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Is 'Mexican Mitt' a pocho? A peek behind the Twitter parody

Screen shot from Pocho.com


On yesterday's Patt Morrison show on KPCC, cartoonist and funny man Lalo Alcaraz revealed - sort of - that's he's "a hundred percent" behind the Mitt Romney twitter parody, @Mexican Mitt.

That meaning a hundred percent behind "Mexican Mitt" as a supporter, of course.

"I think we had a misunderstanding, Patt," Alcaraz joked. "When I said I was the man behind Mexican Mitt, I meant I am behind him a hundred percent, as (are) all Latinos."

Alcaraz, who recently relaunched the Pocho.com political satire site, was cagey about @Mexican Mitt when I asked him about it recently, too. But on air, his "Ajuua!!" does sound suspiciously like that of the charro suit-clad Romney parody, who has more than 3,000 followers.

For those not familiar with @MexicanMitt, the humor revolves around Republican presidential candidate Romney's family roots in Mexico, something he's only recently begun talking about on the campaign trail. He's the descendant of Mormons who moved to Mexico from the U.S. in the late 1800s to avoid anti-polygamy laws. His grandfather and father were born in the northern state of Chihuahua. His father came to the U.S. with his parents at age five.

Unlike the reserved real Mitt, "Mexican Mitt" is, um, outspoken, with a personality not unlike that of the crazy uncle who is the life of the family party, that is until he starts offending the guests.

In what Alcaraz described on the show as a "kind of this norteño, weird shouting Spanish" (and hilarious Spanglish), "Mexican Mitt" opines heartily on the presidential race. This week he provided running commentary on the Florida debate (his response to the real Romney's self-deportation comment was "I'M SELF DEPORTING TO MY RANCHO, for the VICTORY PARTY! Ajuua!"), saying things the real candidates never would ("I MADE UN CHINGO DE DINERO!" or "I am NOT GONNA aoplogize for ESTEALING YOUR MONEY LEGALLY! Ajua!").

Beyond @MexicanMitt, the "La Cucaracha" cartoonist also talked about his latest project, the revived Pocho.com, and the evolution of pochismo. (The term "pocho" began as an insulting way to describe Mexican Americans who had lost their cultural connection to Mexico, but has since been reclaimed as a badge of pride.) He had a nice description of that evolution at the end:

"The pocho concept, it's expanding to everyone...there might be a better word for it in Japanese...but you know what, 'pocho' applies to everybody, because we are all moving within different cultures. Many of us are married to people from other cultures. We are creating pochismo every minute of the day. Every time you drive by the sign that says 'pastrami burrito,' that is pochismo right there."

Audio from the complete interview can be downloaded here.
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