Average and Boring Latina in America

17 Responses to “Average and Boring Latina in America”

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  1. I am honored to be cited in your blog. Thank you so much for adding it, and for sharing this excellent post.

  2. Monica Vila says:

    This is 100% exactly correct – indeed I also laughed out loud! After 20+ years living here, developing great friendships, having children, paying taxes, exercising my right to vote and more, I still feel more like a ‘welcome guest’ when I see news reports about Latinos in the US. I do not relate to illegal aliens although I feel for their plight nor do I belong to the elite or intellectual community of Latino thought leaders. I am exactly in the middle proud of both, my heritage and my nationality as American.

  3. Raul says:

    You answered the question yourself, Carrie. Our boring stories don’t sell.
    The so-called “news networks” don’t really care too much about news. Their focus is more on entertainment and propaganda. Pick your political affiliation and they’ll give you an army of pundits to spoon-feed you whatever you like to hear. For the “human connection” they’ll throw in “opinion leaders” who will yell, cry, or sell their soul for a few viewers. For added value they’ll throw in the latest high-tech graphics, charts, bells and whistles.
    The result: high-tech fake news delivered by clowns. Which is not even original: the Romans invented that long ago. They called it bread and circus.

  4. Carrie says:

    Julio, you’ve done a great job of getting the stories written and shared…
    Monica, totally ditto.
    Raul, I hear you…and remember, I was the media once. They do indeed follow formulas and promote stereotype sometimes, but good reporting usually fixes all the assumptions and creates a pretty balanced package. At least that is the usual outcome…I just expected more this time. Boba, yo.

    I also want to add this: I belong to a group of immigrants who arrived to open arms, and a much different climate as Mel Martinez’s story showed. (though my parents do talk of difficult times and ugly words.) So, I really wanted to put it out there, that I get how lucky my family, and other Cubans, have been and how pathetically horribly other Latinos have had it when it comes to immigration and assimilation. I really don’t want this post to give anyone the idea that I discount their trials.

    Paz y pa’lante.

  5. nydia says:

    Thanks, Carrie-
    I’m humbled by the mention. And thank you for your very seasoned perspective and sense of humor. Great piece!

  6. Max Macias says:

    Great post hermana!

  7. Mike Robles says:

    Thank you for voicing your opinion.

    Great blog!

    Mike

  8. Raul says:

    Carrie, I have to say I don’t watch much TV, but whenever I have turned to one of the news channels they usually have some talking head who makes me want to cry.
    Newspapers, that’s a different story. I have more respect for them. I get all my news from the papers, which have their editorial line, but in general are not so ridiculously biased…

  9. Carrie says:

    Thanks, guys! Glad to host you here in the Boonies por un rato.

    Y Raul, my friend in paper love, I think this is why I like you so much.

  10. John says:

    Soledad O’Brien is such a phony. In April 2008, Reverend Jeremiah Wright gave a speech in Detroit to the NAACP.  One of the things that  he said in this speech was that black and white children learn with different parts of their brain, and then gave an “unflattering imitation of the way white pastors speak.”  Peoples comments were that he gave a racial speech. Soledad  O’Brien, on CNN, was quoted as saying, in a gushing manner, that the speech was a “home run” and “really funny.” When questioned about the things he said in the speech, she would say things like, what he really meant was …..or what he wanted to say was… Once again she’s covering the truth and being racist.  Just as with the Henry Gates incident.  In an appearance on Anderson Cooper, the night or so before CNN’s “The Moment of Truth” she appeared enraged that it was a racial profile against Gates. She said that she got calls from her FRIENDS saying it was all about Gates being black.  She went on that show with the purpose, at all costs, to destroy the credibility of the white police officer and throw him under the bus.  When Cooper was talking she wanted to make the point that Gates said “Thank You” to the police officers.  By mentioning that, she was purposely misrepresenting the truth by playing down Gates’ belligerence and racial remarks, which she didn’t even mention.  Even Gates’ attorney and friend, said to the media that he used very strong language. Colon Powell and President Obama both said he should take blame in the incident.  I have seen this in many occasions with her, where she doesn’t speak the truth and hides the true facts.  Another time on Anderson Cooper, Cooper said to O’Brien that Senator John McCain hasn’t brought race into the campaign, like he said he wouldn’t.  You would think her response would have been something like, that’s great because he shouldn’t.  Instead she strongly insinuated that he would, even in the last week of the campaign. Also, her questioning style, in interviews  is completely different with a white person than it is with a black person.  Like in her interview with Henry Gates in “The Moment of Truth”  She just went along with his lies. I have seen several comments on various websites about her racism.  There are many other examples I could give of her racial bias, dishonesty and hypocrisy. She seems to consider herself to be black. She mentioned in an interview that her parents made it clear to her “you’re black” and that’s all there is to it.
    She’s all about being #1, she wants the world to revolve around her. She comes first, before her family. She wants to be a celebrity figure and a star. In interviews she says she works 6 days a week, mostly out of town, and on some holidays. She goes to gala events, concerts, lots of entertainment events, as a single woman, leaving her husband and kids behind.
    I think Soledad O’Brien is a very poor journalist. What ever happened to the days of CNN with Bernard Shaw and Judy Woodruff? T hey were honorable journalists. You could believe what they said. John Las Vegas

