Best T-shirts Ever

A student at Sonoma High School wants to collect enough t-shirts with college logos to give a class of first generation fifth graders. Why? So they will start thinking about going to college. This is a cool idea. A writer friend, who also happens to be Latina, shared the student’s post on her Facebook page.
I decided I would help the young man and hit my favorite thrift store to find him some shirts. I didn’t have much luck at the one in my town, but I did fill up a medium sized mailing box from the USPS.
Yesterday I tried again at a bigger thrift store two towns down. I flipped through 100 t-shirts on the teen rack and was appalled at what I found:
20 with glitter
20 with attitude
20 regional shirts (I love NY, Maui)
30 with store or company brands (GAP, American Eagle)
8 with sex appeal (blue-eyed bombshell, Oakland booty)
2 with college logos.
It’s no wonder my prairie dress business did so well with moms of young girls. It is a throwback to the olden days, unlike the rack of crap I had just looked through.
I went to the men’s department and found ten college t-shirts in about five minutes.
Now I have a bigger box to send to Juan.
A lot of my old white-guy friends think the country is going to hell in a hand basket. The current administration notwithstanding, the country is going to be okay. But its population is definitely changing. Where old white guys used to be the rule, now people of color are going to be the future. That’s right, folks, By about 2050 or so, people of Hispanic heritage will be the majority group in the USA. I know this because I read a lot, and I track this stuff. It’s how I convinced New York to buy my little picture books with Spanish in them twenty-two years ago. I got a lot of resistance at first. One agent even said that Latinos don’t read books. I dropped that agent.
Another said Ferdinand wasn’t that big of a hit — a book from the 1930’s. Now it’s a movie.
Pixar’s Coco just won an Academy Award. It’s about Day of the Dead in Mexico.
I get a Google Alert practically every day, not because I am famous or anything, but because libraries all over the country are using my books for their story times. Three out of every five children younger than kindergarten age are Hispanic, so librarians are choosing books with Spanish to read to them.
White people in this country are dying off at a faster rate than they are being replaced with white babies. Hispanic people are being born in the USA at a greater rate than they are dying off. I’m not talking about illegal immigrants. I am talking about children born to U.S. citizens.
So old white guys, all I can say is you should’ve had more babies.
No wall along the southern border of the U.S. will change the population shift happening. It has been coming for decades, and those who study and follow these things know it. Even I know it, because I keep up with all things Latino.
Why? Because I write books with Spanish. I didn’t plan any of this. It’s called being in the right place at the right time, me, a white woman from Iowa.
Juan, look for a big box of t-shirts from me. I like the way you think. First generation fifth graders should be introduced to the abstract concept that they can go to college.
After all, they are the future of the USA.

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