There used to be questions. Then there was anger. And now, there is outright rage in El Paso. The little unassuming yappity dog that the baseball ownership group was hoping would unite the divided community around the incoming baseball team seems to have instead lit the fuse of rage. A dog better known for its diminutive size and unassuming posture could possibly become the symbol of rage in the community.

I am sure that in the meeting the branding team had with the baseball ownership the question of how will the team’s name be used to inspire team unity came up at least once. Imagine a growling diminutive dog holding its own against overwhelming odds was probably one of the imageries bantered about.

As much thinking that might have gone into the process of selecting a name for the team to represent El Paso I am sure not once was any thought given that the cute little toy cartoon of a dog, some consider a glorified rat would be the driving force behind rage in the community.

Rage at the whole stadium fiasco.

MountainStar and the enablers to the stadium have looked for ways to unite the divided community around their stadium and their team. What they seem to have ignited instead was raged unity against the team and the whole fiasco.

In less than 24 hours after the team name was announced over 7,500 signatures were gathered online demanding that the name be changed.

At first I thought this was just an example of a public relations campaign gone awry. It now seems that it has not only gone awry but it is threatening to turn into outright rebellion against a team that hasn’t even set foot in El Paso yet.

Not only is the community overwhelmingly negative about its city having a dog that does nothing to inspire confidence, much less strength represent them but they are now angry that the name is not only offensive it is racist to the team’s home community.

In a community overwhelmingly Hispanic it is not a good idea to have Hispanics question how their city is to be presented. By the overwhelming negative response to the name and the racist intonations being raised the whole stadium fiasco might end up being brought to its knees by a rat masquerading as a dog.

East of El Paso, the rest of Texas has perceived El Paso as an annoying appendage. The El Paso Chihuahuas have just confirmed to them that El Paso is as annoying as they already knew.

I am actually really flabbergasted that supposedly intelligent people would not have seen this coming.

Back on July 15, I wrote “The Horde Propaganda, A Case Study and Naming the Team the Desert Gators”. Obviously I was wrong thinking the team would be named the Desert Gators. However as I laid out my reasoning I had written; “but El Paso would abhor being associated with the State of Chihuahua right next door”.

Look at the social media comments. If I, just a blogger with no formal education in branding knew that there would be community outrage with associating El Paso to Chihuahua how come a highly-paid supposedly professional marketing team couldn’t have seen that coming as well? Could it possibly be because those making the decisions about the baseball team name have no understanding or bothered to care about what the average El Pasoan really thinks?

Is the team ownership so arrogant and insulated in their own world view that they don’t comprehend the community’s essence much less understanding the community’s anger?

More importantly the majority, if not the whole discussion about the El Paso Chihuahuas has turned away from an incoming baseball team into a discussion about El Paso’s greatest insecurity; being associated and tied to Mexico.

Not only did the Chihuahua originate from the State of Chihuahua which happens to be the largest state in Mexico but Chihuahua borders El Paso. For generations many El Pasoans have had an inferiority complex about being mistaken for a city in Mexico.

In 2010 El Paso tried to distance itself from the violence in Juárez through branding campaigns. Likewise in 2011, the city’s marketing arm once again tried to distance itself from Mexico. Most El Pasoans I run into on my travels are quick to point out that El Paso is not Mexico.

Some of the historical buffs reading this blog might remember the San Elizario Salt War also known as the El Paso Salt War. In 1866, Mexican ethnic El Pasoans rose up against Anglo Texan capitalists and their political surrogates.

In the midst of trying to build community unity around their stadium scam, the Foster-Hunt led horde has instead ignited rage that has united a community around one thing; its complete disgust in the name of a team that is yet to set foot in El Paso.

It is possible that a diminutive, cartoonish rat masquerading as a dog actually be the spark that ignites outright rebellion against the stadium scam?

Martin Paredes

Martín Paredes is a Mexican immigrant who built his business on the U.S.-Mexican border. As an immigrant, Martín brings the perspective of someone who sees México as a native through the experience...

14 replies on “There is Rage in the Community”

  1. “West of El Paso, the rest of Texas has perceived El Paso as an annoying appendage.” You must be talking about Canutillo and Anthony, the only parts of Texas west of El Paso. (Seriously, Martín, you need an editor.)

    And as far as the Salt War is concerned, it resulted in dozens of deaths, the political and economic punishment of San Elizario (the county seat moved to El Paso and the railroad bypassed the town), and the political subjugation of the Hispanic majority in the county for at least 100 years (it took nearly that long to have a Hispanic mayor of El Paso, for example).

    So, unless you think a baseball team picking a mascot is worthy of dying for or are advocating a rebellion that would result in those rebelling to have even less power than they did before, I’d recommend choosing better examples. (Martín, you really need an editor.)

    1. Hello “Anson”, thank you for taking the time to read and comment on my blog. I have corrected my factual error about “west” instead of “east”. All of Texas is west of me so I inadvertently missed that.

      However, if you are volunteering to be my editor I would ask that you read my blog for comprehension. I pointed to the Salt War as an example of everyday El Pasoans rising to challenge an oligarch.

