2018-05-01 / Features

CINCO DE MAYO

What Cinco de Mayo is not:

1 Cinco de Mayo is not the birthday of a famous Mexican hero.

2. Cinco de Mayo is not the commemoration of the Mexican victory over American forces at the Alamo.

3. Cinco de Mayo is not the celebration of Mexico’s Independence Day. That is celebrated Sept. 16.

4. Cinco de Mayo is not a religious holiday in Mexico.

5. Cinco de Mayo is not the last day of the school year in Mexico.

6. Cinco de Mayo is not the official start of summer in Mexico.

7. Cinco de Mayo is not the date for national elections in Mexico.

8. Cinco de Mayo is not the day tacos were invented.

What Cinco de Mayo is:

1. Cinco de Mayo is the fifth day of May, just as the name indicates.

2. Cinco de Mayo is a holiday that commemorates what was an unlikely victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862, by Mexican soldiers fighting under the leadership of Gen. Ignacio Zaragoza.

3. Cinco de Mayo is a time for ceremonial parades in Mexico to recall the victory over an invading force threatening Mexico.

4. Cinco de Mayo is a time for celebrating Mexican-American culture in this country.

5. Cinco de Mayo is considered, by some, to be more dramatically celebrated in the United States than in Mexico, thanks to a combination of factors. Among these are the fact that Mexican miners in the gold country around Columbia, Calif., were so overjoyed by news of their countrymen’s victory that they spontaneously fired off rifles and fireworks, sang patriotic Mexican songs and made impromptu speeches. Celebrating it became popular in a wider circle during the rise of the Chicano movement in the 1940s and the concept spread in a limited way across the country. It was the efforts of beer companies to capitalize on the celebration that helped it on its way, however.

6. Cinco de Mayo is the object of a concurrent resolution of the U.S. Congress calling on the President of the county to issue a proclamation calling on the people of this country to celebrate the day with appropriate ceremonies and activities.

7. Cinco de Mayo is a celebration in this country that typically includes an emphasis on alcoholic beverages, foods and music.

8. Cinco de Mayo is celebrated with more vigor and enthusiasm in the United States than in Mexico, many say.

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