The only thing I know for certain is that patriotism comes in many forms, none of which can be seen or experienced on Southern Un-Heritage Blogs, like Ms. Chastain’s’

            Close enough for me.

            Didn’t serve huh? Just admit it .

          2. Correct.

            Southern Un-Heritage Blogs, like Ms. Chastain’s.

            Can’t get any more clearer than that.

            Why should I serve George? What purpose does that serve?

          3. Patriotism. Fighting for your country and all that.

            I just noticed you didn’t answer my question or I didn’t form it right but do you believe in in the right of free speech. Does that just apply to the people and subjects you agree with?

          4. So patriotism is limited by whether or not one “fights for their country”?

            I ignored the question, because I never said, I never referenced it, and it’s a moot point.

          5. George, if you are going to call someone “stupid,” then perhaps you should use proper grammar and punctuation to make your case. Let’s look at your sentence.

            It is only astupid [sic] statement to stupid people. Whats [sic] the problem with you serving scared??? [sic]

            Huh? I don’t know what the problem is with me serving scared? Is there a problem with me serving scared? I’m certain if I served scared, I would not be a very good soldier.

            Oh, you probably meant something like this: “It is only [a] stupid statement to stupid people. [What’s] the problem with you serving? [Are you] scared?”

            Well, that makes more sense. I probably should not have approved this comment, since you asserting that someone is stupid. I guess I’ll make an exception this time. There is no problem. Do you think there is a problem? No, I’m not scared. I played around with the idea several times over, but I was ultimately drawn down a different path. I have no family heritage of military service. The majority of my family military history is a story of conscription and militia service. So what exactly is there to compel me to serve? For that matter, what exactly am I serving?

          6. If you are going to call my statements stupid then I shall return the insult to you. Seems to me the proper thing to do would be just not insult. Do you agree?

            “I have no family heritage of military service. The majority of my family military history is a story of conscription and militia service.”
            But you feel you have the right to twist history and tell lies about why may served. You made the statement my heritage was good for nothing but to be insulted and your family HAS NOT SERVED. Makes good sense to me

            “So what exactly is there to compel me to serve?”So why not? You know there are many fields open that keeps a person out of combat. I know I was grateful to the medics that came to help me. No I was not injured in combat. And save your meaningless statement ‘thank you for your service” I just don’t need it.

          7. If the statement is stupid, I shall call it such. Calling something a stupid statement is not the same as calling someone a stupid person.

            Point out where I have “twist[ed] history” and “[told] lies”.

            Oooh, case in point. You just quoted me in saying my families history is one of “conscription and militia.” Then you go on to say my family “HAS NOT SERVED.” That, right there George, is a stupid statement.

            Notice you didn’t answer the question.

          8. I think it is really funny that George puts the service issue in there. That’s going to bite him in the kiester. Unfortunately for George, military service is nothing special when it comes to matters like these. There are just as many liberals in the service as conservatives.

          9. Well I served the CIC, and the people of the United states. I served the weak, those that were ailing, the cowards and yes those who hated me because of the uniform I wore. I served in the tradition of those who came before me and those who will come after me.

            Thought you had me did you?

          10. Like I said, this is going to bite you in the kiester, George. I have more time in the US military than you do. So if you want to go by service, you fail just like you fail in proving your lies.

          11. What’s the matter, George? Can’t handle the fact that your service time is minute compared to mine? You tried to wrap yourself in the flag you hate and make that seem like it meant something. Now you find out that I served as well, plus served longer, and outranked you as well. Isn’t that just galling?

            What’s next George? What are you going to come up with next to try to show how American you are compared to others? Want to go with ancestors? Mine were here before yours.

    1. [Comment Not Approved: Off Topic]

      I hate to crack down on ya Jimmy, but if I give you free reign, then Georgey is going to get all upset. Let’s stick to the issue at hand.

