I think I'm a Latino

Anthony Pignataro: That’s right, folks, it looks like I’m actually a Latino. I never knew this before today, but the evidence looks pretty solid. It comes straight from  state Senator Gil Cedillo, D-Los Angeles,  in the form of an e-mail he just sent on behalf of Jerry Brown’s gubernatorial fundraising arm:

“Yesterday, I joined Latino leaders from across California, including State Senate Majority Leader Dean Florez, and LA City Council President Eric Garcetti, to annouce our support for Jerry Brown’s campaign for Governor,” Cedillo wrote in the July 9 e-mail.

My first thought after reading that was, Garcetti’s a Latino?! I always thought he was an Italian (which constitutes most of my heritage as well). So does this mean Frank Sinatra and Sylvester Stallone are also Latinos?

But now as I read over that rather clumsy sentence another time, I’m not so sure. I mean, that comma after “Florez” and then again after “Garcetti” might be indicating that Cedillo is separating out Garcetti from the “Latino leaders” he has joined. But if that’s the case, why just name Florez?

I mean, Cedillo clearly says he met with “leaders” — which is plural. That’s like me saying I have pictures of all sorts of dead presidents in my wallet, including George Washington. Does that really tell you a lot about my financial situation?

Reading over the sentence a third time, I just noticed that Cedillo used “and” instead of “as well as” after he mentioned Florez. “And” implies that he met with Latino Leader #1 (Florez) AND THEN Latino Leader #2 (Garcetti). To be really clear, if he met with a group of “Latino leaders” in addition to Garcetti — say, they were all sitting around a table at some swanky LA cafe and then Garcetti happened to walk by and pledge his support for Candidate Brown — then the way to phrase that would have been something like:

Yesterday, I joined Latino leaders from across California, including State Senate Majority Leader Dean Florez, AS WELL AS LA City Council President Eric Garcetti blah blah blah…

Well, glad that’s all straightened out.

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