      Nowhere did I write it was successful. But then again you already knew that because you support the oligarchs raping the El Paso taxpayers and therefore are not afraid of some “rift-rafts” being angered by a Chihuahua,


      1. Martín, I’d love to be your editor. However, I get paid well for my editing skills, so I can’t “volunteer.” If you’d like to hire me, I’d be happy to discuss payment arrangements. As a sign of my good faith, here’s two more mistakes I found on this post: The Salt War was in 1877, not 1866; and the rabble is called riffraff, not “rift-rafts.”

        Second, you still aren’t really getting the point of the Salt War, which was more than “an example of everyday El Pasoans rising to challenge an oligarch.” Rather, it was a horrible example of mob rule run amok — the violent horde was so out of control that the responding Texas Rangers surrendered (for the only time in their history). I’ll say again that you have not comprehended the lessons of that ugly mark in El Paso County’s history. (I can suggest some further reading if you are interested, no ORR required!)

        Third, it’s hard to “read [your] blog for comprehension” when it is riddled with so many mistakes, poor leaps in logic and name-calling. You assume too much to charge me with “support[ing] the oligarchs raping the El Paso taxpayers.” The only raping I’m seeing is your raping of the English language and of El Paso’s history.

      2. The Salt War struggle started in the 1860’s and continued on to the late ’70’s. UTEP and city historians only concentrate on the horrible events that occurred around 1877 since the victors get to write history. The story about the Texas Ranger(s?) surrendering is true. But pick up a history book and learn the true details of that surrender and about the character of this so called Texas Ranger. Anson, like I tell the other bloggers and commenters – when you start using misspelling or grammar corrections to defend your comments, you already lost.

      3. My history comes from the folks in San Eli who know it best — 20 Texas Rangers surrendered to a mob of 500 on or around Dec. 5, 1877. Regardless of the character of participants in this “uprising,” “rebellion,” or whatever-you-want-to-call-it, the violent episode — in which a mob of Mexican-Americans killed several Anglos — is still a poor example of what I think Martín is trying to get at: Mexican-American people in this town standing up against the leaders of the “horde,” who happen to be Anglo.

        My second point is that if Martín wants anyone to take himself seriously as a writer, he should take his writing more seriously. Details matter. If Martín keeps making mistakes with the small stuff, why should anyone trust anything else printed here?

        And in addition to offering my services as editor, I’d be happy to serve as a researcher too. Let’s chat!

      4. Anson — Martin needs neither your editing nor research skills, both of which are no doubt impressive. Martin writes a blog of opinion and his grammar is excellent — better than most whose first language is English. If you really want to volunteer your skills where they are needed, contact DavidK.

      5. You really should read more of the history. There were actually two salt wars but the San Eli one was the result of Anglo greed (and I’m an Anglo) trying to stop a 300 year old tradition. Charles Howard, who caused the war, was not even an El Pasoan. He also murdered Cardis in the store of Solomon Schutz. The “Texas Rangers” were led by a man with no law enforcement experience, Tays; and his men were picked up in El Paso, none of whom had law enforcement experience. The aftermath of the capture of the Rangers and the killing of Howard was horrible in that an illegal “posse” descended on San Eli, hanging and beating Mexicans along the way and breaking numerous laws. As for the name of the team, come on. Who’s really going to be excited about playing against them? I also understand some of the season ticket holders have asked for refunds because of the name. That’s really a sign that the brand is a failure.

  2. “The stadium scam” that has nothing to do with you since you don’t live here and don’t pay taxes here.

  3. I think it’s pretty damned hilarious that people who fly the Mexican flag, call themselves Mexican with ‘American’ as an appendage, root for Mexican teams and sports stars, and scream and yell all day long about their ‘cultura’ and ‘heritage’, are so quick to spit on the very dog that a zillion people in this city have yapping in their backyards!

    I think it’s really sad that those same people are getting their panties in a twist over a stupid logo. If your ‘cultural identity’ is so tenuous, so fragile, that a CARTOON DOG can shatter it, then you need to take a hard look at yourself, and while you’re at it, get a tighter grip on your horses!

  4. Henry, DavidK doesn’t live here or pay taxes here either , but I don’t see you saying that over on his blog.
    One thing is for sure about the new name of the team. At least 50 percent of the cars driving around in El Paso will already have personalized plates.

  5. How great would it be when one of our “Chihuahuas” hits a home run and as he’s about to cross home plate, he stops, lifts his leg, and the crowd congratulates him by waving their ‘foamy fingers’ shaped like a fire hydrant !

  6. A marketing strategic segmentation plan (pychograhic) to sell a ‘cute little dog’ vs. a desert gator, aardvark, or sun dog. Public psychographic manipulation that precludes public opinion .

  7. Where were all those 7500 signatures when I joined a very small group of people who were petitioning stop the city hall demolition, where were all those 7500 signatures when we petition to stop the the stadium construction, screw all those people, this name brand,logo whatever its just part of the package that was to come, deal with it! Go Chihuahuas! Guau!

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