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  • Publicado : 26 de febrero de 2012
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Chicago – the melting pot that fuses the unique characteristics of newcomers from all over the world into a diverse America seems to be cooling – at least when it comes to Latinos.
or should I sayHispanics? Chicanos? Some are increasingly reaching way back into the heritage vault and talking on the label of ‘native American’ in a nod to their indigenous ancestors from the Americas (detractorsin the blogosphere sometimes refer to them as ‘indigenazis’).
And let’s not forget those who actually have ties to Spain and don’t mind when someone calls them Spanish – a term considered fightingwords to those who still hold a grudge against the conquistadores.
I bring this up because of a full –bore Latino identity crisis typified by obsessive conversations about labels. Across the country,Latinos are immersing themselves in challenging debates about who they are, who they want to be, what they’ll call themselves and, most importantly, what they want others to call them.
Insert snorehere.
Really, there are so many important issues that Hispanics are up against right now – lack of jobs, inadequate education levels, the obesity epidemic – you’d think there would be little time tospend on a discussion that should be simple: identify as Americans first and consider your ethnic subgroup a less important data point, relax, the census bureau is not out to ‘get’ you.
But no. to some,the word ‘american’ is a loaded term used callously by U.S. residents who always conveniently forget that Canada, Mexico and Central and South America are part of ‘the americans’ and well you seewhat the melting pot is up against.
So why the label mania? I simply attribute it to the ‘me generation’ mentality: everyone is special in his or her own way and self – esteem, individuality and self –expression matter above all other things. But others blame long – term institutional racism.
In a recently published paper, ‘perpetuating the marginalization of Latinos’ a collateral consequence of...
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