Acute Hispanic Accents A Grave Problem
Print Friendly and PDF

Steve Sailer recently quoted this sentence from Manny Fernandez in the New York Times:

A Fox News Latino headline this summer read: “Julián Castro: Son of Chicana Activist, Harvard Law Grad, Future U.S. President?”

That's not exactly true: the headline actually said Julian Castro: Son of Chicana Activist, Harvard Law Grad, Future U.S. President?

The difference is in the accent. Not the phoney-baloney pseudo-Spanish accent Mr. Castro speaks with(he insists on pronouncing his first name Hooley-ANN) but the acute accent in the "A" of “Julián".This is annoying. 

For one thing,  you get different Google search results for Fernandez's version of the headline than you do for the one with the regular "A."

Second, it's phoney—Julian is  American-born, raised in Texas, and doesn't really speak Spanish. To quote a 2010 NYT profile of him:

"Early in his administration, Castro assigned his chief of staff, Robbie Greenblum—a Jewish lawyer from the border town of Laredo whose own Spanish is impeccable—to discreetly find him a tutor. Rosie Castro's son is now being taught Spanish by a woman named Marta Bronstein. Greenblum met her in shul."

But this accent over the a in Julian, like the accent John Derbyshire was making fun of last night, is symbolic—another symptom of reverse assimilation, of ethnic minorities identifying with something other than America.

Print Friendly and PDF