Tangy, Tasty, Hot Enough To Conquer The Conquerors The Fda Says Salsa Is A Vegetable. It's Really A Weapon.

Posted: July 05, 1998

It's a dance! It's a weapon! It's a vegetable!

It's salsa, the Meso-American gift to the culinary world.

Now salsa has been declared a vegetable by the Clinton Agriculture Department.

In the early '80s, the Ronald Reagan Agriculture Department tried to label ketchup a vegetable for school lunch programs, just as the Clinton Ag people have done with salsa. Looking at a ketchup label, I find the only differences between ketchup and salsa are that ketchup doesn't have chile and has corn syrup.

Despite these tiny differences, the Reagan administration was keel-hauled and lambasted all over the map by the American liberal, educational and child-protection establishments. ``Criminal'' was but one of the milder epithets hurled at what the disgraced former Democrat muckety-muck, Clark Clifford, referred to as ``the amiable dunce,'' Ronald Reagan.

The furor lasted and lasted and lasted. The furor was silly then and the proof is this very salsa anointment.

But salsa is more than a vegetable.

It is a weapon, perhaps the most devastating weapon in the war to retake America for Hispanics, the original European owners of more than three-fourths of what is now the United States.

Guns, missiles, tanks and grenades are useless in this war, the Reconquest, la Reconquista of the lost territories. The continuing and growing popularity of salsa is essential to the plans of the Reconquista conspirators.

Food, you see, is a weapon. Especially when one speaks of tasty, wholesome, healthy, spicy Mexican food. What a weapon. Tacos, enchiladas, tamales, beans, rice, burritos, chimichangas - except the latter two aren't well known south of the great Mexican desert. No, these Northern Mexican and desert-born gourmet items are native to the North and to the former Mexican territories of Texas, New Mexico and California. Yes! The very territories being retaken by the onslaught of salsa and jalapenos.

Next, we'll see McTacos and McBurritos with McSalsa. We'll see double enchiladas with cheese and stuffed-with-Jack cheese jalapenos. There will be taco stands with drive-through windows, walk-in taco shacks, converted failed hamburger stands painted with orange and yellow paint and named some variation of Roberto's, Hilberto's, Alberto's and Adalberto's. Fancy sit-down restaurants will all have the ever-present salsa. It will be eaten by the addicted, the very addicted who will turn the country over to the Reconquistas.

Salsa, like almost all Mexican food, is addictive. Who can deny the delights of a chicken enchilada smothered with sour cream, guacamole and salsa, who? A ripe avocado, crushed garlic, chopped tomatoes and onions, chopped cilantro, lime or lemon juice and, my favorite, chopped pine nuts all mixed together into a butter-like consistency. Having originated in ancient Mexico, the avocado and its ultimate concoction, guacamole, is a Reconquista weapon second only to salsa.

In September, salsa will be in almost every school where there is a lunch program. Each child will now be addicted to salsa. Then they will become warriors of the Reconquista, too. Little children selling out their parents and country because of salsa. We'll know the Reconquista has triumphed when ketchup is number two.

Victory. The Reconquista of the lost territories, the hispanization of the United States of America by salsa, guacamole and other Mexican food. What a delicious thought.

Raoul Lowery Contreras is a journalist and talk-show host in San Diego.

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