Saturday, April 23, 2011

The Meaning of Con Safos

          So to clear up what Con Safos means and what it stands for, it originated as a chicano term thats best described in Jose Antonio Burciaga’s Drink Cultura. "At one time or another many of us have seen the c/s sign-off on Chicano 'placas' and graffiti in the Southwest or Midwest. It's a very common Chicano symbol but its true origin and significance is nebulous. It is not a Mexican symbol but a Chicano, a Mexican-American, symbol. Its origin is unknown but, like the 'Pachuco', it probably originated in South El Paso's 'Segundo Barrio'. The c/s sign-off means 'con safos', and translates literally as "with safety." It was meant as a safety precaution, a barrio copyright, patent pending. No one else could use or dishonor the graffiti. It was an honorable code of conduct, a literary imprimatur. Like saying "amen," it ended discussion. Above all, it meant, "anything you say against me will bounce back to you." ... Some Chicanos will also end a placa, graffiti, with the message 'con o sin safos', which means that with or without safety, with or without this code, whether you like it or not, whether you insult me back or not, this placa, insult or praise, stands."
          To underscore Burciaga, Mi Con Safos is a safe space blog and outlet for people of color, mujeres, LGBTQ folks, and all marginalized communities to explore the intersections of our identities, experiences, stories, feelings, and struggles. I hope readers are able to feel, relate, and are empowered by the submissions. I ask you to share yours as well. Sumbit your piece to be posted (with your name or anonymous) mail to: Feel free to share poems, writings, short stories, photos, etc., anything that tells your reality.

Mi Con Safos Editor, Alec

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