  3. Isabel

    Hi Mr. Purvis, I think I remember you – though, I must say not well. So, I’ll take the things I understand and try to answer them more clearly. I thought I was, at least for the most part, writing in understandable American English. Which is my second language (BOO!), so maybe there’s room for confusion…
    You asked if I was saying that something – unclear what – will be “realized when there are no more whites in the country?” Followed up by a classy, “do you truly hate the white race?” And finally, asked if I needed you to name any more bigots. I suspect that you are assuming that my post means that the realization of less bigoted complaining by angry bitchy children is only going to be realized if there are no more white people. Not sure what gave you that idea, but basically no. I started the comment by saying that most of the white majority of people do not react in the way Ms. Chastain and her peers did. I don’t think that I need there to be less white people. I need there to be less bigoted people. It just so happens that Ms. Chastain and her peers are white – and are specifically complaining about the lack of whiteness or (their view of) American-ness in this ad. Next, I do not truly hate the white race. I don’t think there is such a thing as a “white” race. I think that’s a cultural and social manifestation that helps us understand our wolrd, but as far as I can tell there is only the human race. ZERO about your skin color makes us different – your lack of education or maybe understanding of grammar, that sets us a bit apart though. Oh, and finally, no I don’t need you to point out more bigots – I know enough of them. I am also able to recognize some – I mean, you’re here, right?
    I don’t think I made a big deal about my heritage, but I did use it as an example. I also don’t think you are characterizing “your” heritage very well. I am part of Southern Heritage. I am a Southerner in many ways. I also just happen to be Hispanic, Puerto Rican etc. You’re welcome to make a big deal about your Heritage, but I certainly don’t have to agree with how you are portraying that which we share – much to your chagrin.

    No, you cannot be considered patriotic if you are going around the internet spewing vile like Ms. Chastain. Maybe you don’t know what it means, but I’m sure Google can help you out. Your website is for the advancement of a nation conquered and no longer in existence.
    Neither myself nor Rob have to have served in any military branch to be patriotic. Frankly, dealing with you lot and your bullshit should be cause for a medal – but I don’t make the rules. Rob studies history and teaches our country’s youth. That’s a person that is patriotic. That’s a person worth celebrating in the same way that we celebrate our military service men and women. Also, I’d garner a guess that you probably don’t feel the same about a Black WOMAN who serves the country or a TRANSGENDERED MAN who serves. I’m sure you’ll take issue, but like has been well-established by your blog and others – you’re not in it for the truth or the facts or empathy – you only need your truthiness.

    The Historical Baggage would be left at the door, but guess what type of people bring it back time and again? You and your friends. This blog is not about bringing up historical baggage, but rather about acknowledging that there are other people that can be considered Americans, and that YOU and YOUR FRIENDS don’t get to define that shit.
    You all have every right to spew your bullshit across the internet, and frankly – so do we. Though, I’d bet that most reasonable human beings would count what we say as credible perspective and count what you say as less than fanatical crap. So, if YOU don’t like it – you’re free to go on your merry way and count us as part of the neo-yankee conspiracy against you. I’m perfectly fine with it myself.

    1. Long winded ain’t you? You only have a couple of comments worth replying to so let’s get started.

      Yes I remember you. You were the person whom Rod hid behind when he wanted to attack me.
      On the issue of immigration – http://www.truthorfiction.com/rumors/m/montebello-flag.htm
      That pretty much says it all.
      “asked if I needed you to name any more bigots need there to be less bigoted people.”
      A good place to start would be with You, Rod Baker, Al, Mackey, Jimmy Dick, Andy Hall, Brooks Simpson and possibly Corey Meyers.