  11. Did you watch CNN’s Black in America? It was basically the same thing. Lots of stories about jail time, selling drugs, addict moms, absentee dads, high school drop outs, etc. Obviously these are all real (and important) issues facing the black community, but they’re not our only stories! I don’t see myself and my friends and family in that narrative, but it’s not interesting to talk about black folks who have MBAs, are happily married, and want the same things for themselves and their kids that the average white middle class person wants.

  12. Lesley says:

    Hi there: I stumbled on your blog from the Wise Latinas Facebook page. Loved this entry. I live in Mexico City, so I haven’t seen the entire LIA series, but I did see a snippet of it at the gym a few weeks ago, where a young woman who was about to be deported and separated from her child. I was actually really glad to see a major network treating immigrants as humans. But yeah: Why aren’t the rest of our stories being told?

    The last sentence of your post hit home to me: how does one even attempt to capture the experiences of 51 million Latinos, many of whom come from different cultural backgrounds? (I’m Mexican-American, by the way.) I know Soledad’s series was flawed, but she should still get a little bit of props for being one of the few high-profile news personalities even attempting to shed light on the Latino experience. Everyone had high hopes for this series, but it’s almost like they were going to be dashed in the end no matter what, because she’s only one woman, and because we’re all so hungry, because no one else is talking about us.

    The networks and news media, if they change, will do so at a snail’s pace, so I think the real challenge is on us here. (Us being the boring, average Latinos in the U.S.) :-) How do we make sure our stories are told? How do we spread the word? All the brouhaha over the series makes me wonder how *we* can start controlling the debate, and not the other way around.

    Thanks for such a thoughtful post. You got me thinking this morning, and it’s not even 10 a.m.!

  13. Carrie says:

    John, thanks for stopping by. I almost deleted your post because it is harsher than what I go for here, and I don’t agree with personal attacks. Please be aware of that if you come back…

    Elita, I only saw part of Black in America. After watching Latino in America, I figured they probably ran into the same problems attempting to capture the “black experience.”

    Lesley, thanks for stopping by here from Wise Latinas. Love them. And, for sure, props for the massive attempt.
    I think “we” control this debate by being some damn fine examples of the boring, fabulous, new face of Middle America!

  14. Sam says:

    There is no racial and ethnic divide going on in Shenandoah, Pa. The media portrays it that way in order to sell the story. If the media told the real truth, no one would watch. The truth is that Latino’s have lived here for more than 20 years. Several own businesses, many own homes.

    Visit Shenandoah and see how children from all ethnic backgrounds participate in sports together. How you can find people of all colors at our community fund raisers and how Heritage day brings the entire town together for a day of sharing. Don’t judge our town by what the news wants you to think, visit and find out for yourself. There is no racial and ethnic divide going on in Shenandoah, Pa.

  15. Lisel Laslie says:

    “We wanted to include a diverse group of Latinos whose stories and experiences enhance the documentary in a way that’s candid and insightful,” says Jody Gottlieb, executive director of CNN Productions– uummmm, I think that she got this about 1/4 right.

    In order to include a diverse group, they would have had to include a lot more Latino people in their report.

    My growing up in the US as a “Latino” really was no different than my husbands childhood- he is Gringito- we both experienced the same things as children and had similar upbringings. The biggest differences between us is that I am lucky enough to fluently speak, read and write a second beautiful language, I can cook a mean Lechoncito y arroz con frijoles, and I can shake my colita with the best of the salseros!
    Have I experienced racism- sure! Who among us has not, and with this I mean not only Latinos, but those folks within the black community, our Asian brothers and sisters and even regular ol’ white folk. Every single human being has the ability to discriminate against another for no real reason at all…until we start to treat each other as we would like to be treated, then this will not change.
    I think CNN gave it the good old college try- and it’s a good place to start- but we need more visibility, more compassion, more action– simply MORE!

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