April 20, 2012

"My Hispanic surname is from my adoptive, now deceased, father. Since childhood I was told I was Hispanic."

"And unlike my blue-eyed, sandy-haired mother, I have dark hair and dark eyes and look Hispanic. This is the ethnicity that’s been checked off for me on all school and other forms. My parents always told me this might give me an edge for college admissions or some government jobs. I have recently found out I’m not Hispanic. My mother told me my biological father was Mediterranean, maybe Armenian. I make good grades and was accepted into a good college on my own merits. I've been offered a substantial financial scholarship available only for Hispanic students. Is it ethical to take it?"

If you think the answer so obviously "no" that anyone getting as far as writing it down should see that to ask the question is to demonstrate to yourself that the answer is "no," then you should read the advice columnist Emily Yoffe, who answers "yes."

71 comments:

Matthew Sablan said...

If being Hispanic is just claiming you are, I wonder what will happen when every child who is ineligible for any other race-based scholarship decides to just check Hispanic, just in case.

The Drill SGT said...

Entitlement and victimization advice.

They are giving stuff away, you need to get some.

My favorite line:

I’m confident your college is thrilled to include you in their count of Hispanic students and doesn’t really want to know you may be thinking of yourself as Armenian.

meaning, the college can't make its numbers with actual hispanics who are qualified, so they really don't want you to be honest about this. Just get along and go along with it.

PS: while we're on the subject, why in a time when many schools are 60/40 Female, are there extra female scholarships, and funded support activities for women :)

prairie wind said...

My sister-in-law was adopted by an Irish family and she celebrates her Irish heritage to the hilt. Is she "really" Irish? Nobody knows, nobody cares. This kid was adopted by a Hispanic man, so the kid is Hispanic.

Matthew Sablan said...

I find this line most insightful: "If you want to shed your Hispanic identity, of course you are free to do so."

-- She makes it sound so wrong for the woman to realize she was wrong about her race for so long. And, of course the college doesn't want to know if she is Armenian. Last I heard, they don't get money and grants for including Armenians. If it were up to the school, all of their students would fit nicely into quotas to help them get extra funding and to look good when they need to show how diverse they are. Provided it isn't one of the difficult racial identities, like Armenian, where they'd have to focus on genocide. No, much better to ignore reality and fit into a nice, neat box that doesn't require thinking.

"Given the price of tuition, a substantial scholarship is a blessing and you should claim it with equanimity."

-- And, is it right for her to take that scholarship that could be going to someone else? What else should she be willing to lie about to get a leg up? Don't you think it is wrong that this woman, if she doesn't check the box that she's Hispanic, might be denied education because her race only suffered genocide, which isn't enough to get her a scholarship, I guess?

Matthew Sablan said...

Though, I guess, if The Jerk was considered African-American...

madAsHell said...

My father-in-law was born in Chiapas, Mexico. We always told the kids "you're 1/4 Mexican" and to "check the beaner box".

Hagar said...

If anything, this goes to show how silly these "race" and "affirmative action" things are.
"Hispanic" is not a race; it just means anything associated with the Spanish language. Being adopted is supposed to give you all the rights of a "natural born" child," and having a Spanish surname is supposed to identify you as a "Hispanic," so this person qualifies.
On the other hand, we have a number of citizens, documented and otherwise, born and raised south of the border, who may have names such as, say, Aloysious Hickenlooper, or William Richardson, that may have to demonstrate their ability to speak Spanish in order to qualify.

jimbino said...

I though all my life that I was Irish, until age 36, when I heard the accident of my birth in Paraguay made me Hispanic. I wasted no time in applying for, and getting, the Hispanic scholarship for my law-school class.

Makes sense: if they want diversity, what better than a blue-eyed, fair-skinned Irish Hispanic?

pm317 said...

For advice columnist it is about honoring his adoptive father. If he was a good father to this guy, that would make sense.

Recently Obama sat on Rosa Parks' bus and spoke poetically about it. He does not have any slave ancestry rather history of selling slaves, not being one. But he has still used his half Blackness to rise to the very top convincing 90+% of the AAs he is one of them.

LilyBart said...

What would the people who founded the scholarship say? If they'd say, "No. we wish you luck in your college career, but this money was intended for someone who is actually hispanic", then she should not pursue it. To pursue it is dishonest.

Is this the criteria now - do whatever you can get away with? Ethics and honor be damned?