      “It just so happens that Ms. Chastain and her peers are white – and are specifically complaining about the lack of whiteness”
      It is the right of Miss Chastain to complain about the ad. That right is called freedom of speech. The fact that you call her and her peers a bigot is wrong on so many levels, especially since we can look at other races in this country and see how they get preferred treatment. Take for instance Black History Month. I believe Cinco de Mayo is covered in the link above
      “your lack of education or maybe understanding of grammar, that sets us a bit apart though.’
      Yes I know your greatness shines through, I was sure if I am supposed to kiss your feet or just simply bow down. Now what I lack in formal education, I more than make up in my own research. This fact is supported by the posts of all those good folks I mentioned above, who in their best efforts of spinning the truth, insults and outright lies cannot prove me wrong. [Edit: Off Topic]
      “No, you cannot be considered patriotic if you are going around the internet spewing vile like Ms. Chastain. Your website is for the advancement of a nation conquered and no longer in existence.”

      What vile have I spewed? You may not agree with me as to historical fact but what vile have I spewed? As to SHAPE you read the whole website amazing. You are truly great!!! Not one other person on this planet could have read that website in the time you did. Good job I am impressed. The fact the Confederacy lost and no longer exists doesn’t mean we should change history does it? The Roman Empire no longer exists but we still study that period in history. Dinosaurs no longer live so why study that period? Tell me exactly what is wrong with the fact I post historical fact. Are you trying to tell me that I have no right to honor my ancestors and the truth about cause in which they fought? I have no right to honor their sacrifice and their bravery? Who do you think you are to tell me what rights I have?
      Rob studies history and teaches our country’s youth. That’s a person that is patriotic. Also, I’d garner a guess that you probably don’t feel the same about a Black WOMAN who serves the country or a TRANSGENDERED MAN who serves
      Rob, like Dick is a joke. Neither of them can make a factual argument without the help of someone else. If Rob is patriotic in that respect then so am I. The fact the two of you didn’t serve just proves you have less skin in the game so to speak. The Black woman or transgender man who serves is fine with me. They serve that is more than you and Rob did. Making statements like you have just made only serves to prove your bigotry.
      “The Historical Baggage would be left at the door, but guess what type of people bring it back time and again?”

      In the next couple of days I am going to make a post to Cold Southern Steel for the purpose of addressing this statement. At this time let me just say this, since you zipped through the SHAPE website in record time, how about you do this, take the blogs of any of those people I mentioned about and go through their archives. It should take you more than twenty minutes; note that each and everyone one of them trolls the web in search of southern people or events to attack.

      Oh I have not been to Puerto Rico. Know a ton of service men that have been to San Juan. They all say that place is a dump is that true? They even have a special name for but you and you delicate felling would find it insulting.

      1. Isabel

        Hello again, Jorge! Que bueno ver tus estupideces hoy!
        I’m shocked you believe in Dinosaurs.
        I personally don’t think patriotism is that big a virtue. I also don’t think serving in the military makes anyone better or less better than a civilian. You can keep bringing up that point as if you’re hurting my feelings, but I don’t care to be in a military career. I don’t always agree with my country – that’s patriotism.
        Tú eres un viejo amargado porque estás perdiendo lo que crees que es tu poder sobre otras personas. No me quitan el sueño tus malas crianzas. Yo no tengo mucha paciencia para personas como tú. No me importa lo que digas de mi isla y me importa menos lo que piensas de mi porque de veras eres solamente un imbécil – y si tiro una peceta le doy a muchos más. Hoy es viernes, no hay mucho que hacer en el trabajo y yo encuentro tus estupideces tan chistosas que te sigo hablando. “Vete-pal’-carajo-carbón!” Estoy casi segura que eso te dirían a ti por ser pendejo, pero a mí me darían arroz con gandules y lechón frito después de un abrazo. Sabes porque la isla está en esa situación, es en parte por ser colonia de los E.E. U.U. Yo creo que como buena Boricua te dejo tranquilito, porque no creo que puedas pensar mucho más de lo que has hecho en estos últimos días. Me imagino que estas cansado de dar perretas, y si no, yo estoy súper cansada de que las des. Has me el favor, deja de avergonzarte no te queda bien el llanto. Hasta luego, y sigue comiendo mierda con los tuyos – que los míos ya mismo serán tu presidente o peor…

  4. Isabel

    I didn’t have my phone with me during the day which allowed me to let my mind wander. And I thought of an ironic thing related to this ad. I’m going to speak in generalizations here, but I mostly mean white people like George and Connie… which have a weird chip on their shoulder about the world.

