Having drawn my first breath in Alamosa and finding myself on track to live out my last moments here, I have begun to wonder how our area is viewed by others.
San Luis is the oldest town in Colorado, but not the first settled community. It all depends upon incorporation, a form of government.
Incorporation is an essential element of our political history, but not its settlement.
Now, there’s a new political term, municipalization, and a new ethnic term, Latinx.
That whirring heard in the still mountain air is hundreds of ancestors spinning in their graves.
Talking over a cup of coffee, the quirks of our Valley come to light.
The fact that some settlements in the south edge of the area are in Colorado and New Mexico both often escapes the curious eye.
The goal was to settle the area, not to govern it. Government came later. The people were civilized and a handshake was a signed agreement.
One by one, families settled the land and neighborhoods were formed. Neighborhoods became communities and incorporation of towns ensured peace for all.
Or so it was thought. The rural communities were often centered by the church, which also was a form of government.
Each small community had its patron saint and is usually named in honor of that entity.
One authoritarian fellow declared that rural Colorado has affection for California, that’s why San Francisco was founded.
He wasn’t baiting his audience, he “just knew” it was true. Some people come complete with preconceived ideas and build upon them.
Others came generations ago, bringing their culture and language along. They wanted to live in peace, till the soil and worship their way.
Settlement in many places brought some disagreement that could be solved with fresh tortillas
Like so many aspects of life in our area, some made little sense.
Politics became the initiative, along with centuries of conflict with and distrust of our neighbors to the south and a bowl of green chili, which has given birth to a controversy of its own.
Hatch or Pueblo?
It depends upon the chef.
People don’t always get along. A big, impenetrable wall is sought at the border between the United States of America and the United States of Mexico.
Is the same sought at the northern border?
Is one culture more prone to criminal activities than another?
Would a wall work to control the people in Colorado and New Mexico who have worked and lived with each other for many generations, but have developed problems due to progress?
Right through the heart of Garcia, down the street.
The solutions to most problems exist within them.
What’s in a label? Why is it there? Who has created it?
I polite discussion will reveal all this and the solution is understanding what we all have in common.