Curious George said...

Growing up and to this day my sister calls me Jorge. Probably a result of us taking Espanol in HS. Anyway, is that enough to get me some of this Hispanic moolah?

LilyBart said...

I'm reminded of Psalms 1 - "Do not walk in the counsel of the ungodly.."

Don't take advice from people who's ethics and morals are vastly different from your own. This Prudence gal is not an ethical person, I think.

prairie wind said...

Is this the criteria now - do whatever you can get away with? Ethics and honor be damned?

Well, is THIS what it has come to? We hold children responsible for the pieces of their background that they are unaware of? She has been Hispanic all her life and now she learns that she might be Armenian instead. I can see how that might be confusing to her, but the world accepted her as a Hispanic all her life because her father was Hispanic. Now her father doesn't count at all? He adopted her. He is her father. That's the way adoption works.

Next, someone will be howling for DNA testing before scholarship organizations can award scholarships.

Aridog said...

Hispanic, eh? Now is that "white Hispanic" or what?

As for Obama trying to be traditional African American by dint of color ... and that somehow got him elected: uh, not true, Obama was elected by a majority of white voters. the 12% AA can't elect anyone nationally on their own.

Obama's obvious issues with skin color, however cloaked in rhetoric, tells me he never was fit for the office he holds. Those who thought he was/is are still dreaming.

MLK was right, we should yearn for and reach a day when character counts more than the hue of our skin.

Molly said...

If you believe (a) that affirmative action is a good thing, AND (b) that it is designed to help disadvantaged minorities, AND (here's where it gets tricky) (c) that the disadvantage stems from genetic sources, then it is unethical to take the scholarship.

But if any of the three conditions fail, then it is ethical to take the scholarship.

Erika said...

It'll be entertaining to watch the entitlement and identity politics cheerleaders try to parse these things out as we interbreed more and more.

My grandfather, who left my grandmother when my mother was two and had no influence at all on how she was raised, and who died before I was born, was born in Portugal. My red-haired, green-eyed mother sports a Hispanic maiden name. Should I have been checking the Hispanic box all these years? I mean geez, just because I had a working-class white upbringing and no knowledge whatsoever of Hispanic culture [whatever that is] other than from people entirely unrelated to me or my station in life, such as friends, doesn't mean I can't line up for the freebies, right?

And my children: one of them was born in Washington state, and the next three were born on Guam. My husband and I are whitey McGees (unless, as we decided in the above paragraph, I get to be Hispanic), but the little ones, are they now official Pacific Islanders? They of the comfortable middle-class upbringing?

But wait, there's more!

My youngest child is adopted--he was not only born on Guam, but one of his birth parents is half Chamorro. So he was born on Guam, has 1/4 native Pacific Islander blood, but will be raised in white culture [whatever that is] in comfortable, stable middle class circumstances.

So who deserves more scholarship money, of the four kids raised in the same home under the same circumstances? The white kid born in Washington? The two white kids born on Guam? The mixed kid born on Guam? The adopted kid? All of the kids, because they have a great-grandfather born in Portugal in 1910? Or only the three bio kids who share the Portuguese guy's DNA? Come on social engineers; inquiring minds want to know!

Kit said...

I read this on the bus, on the way in yesterday, and came to the same conclusion, "no". I also had the sense that the writer heading in that direction, as well.

Then to read Yoffe's response, I was kind of taken aback. I see her point, but don't think it's the choice I could live with.

Aridog said...

LilyBart said...

Is this the criteria now - do whatever you can get away with? Ethics and honor be damned?

Yes. Can you show me any significant number of cases that proves otherwise in today's political arena?

I don't like it, either, but I can see the elephant in the room.

cokaygne said...

What is "authentically Hispanic'?

One of my college Spanish professors was a blue-eyed, blonde native of Mexico. Was he Hispanic? Could my college have claimed some extra money from somewhere by claiming to have this Hispanic on their faculty?

What about a man named O'Higgins who is the Jorge Washington of Chile, does his name disqualify him?

What about the leader of Irish independence whose father was Cuban bestowed a Spanish surname on young Eamonn, does his name qualify him? Being an American citizen by birth spared him from execution by the British.

These affirmative action quotas are monstrous. If this country survives it will be because the youth of today are screwing up the bean counters' grand designs by intermarrying with gusto.

Maybe she could lend her surname to an Asian-America who probably merits a scholarship but cannot get one because the college already has "too many" of them.