    The irony here is that I would say the majority of media, books, commercials, tv shows, basically in most forms of communication white people are well represented. So well represented that the absence of their whiteness creates this weird moment where some white folks feel the need to point it out. While pointing this out, said white people (in this case, really) have used words that are used usually by minorities to point out white privilege in society. So here, George managed to use the word tolerance — though he used it in the wrong way — he sees this as an injustice, and has been taught, directly or indirectly, that he is justified in his outrage because most of the time whiteness is represented in many forms — so why would anyone choose to purposely leave it out!? Outrage! So white folks get to use the words racist, bigoted, hatred in a context where none of it is happening, but it “feels” like it because they are maybe so used to feeling represented that they don’t realize it’s to the point leaving out huge chunks of humanity…

    Maybe I’m wrong, but I think this may be playing into the reaction from people that somehow feel left out of progress…progress they reject. I mean, George and Connie, are walking contradictions right now. On the one hand they’re all, “be my kind of American!” and on the other they’re all, “Confederacy doesn’t exist except in my mind! F#$@ the Union!”

    It’s bizarre all around…

    1. “So here, George managed to use the word tolerance — though he used it in the wrong way — he sees this as an injustice, and has been taught, directly or indirectly, that he is justified in his outrage becausemost of the time whiteness is represented in many forms — so why would anyone choose to purposely leave it out!?”

      gee with your superoior education and your shining greatness you should be able to understand exactly I meant.

      1. Isabel

        Don’t flatter yourself Jorge. I can barely understand what you write, and I am well-educated. I think that you have NEVER in your life reflected on why you react or feel a certain way, and it’s just not my place to figure that out for you. I am mainly making a broader point, and it wasn’t just for you as an audience.

        1. Your highness please grated me your most gracious tolerence and pardon my ignorance. for I did not realize to whom I speak..

          Oh as to the balck woman and the trannie in service. Rather have those two beside me in a good fight than a dozen from Pureto Rico.

