Assimilation Fail: Why Isn’t Chicano Comedian George Lopez A Loyal American?

A common theme running through Lopez’ work is that Latinos are vibrant, exciting, spontaneous people, while white people are effete and uptight.

“…Sheriff Joe in Arizona, f— you, you f—in’ puto. [Loud applause] How about that? F— you, you fat motherf—er f— you. I said I was gonna talk some sh-t, f— you, Sheriff Joe, you f—in’ puto [Spanish-language profanity]. F— you.” [Loud applause].

—George Lopez, “It’s Not Me It’s You” HBO Special

This angry, and very unfunny rant, was recently uttered by Mexican-American comedian George Lopez to a large audience which applauded loudly. (Hear it here—language warning. ).

Why is George Lopez, a professional comedian, so angry at Joe Arpaio, sheriff of Arizona’s Maricopa County, fighting the illegal invasion of his county?

Lopez is a successful Mexican-American entertainer who has based his career on being Mexican-American. Born in 1961 in California, and eventually abandoned by both his parents, George was raised by his maternal grandmother who provides many of the anecdotes in his stand-up routine.

Besides his long career in stand-up comedy, Lopez has hosted a radio show, been an NFL commentator, acted on television and in movies. From 2002 to 2007 he was the producer, writer and star of the “George Lopez” sitcom, which was followed by hosting TV talk show Lopez Tonight, from 2009 to 2011. George Lopez has published his autobiography, Why You Crying? co-written by CBS’s Armen Keteyian and has a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame.

So George Lopez is a celebrity in today’s celebrity-crazed society. And he’s richer than most of us will ever be. And yet, like Eva Longoria and other prominent Mexican-American celebrities, there is something in George Lopez’s soul that doesn’t identify with, and even seems to resent, the historical American nation.


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