Elliott A said...

Unless she wants to feel like Clarence Thomas all her life, she should respectfully decline.

When I applied for a Public health Service scholarship back in the 70's, there was a question on the application whether you had ever lived in a "minority majority" area, to avoid asking for race.For two years in college i lived in a housing project which were regular apartments taken over by the local NJ municipality. The apartment had been passed down in my Fraternity for years and was DIRT CHEAP. Anyway, I always wondered if that affirmative answer had anything to do with my obtaining the scholarship, or if it was earned on my own merits.

traditionalguy said...

Uh oh. The spinning wheels within wheels of racism and ethnos grouping heritage are back.

Hispanic is an ethnos grouping heritage. Hispanic is not a race anymore than Irish is a race.

Many young spanish sailors swam ashore in Ireland and started families with the local girls when The Armada went down. Are they Irish or Hispanic? Hint: there is no Spanish race.

I can see an argument in favor of taking any scholarship, when the categories used are undefined except within the hearts of ethnos groups that favor Our Kind of People. The cooperation with that willful fantasy game on high moral grounds is not an acceptable response.

What if someone discovers that we are all part of the human race?

And how can trans sexuals claim a new gender? That is a harder question than whether Spain's Empire once ruled over your 3rd great grandfather thanks to the bravery and skills of a Genoese Admiral named Christopher Colombus.

The Drill SGT said...

Erika said...
It'll be entertaining to watch the entitlement and identity politics cheerleaders try to parse these things out as we interbreed more and more.

My grandfather, who left my grandmother when my mother was two and had no influence at all on how she was raised, and who died before I was born, was born in Portugal. My


You realize of course the the Portugese (and Brazilians) are Hispanics? Not by the orginial EEO laws. Some Agencies count one or both countries, some neither.


In fact some don't count Spanish (as in Spain) as Hispanic. To them it's more about the Indians than the Spaniards.

So you can be a Brazilian descended from African Slaves and you get to check: Other :)

Pogo said...

I would advise all young adults to claim minority status, thus flooding the system and finally crashing AA.

AA is anti-American, a bullshit effort that is is entirely destructive, and I see no reason to be ethical towards the implementation of any such evil.

Paul Zrimsek said...

We are we wasting our time scrutinizing the ethics of the person who's thinking of taking the scholarship, instead of the people who are offering it on those terms?

Elliott A said...

My mother in law had the maiden name of Gonzales, but her father was European Spanish. My daughter in law was named Swanson yet her mother is an immigrant from Cuba. Interesting juxtaposition of names and identities. In our culture in the US, there is such a mish mosh of people that these identities are really silly. The boy Althouse and the girl Swanson have an Hispanic daughter, go figure.

For newer people here who came during a recent commenting hiatus, I am an unrelated Althouse, but since we're so rare I have a special warmth for our hostess, Ann.

Fernandinande said...

This is the ethnicity ... My mother told me my biological father was ...

Some liberal racist is confused about terminology.

If you think the answer so obviously "no" ...

Isn't it less racist to get "hispanic" perks even though one isn't a mestizo?

ricpic said...

Saddest of all is that she learned cheating from her parents.

Writ Small said...

Dear Emily,

Today I found out I missed qualifying for the Hispanic scholarship by a single person. I am so bummed out, but I am on the waiting list and can maybe try college next year. I would have been the first person in my family to attend college, but my folks have been really supportive. My dad is going to try to get me a job working alongside him at his construction company, and that is where my question comes in. How can I tell my dad I'd rather try to find work at the local Starbucks?

- Signed Undaunted

CWJ said...

The old racism used to focus on things such as who qualified as an octoroon, etc. The mere fact that we a debating this issue only shows that the new racism is much the same.

Freeman Hunt said...

Isn't Prudie the one who gave the horrible advice to the soon to be cuckolded husband not long ago?

In any case, I don't care whether or not the woman takes the race-based scholarship.

I would consider saying that she doesn't deserve a scholarship on the basis of her writing to Prudie for advice.

Freeman Hunt said...

We are we wasting our time scrutinizing the ethics of the person who's thinking of taking the scholarship, instead of the people who are offering it on those terms?

This is the reason why I don't care whether or not she takes the money.

Tibore said...

Well now... call me stupid, but in the midst of all the sturm und drang about what constitutes Hispanic and what acceptable ethics are regarding ethnicity identification in applications, one question stands out for me: Weren't scholarships at one time rewards for accomplishment instead of identity?