          1. Here are five Americans of Puerto Rican descent I would rather have next to me than George Purvis:
            PRIVATE FIRST CLASS FERNANDO L. GARCIA
            Rank and organization:Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps, Company I, 3d Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.).
            Place and date: Korea, 5 September 1952.
            Entered service at:San Juan, P.R.
            Born:14 October 1929, Utuado, Puerto Rico
            Citation:
            For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a member of Company I, Third Battalion, Fifth Marines, First Marine Division (Reinforced), in action against enemy aggressor forces in Korea on September 5, 1952. While participating in the defense of a combat outpost located more than one mile forward of the main line of resistance during a savage night attack by a fanatical enemy force employing grenades, mortars and artillery, Private First Class Garcia, although suffering painful wounds, moved through the intense hail of hostile fire to a supply point to secure more hand grenades. Quick to act when a hostile grenade landed nearby, endangering the life of another Marine, as well as his own, he unhesitatingly chose to sacrifice himself and immediately threw his body upon the deadly missile, receiving the full impact of the explosion. His great personal valor and cool decision in the face of almost certain death sustain and enhance the finest traditions of the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.
            In memory:
            PFC Fernando Luis Garcia’s remains were never recovered. There is a headstone with Garcia’s name in the Puerto Rico National Cemetery in the city of Bayamon, Puerto Rico.
            ————————————————————–
            LOZADA, CARLOS JAMES
            Rank and organization:Private First Class, U.S. Army, Company A, 2d Battalion, 503d Infantry, 173d Airborne Brigade
            Place and date:Dak To, Republic of Vietnam, 20 November 1967.
            Entered service at: New York, N.Y.
            Born:6 September 1946, Caguas, Puerto Rico.
            Citation:
            For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Pfc. Lozada, U.S. Army, distinguished himself at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty in the battle of Dak To. While serving as a machine gunner with 1st platoon, Company A, Pfc. Lozada was part of a 4-man early warning outpost, located 35 meters from his company’s lines. At 1400 hours a North Vietnamese Army company rapidly approached the outpost along a well defined trail. Pfc. Lozada alerted his comrades and commenced firing at the enemy who were within 10 meters of the outpost. His heavy and accurate machinegun fire killed at least 20 North Vietnamese soldiers and completely disrupted their initial attack. Pfc. Lozada remained in an exposed position and continued to pour deadly fire upon the enemy despite the urgent pleas of his comrades to withdraw. The enemy continued their assault, attempting to envelop the outpost. At the same time enemy forces launched a heavy attack on the forward west flank of Company A with the intent to cut them off from their battalion. Company A was given the order to withdraw. Pfc. Lozada apparently realized that if he abandoned his position there would be nothing to hold back the surging North Vietnamese soldiers and that the entire company withdrawal would be jeopardized. He called for his comrades to move back and that he would stay and provide cover for them. He made this decision realizing that the enemy was converging on 3 sides of his position and only meters away, and a delay in withdrawal meant almost certain death. Pfc. Lozada continued to deliver a heavy, accurate volume of suppressive fire against the enemy until he was mortally wounded and had to be carried during the withdrawal. His heroic deed served as an example and an inspiration to his comrades throughout the ensuing 4-day battle. Pfc. Lozada’s actions are in the highest traditions of the U.S. Army and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the U.S. Army.
            In memory:
            PFC Lozada was buried with full military honors in Long Island National Cemetery located in Farmingdale, New York. His name is located in the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall Panel 30E-Row 045. His name is also inscribed in “El Monumento de la Recordación” (Monument of Remembrance), dedicated to Puerto Rico’s fallen soldiers and situated in front of the Capitol Building in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The Bronx honored him by naming a playground in his honor located behind 175 Willis Ave.
            ————————————————————–
            RUBIO, EURIPIDES
            Rank and organization:Captain, U.S. Army, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 28th Infantry,1st Infantry Division, RVN.
            Place and date:Tay Ninh Province, Republic of Vietnam, 8 November 1966.
            Entered service at:Fort Buchanan, Puerto Rico
            Born: 1 March 1938, Ponce, Puerto Rico.
            Citation:
            For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Capt. Rubio, Infantry, was serving as communications officer, 1st Battalion, when a numerically superior enemy force launched a massive attack against the battalion defense position. Intense enemy machinegun fire raked the area while mortar rounds and rifle grenades exploded within the perimeter. Leaving the relative safety of his post, Capt. Rubio received 2 serious wounds as he braved the withering fire to go to the area of most intense action where he distributed ammunition, re-established positions and rendered aid to the wounded. Disregarding the painful wounds, he unhesitatingly assumed command when a rifle company commander was medically evacuated. Capt. Rubio was wounded a third time as he selflessly exposed himself to the devastating enemy fire to move among his men to encourage them to fight with renewed effort. While aiding the evacuation of wounded personnel, he noted that a smoke grenade which was intended to mark the Viet Cong position for air strikes had fallen dangerously close to the friendly lines. Capt. Rubio ran to reposition the grenade but was immediately struck to his knees by enemy fire. Despite his several wounds, Capt. Rubio scooped up the grenade, ran through the deadly hail of fire to within 20 meters of the enemy position and hurled the already smoking grenade into the midst of the enemy before he fell for the final time. Using the repositioned grenade as a marker, friendly air strikes were directed to destroy the hostile positions. Capt. Rubio’s singularly heroic act turned the tide of battle, and his extraordinary leadership and valor were a magnificent inspiration to his men. His remarkable bravery and selfless concern for his men are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit on Capt. Rubio and the U.S. Army.
            In memory:
            The U.S. Army Reserve Center in the Puerto Nuevo sector of San Juan, PR was named after Captain Eurípides Rubio. The Department of Veterans Affairs Outpatient Clinic in Ponce, PR was also named in memory of Captain Eurípides Rubio. Capt. Eurípides Rubio’s name is inscribed in “El Monumento de la Recordación” (Monument of Remembrance), dedicated to Puerto Rico’s fallen soldiers and situated in front of the Capitol Building in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The name Eurípides Rubio is inscribed on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial (“The Wall”) on Panel 12E, Row 044. His remains are buried in the Puerto Rico National Cemetery in the city of Bayamon, Puerto Rico – Section HSA, Site 5.
