Talk about an epic prank! Jose Barrientos, a 26-year-old community college student, tricked his entire public speaking class into believing he was a foreigner after faking a strong Mexican accent for four whole months! When he finally revealed himself, the class was obviously completely stunned...not to mention, pretty confused. So why did Barrientos pull such a stunt?

Apparently, the whole guise started when Barrientos began his Speech 101 class at Los Angeles City College in late August. As the teacher called his name, Barrientos made the spur-of-the-moment decision to change his identity. He spoke with a strong accent, gave presentations on supposedly coming from a long line of piñata makers and shared tales of how he would ride to school on a donkey in his homeland. And apparently, the class believed his exaggerated stories, given their reactions in a viral YouTube video that shows Barrientos revealing the truth.

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In the clip, Barrientos stands at the front of the class and takes a sip from a special drink he claims will make his accent go away. After drinking, he begins to speak in his normal voice, leaving the rest of the students absolutely--and understandably--shocked.

So why did Barrientos go along with his performance for so long? "I realized I could say anything and people would say, 'Oh, he's a foreigner.' People equate intelligence with an accent. They think someone with a British accent is more erudite or sophisticated than someone with a Mexican accent," he told the U.K. Daily Mail. Barrientos went on to explain that he "shattered" the notion that he's "some simple Hispanic guy."

Wow! First of all, I'm kind of amazed that he was able to pull this off for so long. That takes some serious commitment. But also, as bizarre as his stunt was, I have to say his reason behind doing it actually makes a lot of sense to me. Though it's not always the case, there are definitely instances where I've seen others take people--including some of my own family members--with strong Hispanic accents less seriously or brush away certain behavior by thinking, "Oh, he's a foreigner"...which just isn't fair.

Though Barrientos might have had a very roundabout way of proving that, his experiment is still extremely eye-opening, especially to those who don't even realize they are thinking of people differently based on the way they speak.

Now, let's just hope his teacher is able to recognize that and grade him accordingly!

Image via YouTube

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About the author

Michelle Regalado is a Staff Writer at MamásLatinas. She loves reading, travel, pop culture, and writing about anything and everything.

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