I mean, seriously. Wouldn't the better course overall be about who earns a trip to college via accomplishment? Or is such just considered old-fashioned, out-of-date thinking nowadays? Here I thought colleges were supposed to be centers for excellence, not just aggregations of groups.

Dante said...

If a black guy could get a hold of a white only scholarship set aside by the KKK would I think it unethical? No. If a white guy got a scholarship set aside by the US of KKK Reverend Wright, would I think it being unethical to Reverend Wright? No.

So I agree with the stupid Slate chick but for different reasons. So long as you aren't breaking the law, help yourself to racist scholarships. And for the rest of us, let's be glad when someone works around the racist intents of racist scholarships.

Curious George said...

"Pogo said...
I would advise all young adults to claim minority status, thus flooding the system and finally crashing AA."

Made me think of the kid who yelled out "we're all niggers" when I was playing Call of Duty online.

Peter said...

I can recall sitting in one of those mandatory corporate diversity training sessions in which someone announced that the Company’s “goal” was fourteen percent Hispanic “representation” in its workforce.

BUT, we were told, that 14% "a goal, not a quota.”

Of course, most of us knew that “numerical goal” is a pretty good definition of “quota.” But we said not a word- for what’s the upside of speaking out in a diversity training session?

Which is to say: the core of Affirmative Action is a lie, it’s always been a lie and it is sustained by lying plus social pressure not to admit that anyone is lying.

So, this “Hispanic” is lying. Considering the corruption and dishonesty that is core of affirmative action, I’m inclined to agree with ‘Prudence’: If you can claim the spoils of this rotten system, why not just do it?

Fritz said...

The internship program in STEM that I get students from gives us bonuses if we take "minority" students. Minority students are in great demand, and tend to get picked up early. I've had two "hispanic" students. One was a rich kid from Palo Alto, utterly indistinguishable from a random bright California kid, and with a German surname. The other was a girl with an Argentinian mother, and an American father (both of whom I met). Extremely capable, and apparently doing well now. Again, she was from a relatively well off family, and not particularly in need of a "boost".

It's hard to blame people for taking advantage of programs like this. I prefer to blame the programs.

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

What Pogo said. Fuck 'em. Take the money and make the little Eichmanns twist in the wind.

I always mark "other" when asked my ethnicity. It is none of their business.

Rialby said...

Well the Pew Hispanic Center says that, if you say you're Hispanic, you're Hispanic here

Rialby said...

Quick anecdote - I went to business school with a black student who once said he was thinking about going back to get a 2nd MBA from a better program than the one we went to, confident in the fact that he could get another full ride.

Mitchell said...

If I found myself in the same situation as "Latin Not" I would claim the scholarship.

However, being a man of conscience, I would always make sure to speak with an accent as if I were Desi Arnaz.

The Drill SGT said...

Peter said... .
BUT, we were told, that 14% "a goal, not a quota.”


Translation:

Them, it's not a quota, it's a floor

netmarcos said...

I, 3 of my brothers, and 1 sister speak Spanish fluently. My sister's husband is a Spanish citizen. None of us look even remotely hispanic as the term is generally perceived - not even my sister's kids. Never even considered ticking the box on this one. Public school did automatically enroll my sister's oldest daughter in bilingual ed classes due to her Spanish surname though. That is a mistake that administration did not repeat :)

Quaestor said...

I was raised to believe that the foundation of morality is truthfulness, that the only possible justification of deceit is that the truth will do more harm than good, such as being truthful when asked by the Gestapo if Ann Frank is hiding in the attic of the Opekta Works. Now Emily Yoffe, a person who is paid to pontificate on matters of morality advises a young woman to be deceitful because deceit will bring her riches... Why should I be surprised, Emily Yoffe writes for Slate, doesn't she?

Dave said...

The scholarship itself is unethical because giving or taking money on the basis of race rather than merit is unjust. Receiving money under false pretenses is worse, but in this case growing up believing herself to be Hispanic is mitigating. She shouldn't take it and more importantly it shouldn't be offered in the first place. However self sacrifice for principle is exceedingly rare and I wouldn't expect her to be able to maintain such a high ethical standard. I think it's wrong but venial.

edutcher said...

Affirmative action is a big scam kept alive by the diversity industry.