            ————————————————————–
            SANTIAGO-COLON, HECTOR
            Rank and organization:Specialist Fourth Class, U.S. Army, Company B, 5th Battalion, 7th Cavalry, 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile)
            Place and date: Quang Tri Province, Republic of Vietnam, 28 June 1968
            Entered service at:New York, N.Y
            Born:20 December 1942, Salinas, Puerto Rico.
            Citation:
            For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Realizing that there was no time to throw the grenade out of his position, he retrieved the grenade, tucked it in to his stomach and, turning away from his comrades, absorbed the full impact of the blast. Sp4c. Santiago-Colón distinguished himself at the cost of his life while serving as a gunner in the mortar platoon of Company B. While serving as a perimeter sentry, Sp4c. Santiago-Colón heard distinct movement in the heavily wooded area to his front and flanks. He alerted his fellow sentries in the area to move to their foxholes and remain alert for any enemy probing forces. From the wooded area around his position heavy enemy automatic weapons and small arms fire suddenly broke out, but extreme darkness rendered difficult the precise location and identification of the hostile force. Only the muzzle flashes from enemy weapons indicated their position. Sp4c. Santiago-Colón and the other members of his position immediately began to repel the attackers, utilizing hand grenades, antipersonnel mines and small-arms fire. Due to the heavy volume of enemy fire and exploding grenades around them, a North Vietnamese soldier was able to crawl, undetected, to their position. Suddenly, the enemy soldier lobbed a hand grenade into Sp4c. Santiago-Colón’s foxhole. Realizing that there was no time to throw the grenade out of his position, Sp4c. Santiago-Colón retrieved the grenade, tucked it in to his stomach and, turning away from his comrades, absorbed the full impact of the blast. Heroic self-sacrifice saved the lives of those who occupied the foxhole with him, and provided them with the inspiration to continue fighting until they had forced the enemy to retreat from the perimeter. By his gallantry at the cost of his life and in the highest traditions of the military service, Sp4c. Santiago-Colón has reflected great credit upon himself, his unit, and the U.S. Army.
            In memory:
            On July 1975, The Puerto Rican National Guard renamed their base “Camp Salinas”, which is located close to Santiago-Colón’s birth town, with the name “Camp Santiago” in his honor. He was the second Puerto Rican to be so honored. The first Puerto Rican who has a base named after him is Marine PFC Fernando Luis García. Santiago-Colón’s name on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial is located at Panel 54W Line 013. Santiago-Colón’s name is also inscribed in “El Monumento de la Recordación” (Monument of Remembrance), dedicated to Puerto Rico’s fallen soldiers and situated in front of the Capitol Building in San Juan, Puerto Rico. His remains are buried in the Cementerio Municipal de Salinas – Salinas, Puerto Rico.
            ————————————————————–
            Humbert Roque Versace
            Rank and organization:Captain, U.S. Army, Intelligence Advisor, Special Operations
            Place:Republic of Vietnam
            Entered service at:Norfolk, Virginia
            Born:Honolulu, Hawaii
            Citation:
            For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while a prisoner of war during the period of 29 October 1963 to 26 September 1965 in the Republic of Vietnam. While accompanying a Civilian Irregular Defense Group patrol engaged in combat operations in Thoi Binh District, An Xuyen Province, Republic of Vietnam on 29 October 1963, Captain Versace and the CIDG assault force were caught in an ambush from intense mortar, automatic weapons, and small arms fire from elements of a reinforced enemy Main Force battalion. As the battle raged, Captain Versace fought valiantly and encouraged his CIDG patrol to return fire against overwhelming enemy forces. He provided covering fire from an exposed position to enable friendly forces to withdraw from the killing zone when it was apparent that their position would be overrun, and was severely wounded in the knee and back from automatic weapons fire and shrapnel. He stubbornly resisted capture with the last full measure of his strength and ammunition. Taken prisoner by the Viet Cong, he demonstrated exceptional leadership and resolute adherence to the tenets of the Code of Conduct from the time he entered into a prisoner of war status. Captain Versace assumed command of his fellow American prisoners, and despite being kept locked in irons in an isolation box, raised their morale by singing messages to popular songs of the day, and leaving inspiring messages at the latrine. Within three weeks of captivity, and despite the severity of his untreated wounds, he attempted the first of four escape attempts by dragging himself on his hands and knees out of the camp through dense swamp and forbidding vegetation to freedom. Crawling at a very slow pace due to his weakened condition, the guards quickly discovered him outside the camp and recaptured him. Captain Versace scorned the enemy’s exhaustive interrogation and indoctrination efforts, and inspired his fellow prisoners to resist to the best of their ability. When he used his Vietnamese language skills to protest improper treatment of the American prisoners by the guards, he was put into leg irons and gagged to keep his protestations out of earshot of the other American prisoners in the camp. The last time that any of his fellow prisoners heard from him, Captain Versace was singing God Bless America at the top of his voice from his isolation box. Unable to break his indomitable will, his faith in God, and his trust in the United States of America and his fellow prisoners, Captain Versace was executed by the Viet Cong on 26 September 1965. Captain Versaces extraordinary heroism, self-sacrifice, and personal bravery involving conspicuous risk of life above and beyond the call of duty were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Army, and reflect great credit to himself and the U.S. Armed Forces.
            In memory:
            On July 9, 2002, Secretary of the Army Thomas E. White and Army Chief of Staff General Eric K. Shinseki inducted Versace into the Pentagon Hall of Heroes. Versace’s capture and execution was chronicled in the book Five Years to Freedom by Nick Rowe.
            There is a statue with the likeness of Versace located in the Rocky Versace Plaza, made possible with a donation of $125,000 raised by the citizens of Alexandria, Virginia. On Memorial Day of 2007, Versace’s name was inscribed in Puerto Rico’s monument “El Monumento de la Recordacion”. Versace’s remains have never been recovered. His headstone at Arlington National Cemetery stands above an empty grave and can be located in the Memorial section MG-108.
            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Puerto_Rican_recipients_of_the_Medal_of_Honor

