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Cinco de Mayo: A Great Libertarian Anti-imperialist Holiday!

Most people do not know the origins of Cinco de Mayo (The Fifth of May) and at the risk of being accused of cultural appropriation, no it is not Mexican Independence Day but rather is celebrates the defeat of the French army in 1862 (yes May 5!):

Contrary to popular belief, Cinco de Mayo is not Mexico’s independence day. Mexican independence is celebrated Sept.16.

Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Mexican army’s unlikely victory over the French forces of Napoleon III on May 5, 1862, at the Battle of Puebla.

Mexico had trouble paying back war debts to European countries, and France had come to Mexico to collect that debt.

Here is another article from

Certain that success would come swiftly, 6,000 French troops under General Charles Latrille de Lorencez set out to attack Puebla de Los Angeles, a small town in east-central Mexico. From his new headquarters in the north, Juárez rounded up a ragtag force of 2,000 loyal men—many of them either indigenous Mexicans or of mixed ancestry—and sent them to Puebla.

The vastly outnumbered and poorly supplied Mexicans, led by Texas-born General Ignacio Zaragoza, fortified the town and prepared for the French assault. On May 5, 1862, Lorencez gathered his army—supported by heavy artillery—before the city of Puebla and led an assault.

The battle lasted from daybreak to early evening, and when the French finally retreated they had lost nearly 500 soldiers. Fewer than 100 Mexicans had been killed in the clash.

The French did win the war, (we were distracted crushing the attempt of the Southern states to achieve independence) establishing the Empire of Mexico but it was a short-lived victory.  President Juarez led the Mexicans to victory over Archduke Ferdinand Maximilian, the Emperor of Mexico.

So it is a great day to spread the word about liberty and anti-imperialism!  I did so in fact at my church’s monthly men’s breakfast!  And if you are anywhere near Crete Nebraska or have say five Lincolns handy, fight for liberty this Cinco de Mayo and help Senator Laura Ebke!


About Elwood Sanders

Elwood "Sandy" Sanders is a Hanover attorney who is an Appellate Procedure Consultant for Lantagne Legal Printing and has written ten scholarly legal articles. Sandy was also Virginia's first Appellate Defender and also helped bring curling in VA! (None of these titles imply any endorsement of Sanders’ views)

One Response to “Cinco de Mayo: A Great Libertarian Anti-imperialist Holiday!”


  1. […] almost forgot. I happened to see the date this AM and realized: It’s Cinco de Mayo! Go here for some background on this anti-imperialist holiday – not Mexican independence day […]

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Tom White Says:

Nothing is more conservative than a republican wanting to get their majority back. And nothing is more liberal than a republican WITH a majority.

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