Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Standing Tall And Firm

There are 56 days left until the March primaries, and February will see a special election to settle the city council District 2 seat.  The latter is the result of Esteban Rangel relinquishing his throne to run for county commissioner.  I've seen a smattering of campaign activity on the streets and on social media.  The big push should be close at hand.

In the meantime, we can collectively shake our heads (or not, it's up to you) at the latest in local political happenings: Abraham Diaz, aka El Protector, is suing the local Democratic party chair because he can't place his nickname on the ballot.    

The short in all of this is:

  • Abraham Diaz filed paperwork to run for constable
  • Diaz wanted "El Protector" nickname to appear on ballot
  • State law dictates that nicknames have to be short and one word
  • Local officials acted and removed the nickname
  • Diaz was notified, but not in time to make change
  • Lawsuit hurled

By my tally, using a nickname for one's political dealings is a border thing.  More unusual than that is that I'm the only one who hates that practice.  But who am I to stop the Chilos, Wawis, and Rudys of the world.  If they want to include a nickname in their political platform to compensate for not having an actual campaign platform, then so be it.

What's interesting with Mr. Diaz's plight is that he's been through this before.  In 2012 he ran for the same position, that of Constable Pct. 1; And he apparently used the nickname 'PROTECTOR.'  Unfortunately, he had his aliasS handed to him.  The 'protector' went up against a 'rudy' and a 'jimmy.'  El Rudy won out in that one.  Here we are four years later and "El Protector" wants another crack at him.  

What I want to know is who made the clerical error this time around in filling out the paperwork with the proper EL PROTECTOR, instead of the unremarkable PROTECTOR from 2012?  Did somebody correct Diaz in time in 2012?  Was he smarter then than he is now?  Does he know how foolish all this is?

This is important for Mr. Diaz.  He wants to continue serving the community, and I for one wish him all the best, past shortcomings notwithstanding.  But how vital is his nickname anyway?  It's not like it was prominently displayed on his campaign signs in 2012.  Laredo voters are probably smart enough to know that he's the person that used to go by the handle "El Protector."  You have to give them a little credit, or worse yet, get out there and speak to them face to face.

Local races are sometimes won by razor thin margins, so every little thing helps, I suppose.  However, instead of fretting over the none-use of his nickname, he should be out meeting with potential voters and making the case for his campaign and his real name.  Enough with nicknames in the political arena.  Let's leave them for more pedestrian circles or the obituary pages.  Let's move on.


  1. I say if the rudys, wawis and chilos of laredo can use them.... let him use it... we all know all of them anyways... they are not new to this city... besides... with low voter turnouts and political schemes in office.... who they want in office will BE in office....

  2. It's a practice that, unfortunately, has no end in sight. Like you said, we know who Abraham Diaz is; Just go with your own name and state your case to the voters.

  3. El Protector would be too long for the rules, that was why he had used Protector before & wanted to use it now. What I don't get is... was this a work related nickname? I say it's part of his identity but I don't have a sayso.

  4. You're the one known as El Protector; that doesn't mean people are going to vote for you. Stop the nickname insanity.