Since Hispanic is a linguistic and cultural distinction, if all the Spanish you know is from old John Wayne movies, you probably qualify.

traditionalguy said...

Many young spanish sailors swam ashore in Ireland and started families with the local girls when The Armada went down. Are they Irish or Hispanic?

They are Black Irish, like me.

On my mother's side.

PS My father's family believed its roots were German-English, to the point that my aunt (born 1887) once told me a lawyer came to see her family when she was a little girl to investigate whether they were the owners of Hyde Park in London.

Doing some of my own research, I have found out the family is Dutch (we knew there was some in there) and the family name Anglicized from a Dutch name.

cubanbob said...

Most Hispanics don't like term hispanic or Latino. They identify themselves with their nationality.

This whole AA thing is a fraud from the jumped. A blue eyed blond Argentinian of German and or English descent doesn't consider themselves the same as a Guatemalan Indian. Yet both are for AA purposes Hispanic. When it comes to AA for Hispanics, it really is a code word for Indian.

Hagar said...

"Black Irish" are more likely due to the genes from the pre-Celtic Hibernian population.

Mitch H. said...

Wow, it's the "free money" fallacy, red in tooth and claw, let loose in the civilized confines of the Slate advice column!

edutcher said...

Hagar said...

"Black Irish" are more likely due to the genes from the pre-Celtic Hibernian population.

It makes a better story that the survivors of the Armada swam ashore and made common cause with all the English-hating Irish girls.

Hagar said...

The Irish are great for stories, and some of them even have a grain of truth to them.

Richard Dolan said...

"[M]y biological father was Mediterranean, maybe Armenian."

This sounds a bit geographically challenged, wouldn't you say? Armenia is nowhere near the Mediterranean. The confusions in this person's background are evidently deeper that she knows (I'm assuming we are talking about a young lady since the story involves someone writing to an 'advice' column -- not really a guy thing to do).

Bryan C said...

She should take it. If there were a scholarship set aside for "Aryans", would it be unethical for a Gypsy to apply? The concept of "hispanic" is nonsense on stilts and doesn't dignify treatment as a legitimate qualifier.

I get twitchy over racial checkboxes. I typical choose "Other" or if I'm in a bad mood, just select different multiple boxes at random each time. It gets you on some interesting mailing lists.

walter said...

With the web, education should be made affordable enough to skip the "scholarship" distortion. Or at least limit it to actual scholastic achievement. But no one wants to admit scholarships cost shift. Education you pay for is a product. Anyone comfortable with multiple price tags at the car dealership?

wyo sis said...

There's a word people use to make these decisions: integrity. If you have it you do what's right and let the consequences be whatever they are. If you don't you don't. If you have no integrity go ahead and do whatever you want to.
The standards of the people surrounding you are what they are. Your standards are what matters to your integrity, but it goes beyond that, because even when we say or act as if we have lower standards we somehow know when we're being shabby.
If you want to feel whole be honest with yourself. What you can tell the world is something different.

Nathan Alexander said...

Did anyone have the courage and/or stupidity to read any of the other advice Prudence gave?

The next one was...indescribable.

A lady said that as a youth,she had a tutor that did something creepy, but never even came close to sexual harassment or assault. She convinced her parents to fire the tutor.
Now, years later, she has heard from 2 other females that he acted creepy around them...though, again, nothing even ambiguously illegal.
She asked what she should do.
Prudence recommends calling the police.

Yep: creepy + no illegal behavior whatsoever is now a criminal offense to Prudence.

Donald said...

How is it possible that this thread has progressed this far without a reference to Soul Man?

ken in sc said...

I once checked 'other' on a HR form and wrote in 'Alabama Redneck'. I was called in and told I had to change it.

ken in sc said...

My ancestors settled in South Carolina in 1788. One of them fought with Andrew Jackson and received land grants in Alabama as a veteran's benefit. I claim both states. My people are originally from County Antrim in Ulster. I guess I already got my affirmative action.

bgates said...

What would the people who founded the scholarship say?


Probably "Por La Raza todo, Fuera de La Raza nada".

Kirk Parker said...

Freeman,

"Isn't Prudie the one who gave the horrible advice to the soon to be cuckolded husband not long ago?"

I'm guessing the bad advice wasn't "Buy a gun"? :-)

Methadras said...

So lying is justified advice to steal taxpayer dollars from the government. Bravo Government, you've done your job well.

Blue@9 said...

