Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Statues: Espada’s “Bully”

Love this poem and the epic reversal it depicts. Roosevelt becomes the defenseless one: his fists in desperate need of a sword or the reins of a steed – at the very least a podium from which to declare marching orders.

But the Puerto Rican children are the ones with the marching orders now. Roosevelt is “invaded … with its army of Spanish-singing children.” Of course, these students are armed with little more than graffiti with which to fight; their intent is not to make malevolent war. That is what separates them from Roosevelt. Therefore, while this is their “revenge,” it is not one of equal measure. Unless, perhaps, it is conceived of as revenge in a non-violent fashion. The greatest rebuttal to Roosevelt is not violence in return but rather a commitment, on the part of the affected minority, to education, betterment, and shaping America to be a more polyvalent society.

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