    1. Wouldn’t read anything by Mac. he is know top be biased. Of course on the other side of the coin, I can read and do my own reserach, so why do i need him or anyone else to tell me about history?

      1. Because you obviously are not a historian. Your statements show you do not understand the five C’s of the profession. You pick and choose your history to suit your beliefs. That’s why you need someone to tell you about history. McPherson isn’t biased. He just did very good research and you don’t like what he said. Basically you disagree with a Pulitzer Prize winning historian who is considered to be one of the best Civil War historians of all time.

        So let me see, I place George Purvis, a guy who refuses to consider any facts that prove him wrong, a guy that doesn’t know his Constitutional history, a guy that has no historical training at all, and a guy with no education versus James McPherson, trained historian, who has won a Pulitzer Prize, whose book is used in many classroom around the world for Civil War textbooks, and has a Ph.D in American History.

        Yep, George, you lose.

          1. Not a problem. Let’s return to what Isabel said. Coke is being criticized by the extremist right wing for showing a commercial that basically tells the truth about the cultural make up on the nation. Looks like the Coke marketing people thought this one out in advance quite well. They stand to lose next to no customers because the number two soda maker in the United States also advances and supports what the right wing considers a far left agenda in gay rights. Coke has the top two sodas in the US. Soda sales in the US have been declining over the last decade, so this commercial is going out to the world on the biggest TV worldwide.

