In her police file photo, the innocent Hispanic cartoon heroine has a black eye, a split lip and a bloody nose.
What is the alleged crime of Dora the Explorer? “Resisting arrest while crossing the border illegally.”
The image, one of several circulating after Arizona passed a controversial new immigration law, may seem harmless and silly, but
experts say the photos and the rhetoric surrounding the Internet, newspapers and public marches reveal the attitude of some Americans on issues of race, immigration and where it directs the immigration reform debate.
“Dora is like a blank screen on which people can project their thoughts and feelings about Latinos.
– Erynn Masi de Casanova, a professor of sociology at the University of Cincinnati.
The case of Dora has become the target of a debate that focuses on how policy makers should deal with the supposed 12 million illegal immigrants living in the United States.
For a decade, the Hispanic character of this child has taught millions of children the alphabet, colors and phrases in Spanish during a program on Nickelodeon’s TV channel across the globe. Her smiling face appears in all kinds of items, from backpacks to t-shirts, fruit bars.
But since the approval of the Arizona law, the life of Dora and her ‘status’ have been placed in the immigration spotlight. The new legislation requires the authorities to question people about their immigration status if there is reason to suspect that they may be in the United States illegally.
Many of the images of Dora are made assuming that the Hispanic girl’s character is that of an undocumented immigrant from Mexico.
A Facebook group named Dora the Explorer is sooooo and Illegal Immigrant stated the following reasons for such assumptions:
Ok, so here’s the deal… If you need the explanations they’re all around you…
1) She speaks spanish… she speaks spanish perfectly… what is she like…5? Her backpack even speaks spanish perfectly! (Of course the only place in the world known to speak Spanish is, you guessed it…Mexico)
2) That backpack of hers has EVERYTHING in it! And we’re talking everything! Life support, water/food, clothing for any weather, ropes, grappling hooks, shoes…. i mean c’mon! (Perfect for junping border fences or weathering the desert while waiting for your local border “coyote” to cross you into the U.S.)
3) She’s carrying a freaking ZOO with her! I mean, she has a monkey, an band of insects, a bajillion other animals! Really! What kind of legal immigrant has that many pets!? (and all in her backpack..OMG..Could she planning on using these animals to release crushing epidemics on all of America? Just think about it, what other use would she have for a monkey and bugs: Urban Yellow Fever, Malaria, Ebola, oh My…Surely she’s working with La Raza to overthrow America, right?)
4) She’s always on an “adventure” to transport a “package” to some destination and is always being stalked by a person trying to take that package… i mean… really, Swiper is so obviously some sort of border patrol person trying to collect evidence of Dora’s entire narcotics trafficking buisness… (Busted…You guessed it, Dora is actually a narco mule who runs the San Diego/Tijuana route now that “El Teo” Garcia is doing time)
For the time being, Dora the Explorer, seems to have plead the 5th. Nickelodeon representatives have also refused to comment on the history of Dora, her place of birth and citizenship have never been clear.