The Curious Case of the IRS v. Tio Taco

The current developing scandal out of the Cincinnati office of the Internal Revenue Service(IRS) in which right-wing groups, including several conservative Latino ones, were stripped down to their financial and organizational skivvies by zealous bureaucrats of the IRS brings to mind a similar attempt to use the governmental agency to go after ‘enemies’ of the policies of the Administration in power which occurred about 40 years ago. The only difference that seems to be emerging is that the staff of the current Chief Executive seems to purposely kept the existence of the witch hunt from the knowledge of the President instead of being directly done with the knowledge and approval of the Resident in Chief of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

What I want to address in my piece is not the scandal and abuse of power directly but the deafening silence from the Left when it comes to the seemingly unethical and illegal treatment experienced by the conservative Hispanic groups. The so-called Progressives, especially Latino groups such as MALDEF, La Raza, and LULAC, would be manning the barricades and running to the nearest press microphone if the groups suffering the questionable probing by the IRS were of a more liberal philosophy.

I believe there are two reasons we are hearing, in the words of Simon and Garfunkel, ‘the sounds of silence’ from these progressive Latinos: [1] the concept of Tio Taco (i.e. the Latino version of the African American Uncle Tom) and [2] hypocrisy of the Left when it comes to tolerating any views but their own.

For many Latinos, especially those who have enjoyed the benefits of a college education, look at any of their fellow Latinos who believe in the basic values of the larger society as traitors to ‘la raza’. They view Latinos who believe in the promise and potential of free enterprise as people who are poor, deluded individuals who have sold out to the ‘gringo’ in order to be welcomed by the larger society at the expense of their membership in the Latino community. Examples of this would be: Alberto Gonzales, US Attorney General(the first Latino to hold that office)under President George W. Bush and Marco Rubio, Republican Senator from Florida, and Ted Cruz, Senator from Texas. They are vilified by the enlightened Progressive Latinos and rest of the Left. Their achievements are minimized and mocked while others like Sonia Sotomayor are honored for their achievements because they hold the ‘right’ political views.

This attitude also a symptom of the hypocrisy of Progressive Latinos. This attitude reflects that it is okay to hold any political view or speak out for your beliefs as long as those beliefs reflect those of the so-called Progressives. If a Latino holds a view that is anathema to what a ‘real Latino’ should hold, you can bet that Progressive Latinos will rush to NOT defend your rights or speak out for your fair and equitable treatment.

It is hard to see what the greater scandal here is: the seemingly unlawful treatment of conservative Latino groups by the IRS or the unfair abandonment of these groups by a hypocritical Latino Left.

By Being Latino Contributor, Jeffery Cassity Jeffery Cassity is a mostly socially-liberal, fiscally-conservative Anglo male who is involved in his local Hispanic community as the widower of a 1st generation Mexican-American woman and his active, some would say hyperactive, membership in the local Council of the League of Latin American Citizens(LULAC)

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