We are we wasting our time scrutinizing the ethics of the person who's thinking of taking the scholarship, instead of the people who are offering it on those terms?

Best comment, right there.

That being said, I say take the scholarship. She isn't lying because she is Hispanic. As others have mentioned, it's not a racial classification.

Saint Croix said...

What Republicans should do, with the 2020 census, is to stop asking American citizens what their race is. Stop asking, stop counting, stop giving a shit about it.

Liberals will freak the fuck out.

MrCharlie2 said...

My reaction, which I don't like, is yes she should take it. We live in a world of distortions, they will slap you down sometimes, so take the crumbs when they fall in your path. I know we will all pay for this crap in the end, but some principles are for people with trust funds.

MadisonMan said...

Is it ethical to take it? No. Should I take it? That's an entirely different question.

John Lynch said...

My mother is from Peru, but I (obviously) have an Irish surname. Am I Hispanic?

My wife is African/Korean, so our son is White/African/Hispanic/Asian.

He checks all the boxes, but has the same last name as I do. What ethnic group gets to claim him? Just two generations of multiracial marriage reveal what a crock all this is.

It's all nonsense. Check the damn box if it benefits you. I did. It's you or someone even less deserving.

Teri said...

Tibore said...
Weren't scholarships at one time rewards for accomplishment instead of identity?

I mean, seriously. Wouldn't the better course overall be about who earns a trip to college via accomplishment? Or is such just considered old-fashioned, out-of-date thinking nowadays?


Yes, Tibore, indeed, you are extremely old-fashioned. My son won a $2,000 scholarship in high school for a story he wrote. I was thrilled, proudly displayed the acrylic trinket, and when time came, sent the paperwork to the school, very happy to have the additional funds.

Imagine my surprise when I found that they reduced his other financial aid by $2,000 so the total amount was the same as it was originally. I called to find out what the @#$% was going on. Turns out to be federal law, if you’re going to take federal aid you can only receive the amount allowed by your family finances. (And yes, financial aid is a scam and welfare and all of that, but let me tell my story.)

I argued with the guy, said what was the point of getting the scholarship, why wasn’t my son getting any benefit for his accomplishment? I swear to God, he said, “Well, it wouldn’t be fair to the others, you know, not everybody is smart enough to be able to do that, so it wouldn’t be fair for him to get more money just because he’s smart.”

I could barely choke the words out, but I asked him, “Do you know what the word “scholarship” means?”

He literally, and I mean literally, did not know that scholarships used to be the way that poor but smart boys were able to get educations. He had never made any connection between “scholar” and “scholarship.”

Nowadays, the only students who would actually benefit from an outside-the-school scholarship would be someone whose parents are so well off that the student doesn’t qualify for federal financial aid. The word has absolutely been twisted to the complete opposite meaning.

MadisonMan said...

@Nathan Alexander, if that guy had done that to my daughter, yes, I'd want him investigated as well. That's what police do. Being creepy with a lot of little girls raises tons of red flags in my book.

As to the not-Hispanic kid, a relevant question would be: If you're adopted by a Hispanic, what are you as far as a College Scholarship application is? My read is that the mother had an affair, or became pregnant, by the Armenian, and then married the Hispanic, and Mr. Hispanic adopted the girl, or just treated her as her daughter. Is she therefore Hispanic?

The Gold Digger said...

What Republicans should do, with the 2020 census, is to stop asking American citizens what their race is.

I did not complete the "race" field in the 2010 census. The census bureau called me four times trying to get an answer. I refused each time.

Maybe I should have told them I was Hispanic. After all, I speak, read, and write Spanish fluently and lived nine years in Chile, Panama, and Spain.

David said...

A moral person would not have to ask the question.

Iuconnu said...

Which one is more hispanic - a person with an Hispanic surname who speaks no Spanish or one with an Anglo surname who speaks no English?

No wonder the government requires nothing but an assertion to qualify as Hispanic. They've put themselves in a position that would give Adolf Eichmann headaches. I wouldn't be surprised to learn that anyone can legally claim any racial heritage, not just Hispanic, at any time by the simple means of asserting it.

Hispanic is truly not a racial category at all. Mexico is full of Germans and Austrians that arrived there at the same time as their relatives were arriving here.

As for the morality of making such a claim for financial advantage, government is not a moral enterprise - most especially not our government. I would take anything I could get by any means likely to succeed and call it payback. Anyone who would not is just a chump.