May 5th may seem like the perfect day to eat a million tacos and wear a sombrero, but we’re asking you to think again (only about the sombrero part, we love tacos). Why are we asking you to not wear a sombrero on Cinco de Mayo? Because Cinco De Mayo is not what you think it is (also cultural appropriation)! Well, that’s if you think it’s Mexico’s Independence Day. Because that’s not true at all.
Nope, Cinco de Mayo celebrates Mexico’s victory over France at the Battle of Puebla in 1862. And sadly, Cinco de Mayo is much less of a deal in Mexico than it is in the U.S. Cinco de May-NOPE.
What Cinco De Mayo actually celebrates:
In 1861, Benito Juárez was elected president of Mexico. The country was in trouble financially and Benito was forced to make debt payments to European governments. France, Britain, and Spain all sent their naval forces to Mexico to get their money. Britain and Spain negotiated with Mexico and left. France, on the other hand, was a little more difficult.
Ruled by Napoleon III, France used the opportunity to try to colonize Mexico. 6,000 French troops were sent to attack Puebla de Los Angeles, a small town in east-central Mexico. 2,000 Mexican men showed up to fight the French; and on May 5th, 1862, they won.