This week, the new immigration law will go into effect in Arizona and many changes are already being seen in the streets of most major cities. The most conspicuous is that lowriders are no longer seen in most Mexican neighborhoods. The customized cars have either been garaged or brought back over the border to Mexico. In their place are smaller, less flashy automobiles such as Honda Civics and Kia Rios.
Mexicans are trying their best to blend into the American fabric. Taco stands are being shuttered, and homes that once emitted the wonderful aroma of chili peppers and corn tortillas now give off a distinct smell of fried chicken and apple pie.
Even the names of businesses are changing. Instead of Chico's Used Tires and Juanita's Beauty Barn, names like Sam's Barber Shoppe and National Tire Warehouse are springing up in their place. Said one resident of Tempe, Arizona, "You'd think you stepped off a train right into a Norman Rockwell painting. There isn't one sign of a Mexican living here for miles. What an incredible transformation."
While no one is sure these changes will actually benefit the millions of Mexicans living in the State of Arizona, one has to wonder how long anyone, Mexican or otherwise, can go without listening to some authentic mariachi music. As one person put it, "Most of the changes can be tolerated for long periods of time by the Mexicans, but denying a Mexican music from his homeland may just be what ultimately brings them down."