            What the provincial right wing doesn’t understand is that the rest of the world does not dance to US politics. Therefore what the American right wing perceives as bad has next to little effect here in the US due to the tiny amount of right wing consumers that will actually drink a different soda not made by Coke or Pepsi. They stand to gain for more international customers than American customers as well.

            And for those that say they will drink tea, PepsiCo owns Lipton Tea. Of course the right wing should just swig down some of the good old West Virginia water since they also don’t want any regulations to prevent disasters like the one that just happened. The problem the right wing has in this country is that what they say sounds oh so wonderful…until they put into practice. Then it blows up in their face. Reality is a real b…. and the American right wing hasn’t figured that out yet.

  5. Leaving aside the Pervisians, can we explore the melting pot vs. stew metaphor? Way back when I was in school, we described the US as a melting pot. Now, in a melting pot, all the incredients are melted together. They lose their individuality and become something else, something that combines all the ingredients and is, hopefully, a stronger alloy. In the stew analogy [similar to the tossed salad analogy I’ve also seen], the ingredients combine, but you can see each ingredient–the carrots, the celery, the potatoes, the meat. I can easily take out each ingredient and it will retain all its essential characteristics. They do combine in the stew to create a flavor, but as each ingredient can be easily removed, it doesn’t seem to me as though the product is as strongly united as what comes out of the melting pot.
    Rather than go back and forth over which analogy, if any, is more accurate, can we get more prescriptive? What SHOULD the US be like?

    1. Jimmy Dick

      I was raised with that same melting pot concept and it just doesn’t fly. Maybe that’s the goal, but it wasn’t happening for much of the 1900s. This brings up the whole thing about what is the American culture? Is there an distinctly American culture or are we deviations of Old World cultures mishmashed into a jumble? For all the talk of multiculturalism in America it doesn’t survive long over time. The first generation of immigrants may stand fast and even the second, but the third and fourth deviate from the home country a lot. That is just the reality of America. People that migrate here should expect to change. If they don’t want to change, then they need to stay where they were. In some cases that is not possible, but the act of migration implies a conscious act of change.
      Any immigrant who thinks they will not change or that their children or grandchildren will not change is fooling themselves. History is full of people who have changed from their founding generations regardless of ethnic or national background and identified as Americans. The really odd thing is most of the immigrants I’ve met want to become American, speak English, and fit in like everyone else. They love the concept of change. There are two types that don’t. Those that refuse to do so and those that are not allowed to do so. In many cases the dominant culture in the area won’t let them change. There’s a reason why some areas of the country began to embrace their Latin heritage. The people running the area wouldn’t accept them as Americans.

      1. If I read you right, Jimmy, you’re saying it doesn’t matter if we think it should be a melting pot, a stew, or a tossed salad. Eventually all immigrants assimilate [for lack of a better term]. I agree the melting pot isn’t a sufficient description, at least in the short term. What about if we look at a time frame greater than 100 years, though? Many elements of African and Hispanic cultures are now familiar parts of American culture. Many elements of various European cultures are now familiar parts of American culture. Elements of Asian cultures are slowly making their way into American culture. Over that time multiple generations of descendents of immigrants have become deeply ingrained in the American population. Perhaps we start out as a tossed salad, then we turn into a stew, and then finally a melting pot?

        1. That would be apt. I was explaining this to a class today as we discussed immigration issues in the EU (Geography course). When you look at the US you see assimilation for the most part over a long period of time, but the entire culture is altered as it also changes to reflect the cultural and ethnic identity of others. I think this is a good thing and especially fit for the US with our Revolutionary principle of egalatarianism.
          I think some do not like this and we saw it reflected following the Civil War as the free black population was not welcomed with open arms.

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