savages1For many years now, there has been an ongoing battle to reinvent El Paso under the utopian vision of a powerful elite. I have been documenting this and have offered you many examples of the destruction of El Paso’s identity. Sometimes it is important to just focus on the most basic element to make a point. I cannot get more basic than a toilet.

All of us need a toilet and most of us use one many times a day. It is the most basic need we have, besides the need to drink water and eat food. As a matter fact, eating and drinking directly results in our need to use the toilet.

A few years ago a group of powerful individuals imposed Joyce Wilson upon the community to take the city’s residents kicking and screaming into the next phase of the utopian paradise they want to make out of El Paso. The first phase was the baseball stadium and the demolition of city hall. The problem with this utopian revitalization is that it is being designed for the specific use of the elite ignoring the rest of the community that have been delegated as nothing more than wallets to fund the utopian dream.

Anyone opposed to the drive towards the utopian paradise is labelled a “crazy,” marginalized and sometimes driven from the city. Those that support the utopian public agenda, like the El Paso Times, are given a carrot, or two to keep them happily proclaiming the “vision” that is reinventing the city.

The carrots have helped the utopian drivers keep the rabble-rousers in check and the truth hidden behind the cloak of the “promise” of the wonderfulness that is just around the corner. Simple things like a toilet that is an impediment to the “vision” for the promised utopia is conveniently ignored by the powerful and their enablers.

Much money and “vision” has been spent on the San Jacinto Plaza. Ethnicity and cultural identity has been superficially touted in the design and the inclusion of ethnic-based iconography such as the Huacha courts while conveniently ignoring the most basic of human needs – a toilet. What many are missing is that the ethnic icons are not a celebration but will be a reminder of what once was.

The lack of toilets at San Jacinto Plaza clearly betrays the true reason behind the revitalization of El Paso. It shows that the “raza” and the riffraff have no place in the promised utopia that is being built to replace El Paso. Apologists like the El Paso Times’ Joe Muench are quick to defend the nixing of bathrooms for the park because that is what they are paid to do. You see, the horde is intent on reinventing El Paso and there is no place for you. The horde understands that distracting the citizenry paying for their utopia is the best the way to keep them happy with table scraps occasionally thrown at them but the end result is to get rid of you as there is no place for you in their utopia for old El Paso.

City council has had numerous opportunities to address the lack of toilets at San Jacinto Plaza. Each time the discussion has moved away from this very basic need into discussing portable toilets to making businesses make their toilets available to everyone. In other words, it is not about solving a very basic need but rather keeping everyone distracted while the displacement of the undesirables is accomplished. The most insidious part of the development of the utopia for the elite is that they have successfully kept you paying the bills while at the same time ensuring you have no place in the paradise they are building for themselves, with your money.

Many of you think that you won the war against the destruction of the fabric that makes El Paso when Segundo Barrio was saved from the wrecking ball, when in reality; the horde regrouped, learned their lesson and has successfully and systematically been erasing the ethnicity that made El Paso unique.

The Huacha courts at San Jacinto aren’t about embracing the culture of El Paso, they are, instead, museum curiosities that future generations will point to and ask their parents what are those things. The parents will gleefully proclaim, they remind us of the savages that once occupied these lands that thankfully are no longer here. They will then scurry their brood along so that they can gawk at the statues of the saviors of the New El PasoFoster & Hunt.

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...

3 replies on “Do you really think there is a place for you in the revitalized El Paso?”

  1. Martin, I will start with the toilet point. I would say the lack of toilets at the Plaza was more of piss poor planning (no pun intended). To say it was an anti-Hispanic thing is making you sound like Al Sharpton. Although, we have a few of the Mexican version in El Paso.

    While talking with tourists, the common question was why are we destroying the unique look of El Paso. They couldn’t understand why do we want to look like other cities. Granted the city can use some sprucing up, but to destroy it? And the bs excuse that they are beyond repair? How does a government building like city hall and others get beyond repair if you do required maintenance on a regular basis?

    One thing El Paso is definitely known for, is the corruption ! Think out of towers don’t hear or read about the all the jailed officials and the ones that get a pass. We’re still waiting for Lilly Morgan. Even OJ’s murder trial didn’t take this long. We gave the reputation of having some of the worse schools because of the corruption. Did everyone forget the Professor that changed his mind about a position at UTEP because of the school s corruption and school board problems?

    Yell all you want about “sister city”, but that only hurts El Paso. Tourists hear that and come exorcting to experience the sin city atmosphere. Doesn’t matter which city is worse, Juarez or El Paso or which city is guilty of corrupting the other. That image is the result of the “cheap” political show ship by the former mayor that presented the image of a carnival caller. He wasn’t even good at that!

    Is there a place for me here, yes El Paso needs people that are willning to speak up and denounce all the corruption and stupidity in government. So don’t tell me to move. I will not abandon my city ” Juarez style”. I will stay and try to improve our city.

    The other thing, keep right on telling peo

  2. Bravo Martin… This piece was so bad I had to keep reading. 1.) San Jacinto (awesome name) park has never had bathrooms so who cares? Why do you want to spend more when you are already griping about taxes going up?
    2.) The small park is in the heart of downtown El Paso surrounded by buildings that contain probably no less than 1000 toilets within a block radius.
    3.) Daily maintenance expense on a public toilet would also increase taxes.
    4.) That bathroom would be so nasty no one would use it.
    5.) Lilly Limon spouted this race same card argument about this issue. She is a racist that only divides our community. Your piece here does the same thing. That makes you a racist just like Al Sharpton.

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