Culture

#HispanicsBreakTheInternet Shows Every Beautiful Side to Being Latino

The hashtag #HispanicsBreakTheInternet made a revival this past weekend, so much so that it was trending big time on Twitter.

This is the tweet that got the ball rolling on #HispanicsBreakTheInternet.

And damn, people really mobbed Twitter with stunning selfies.

The hashtag developed into tweets about the many things that make Latinos unique, amazing, and, of course, beautiful.

Speaking of beautiful:

You know someone’s mom and dad had to make an appearance.

While some used the trending topic to post selfies or to be silly, some took it much deeper.

Twitter user @QueerXiChisme wasn’t a fan of the choice to use “Hispanics” in the hashtag.

And he reminded his followers why:

Liza Sabater, social digital activist, also made sure people were informed about the term “Hispanic.”

Now, whether you’re a fan of the term “Hispanic” or not, the reality is we Latinos, Latinx (however you choose to identify), know how to represent.

Just remember, we’re never too late to break the internet.

READ: What Shall We Call Us? The Debate Around “Latinx” Continues

What makes Latinos beautiful to you? Tell us in the comments and hit the share button below! 

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From COVID To Elections, Here’s Why Misinformation Targets Latinos

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From COVID To Elections, Here’s Why Misinformation Targets Latinos

One of the big surprises of the 2020 election was how even though most Latino voters across the U.S. voted for Joe Biden, in some counties of competitive states like Florida and Texas, a higher-than-expected percentage of Latinos supported Donald Trump. One factor that many believe played a role: online misinformation about the Democratic candidate.

Another important subject that’s been victim of a massive misinformation campaign is the Coronavirus pandemic and the ongoing vaccination program. But why does #fakenews so heavily target the Latino community?

Since the 2020 campaign, a large misinformation campaign has target Latinos.

Although fake news is nothing new, in the campaign leading up to the 2020 elections it morphed into something more sinister – a campaign to influence Latino voters with false information. The largely undetected movement helped depress turnout and spread disinformation about Democrat Joe Biden.

The effort showed how social media and other technology can be leveraged to spread misinformation so quickly that those trying to stop it cannot keep up. There were signs that it worked as Donald Trump swung large numbers of Latino votes in the 2020 presidential race in some areas that had been Democratic strongholds.

Videos and pictures were doctored. Quotes were taken out of context. Conspiracy theories were fanned, including that voting by mail was rigged, that the Black Lives Matter movement had ties to witchcraft and that Biden was beholden to a cabal of socialists.

That flow of misinformation has only intensified since Election Day, researchers and political analysts say, stoking Trump’s baseless claims that the election was stolen and false narratives around the mob that overran the Capitol. More recently, it has morphed into efforts to undermine vaccination efforts against the coronavirus.

The misinformation campaign could have major impacts on our politics.

Several misinformation researchers say there is an alarming amount of misinformation about voter fraud and Democratic leaders being shared in Latino social media communities. Biden is a popular target, with misinformation ranging from exaggerated claims that he embraces Fidel Castro-style socialism to more patently false and outlandish ones, for instance that the president-elect supports abortion minutes before a child’s birth or that he orchestrated a caravan of Cuban immigrants to infiltrate the US Southern border and disrupt the election process.

Democratic strategists looking ahead to the 2022 midterm elections are concerned about how this might sway Latino voters in the future. They acknowledge that conservatives in traditional media and the political establishment have pushed false narratives as well, but say that social media misinformation deserves special attention: It appears to be a growing problem, and it can be hard to track and understand.

Some believe that Latinos may be more likely to believe a message shared by friends, family members, or people from their cultural community in a WhatsApp or Telegram group rather than an arbitrary mainstream US news outlet; research has found that people believe news articles more when they’re shared by people they trust.

Fake news is also impacting our community’s response to the pandemic.

Vaccination programs work best when as many people as possible get vaccinated, but Latinos in the United States are getting inoculated at lower rates.

In Florida, for example, Latinos are 27% of the population but they’ve made up only about 17% of COVID-19 vaccinations so far, according to an analysis by the Kaiser Family Foundation. And Latinos are relying on social media and word-of-mouth for information on vaccines — even when it’s wrong. There’s myths circulating around the vaccine, whether you can trust it and the possible the long-term effects.

And it’s not just obstacles to getting information in Spanish, but also in many of the native Mayan indigenous languages that farmworkers speak in South Florida.

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There’s A Fake Beauty Site For People To Report Domestic Violence While “Shopping”

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There’s A Fake Beauty Site For People To Report Domestic Violence While “Shopping”

Since the start of the pandemic, many communities have seen an increase in the amount of domestic violence reports. With more people staying at home under stay-at-home orders, many have been unable to escape their abusers. This has led to an increased need for resources for domestic assault victims.

Well, one teenager has thought up a pretty ingenious way to get that help into the hands of those who need it in a very discreet way.

Teen launches fake beauty site to help victims of domestic violence.

A teenager who was aware of the increase in domestic violence since the start of the pandemic, has taken it into her own hands to help out victims. She’s launched a resource for domestic assault victims disguised as a fake beauty site. The Facebook page called “Rumianki i Bratki” (Chamomiles and Pansies) allows victims to stuck in their homes to seek help.

“I heard about a French initiative, where people go to the pharmacy and ask for a special mask that lets the pharmacist know they are a victim of domestic violence,” Paszko said in an interview with the BBC. “I thought it was a brilliant idea, so I came up with the idea of selling cosmetics.”

Translated from Polish, the description of the Facebook page reads: “Chamomiles and Pansies is a store with natural cosmetics. We will help you with the purchase of the appropriate specifics, as well as with all other problems.” There are a total of nine products listed on the page, and each has a description detailing how the product can help.

The Facebook page offers a variety of services depending on what the victim is comfortable with.

When someone messages Chamomiles and Pansies inquiring about a face cream, they’re assisted by a psychologist posing as a salesperson. Using Facebook Chat, the psychologist is able to collect essential information. The psychologist can then send authorities to visit the home if the domestic abuse victim chooses to place an order and leave an address.

When Paszko first launched the site, she thought it would only reach her friends and extended family, but the BBC reported that more than 350 people have contacted the website. Since the initiative took off, Paszko has enlisted the help of the Center For Women’s Rights, a Polish nonprofit. It currently has over 22,000 likes.

Cases of domestic violence have been on the rise since the start of the pandemic.

More than 10 million women and men experience violence from an intimate partner  every year, according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence based in Colorado. The National Domestic Violence Hotline reported a 9%  increase in emergency calls from March through May last year when many states issued lockdown orders. Police departments have reported increases of domestic violence cases around the country including 18% in San Antonio, 22% in Portland and 10% in New York City, according to the American Journal of Emergency Medicine.

If you are experiencing domestic violence in the United States and need help you can go to TheHotline.org to chat with someone or call 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).

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