George Stephanopoulos brings you the amazing true story behind America’s favorite Mexican holiday.To emphasize the holiday's historical importance to the U.S., I'm being a good environmentalist by recycling an excerpt from David Von Drehle of The Washington Post about Americans misunderstanding of today — We get Cinco de Mayo wrong. But we’re not wrong to celebrate it.
[I]t’s entirely appropriate that Cinco de Mayo matters more in the United States. The event commemorated on this holiday was a triumph of Mexican spirit and courage. For us, though, it just might have saved our nation.That's right; Cinco De Mayo may have helped preserve two countries, the U.S. and Mexico.
As it happened, the tide of the Civil War was just about to swing away from the North. In the summer of 1862, a Union campaign against the Confederate capital of Richmond fell to pieces and the rebels advanced on all fronts. Pressure for European intervention reached the boiling point.
Had a triumphant French army been raising the flag in Mexico City that summer, it might have made all the difference. The wavering Napoleon might have been emboldened to recognize the Confederacy, pulling the British along with him. Instead, the French army was licking its wounds, mangled by a smaller force of Mexican irregulars, and the emperor was momentarily chastened. Though France managed to topple the Mexican government the following year, its brief reign there came too late to help the South. The North had regained its momentum, and Lincoln was on his way to saving the Union.
NBC News has the story of the holiday's current commercial importance, What Cinco de Mayo Is All About.
For some, Cinco de Mayo is just an excuse to drink margaritas. So, we clear up some of the misconceptions about the holiday.I grew up in Los Angeles, so I became aware of Cinco De Mayo decades before the distributors of Mexican beer jumped on the holiday. Still, I'm not surprised they're the ones who promoted it.
I close this entry with Tipsy Bartender's most recent upload, Cinco de Mayo Margarita Fishbowl YOUTUBE.
It may be cliche, but it beats a bunch of recipes that use Corona!
Stay tuned for another entry about the Saturn Awards, whether it's today, in which case I'll be looking at Horror Film nominees because Guillermo del Toro produced nominee "Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark," connecting the awards to the holiday like I did three years ago for "Coco," or tomorrow, when I will have something for the Revenge of the Sixth, the dark side of Star Wars Day.