Thursday, March 21, 2013

Latino Insurance

  Driving in my area the other day I noticed some new signs in a strip mall.  “Art’s Liquor” was not new.  “US Post Office” was not new.  “Latino Insurance”, now that was new.  Latino Insurance?  I paused.   I know, I know.  The intent most likely is for people who are Latino to know there is a specific place where they will feel most welcome when purchasing insurance.  But then, what if it isn’t?  What if Latino Insurance is a special kind of insurance for bigots?  From my ultraconservative friends I often hear  about blocking borders and how “those people” need to find someplace else to call home.  Not in the US of A.  Maybe these are the people who would buy ‘Latino Insurance’?  “Oh, no, I don’t want them living on my block and now they can’t because if they try, well, I’ll just cash in on my Latino Insurance.” 

      And if the prejudice against Hispanics can fall under an insurance blanket, what about “Black Insurance’ and “Asian Insurance”, or “Elder Insurance”, or “Homeless Insurance”, or “Gay Insurance”, or “Female Insurance”?   No end to the types of insurance that would focus on NIMBY.  Trying to keep a place secure against ‘them’, outsiders, ‘not us’.  Insecure people looking for some security and projecting it on people who are identifiably different than themselves.  Through the lens of prejudice, however, security is not to be found.
     So, I’ll continue to think, to hope really, that the new sign names a specific audience to help, rather than the other alternative.  That alternative is worrisome to me because it speaks of division rather than unity.  The US of A is all about unity.  It even says so in the title.

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