Entertainment

Walter Mercado Got Real About His Flamboyant Style And Why He’s Long Said ‘No’ To Extreme Gender Conformity And Machismo

Puerto Rican astrologist Walter Mercado and his astrology predictions have been an institution in Latino households for nearly 50 years. Growing up, we would wait to hear his predictions for our upcoming day. Basically, Mercado and his readings prepared us for our challenges and celebrated our victories.

His flamboyant style has made him one of the most recognizable figures in our culture. What’s more, he is one of the first gender non-conforming individuals that many in the Latino community encountered. That’s something we have long been fascinated by and admired about the astrologist. Despite the stigma that is attached to people who live outside of gender norms, Mercado has always been able to claim a space for his message and has gained fans around the world during a five-decade career. 

Recently, Mercado spoke about his legendary career, his gender identification and the new exhibit in honor of his work. 

When talking about personal style and gender identification, Mercado was extremely open about remaining authentic and embracing dual energies.

CREDIT: @waltermercadotv / Instagram

According to Mercado, we all have the same feminine and masculine energies and can call upon them when needed. 

“I’m so into who I am, and I do [what] feels right for me,” Mercado explained to Remezcla. “I’m so connected to people and to the divine for that. That I look feminine with a cape? Everyone knows we have two energies – yin and yang – and I know how to balance them. If I have to be a warrior, then I’ll be that. If I have to be soft and subtle, I can be that, too.”

In the interview, Mercado also acknowledged the barriers he has broken through his presences in the Latinidad.

“I broke the barriers. Boys wear blue and girls wear pink…Why? No, that’s in the past. Extreme gender conformity, machismo, and weak, submissive women, no, no, no, no. We are humans; people have the right to think whatever they want. I follow my own path, and I am who I am.”

The astrologist’s groundbreaking work is also being celebrated with a dedicated exhibit that explores the more intimate parts of his life.

@HistoryMiami / Twitter

Called Mucho, Mucho Amor: 50 Years of Walter Mercado, the exhibit is being hosted by the History Miami Museum in Florida. The limited-run exhibit is open from August 2nd-25th. At the grand opening, Mercado entered the event in true fabulos style — carried in on a golden throne-like the true celestial king he is while triumphant music played and fans cheered. 

For public viewing, the exhibit features 12 of Mercado’s most iconic capes — one decorated and bedazzled for each Astrological sign. It will also showcase jewels, tarot cards and ephemera used during Mercado’s readings. These items will be on display for the first time ever. 

In the interview, Mercado credits his success to his realness to his longterm.

CREDIT: @waltermercadotv / Instagram

For many of us, the comfort Mercado has in his own skin is something we aspire to have. It’s this comfort that led to the familiarity and trust that we developed in the astrologist. His spot-on astrology predictions didn’t hurt either, but it’s definitely the certainty that comes from Mercado’s self-assurance that makes him such a trusted figure. 

“The stars will give an inclination, but they don’t force anything on anyone,” Walter said in his interview. “I would tell people the tendencies I would see show up for them, but I was always very clear with my messages. I let people know they shouldn’t have expectations from me or expect me to tell them the exact location where they’ll run into the love of their life. I would formulate it by saying, ‘I see a tendency that love is around you and following you.’”

Mercado also shared that he believes that his gift for astrology comes from a “divine source” and credits it for the love he has received from his numerous fans. 

Twitter / @HistoryMiami

Whether Mercado’s readings are authentic or just vague prophecies, one thing is certain: the astrologist loves his fans as much as they love him. With this in mind, Mercado tries to share his love and positivity with his public.

“People were saying I was the new prophet for a new era and that God and Christ manifested in my heart,” Mercado explained. “I was taken aback by all the love people were showing me, and I’ve always improvised my readings. I don’t like to use a teleprompter. When I was finishing the segment I was inspired, and I uttered the words, ‘Que Dios me los bendiga a todos, y que reciban de mi mucha paz y mucho mucho (blows kiss) amor,’ and it stuck. People were thanking me for the prayer, and at that moment, I made the choice – since the prayer was so pure and beautiful – I would keep using it. I still use it so the public could continue to receive these blessings.”

H/T: Remezcla “I Am Who I Am” Walter Mercado On Gender Non-Conformity & His Long Career

 

T.I.’s Daughter Unfollows Him On Instagram And ‘Likes’ Comments That Call Him Out For Being Controlling

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T.I.’s Daughter Unfollows Him On Instagram And ‘Likes’ Comments That Call Him Out For Being Controlling

princess_of_da_south / Instagram

Rapper T.I. lost the respect of quite a few fans last week when he joked about conducting a hymen check on his daughter. This week he’s lost at least one Instagram follower: his daughter, Deyjah Harris. 

During an incredibly cringe-worthy interview last week, T.I. bragged about knowing the status of his daughter’s virginity.

princess_of_da_south / Instagram

In a recent interview, the rapper boasted about his desire to keep his 18-year-old daughter “pure” and said that he does so by accompanying her to her yearly gynecologist appoints. As if the whole interview couldn’t have gotten worse, T.I. proved his ignorance by saying that, despite all of the doctors in the world that says that the absence of a hymen does not provide viable of proof a woman’s sexual activity, he makes the doctor report on its status.

In an interview with Nazanin Mandi and Nadia Moham for their podcast Ladies Like Us, TI gave the most bizarre and nasty response to a question about whether or not he had the “sex talk” with his daughter yet.

“Have I? This is the thing: Deyjah’s 18, just graduated high school now and she’s attending her first year of college, figuring it out for herself,” he replied. “And yes, not only have we had the conversation, we have yearly trips to the gynecologist to check her hymen.”

His response promoted laughter from the two hosts of the podcast, but T.I. made it clear that he was as serious as the heart attack that I had when I heard this.

“This is what we do. Right after the birthday, we celebrate,” T.I. continued “Usually like the day after the party she’s enjoying her gifts. I put a sticky note on the door: ‘Gyno. Tomorrow. 9:30.’”

Following her father’s comments, Deyjah Harris has unfollowed her dad on Instagram.

 According to E! News, Harris, 18, unfollowed her father after telling the world that he check the status of her hymen. While she has yet to comment about her father’s gross interview she has reportedly liked several tweets that have lambasted T.I. after the “Ladies Like Us” podcast aired.

We’re not sure when Harris made the decision to unfollow her father.

But fans have pointed out that she hasn’t just stuck to clicking the “unfollow” button on her father. Harris no longer follow’s  T.I.’s wife, Tameka “Tiny” Cottle, or her stepsister Zonnique Pullins.

There’s no easy way to prepare you for what disgusting thing rapper T.I. just said about his daughter, her hymen, and her virginity, so just get ready for what you’re about to read. According to the rapper, he accompanies her to every appointment with her so that he can hear the doctor’s prognosis on her hymen himself. He even pressures his daughter into signing a released statement that will allow him to obtain this information. 

“We’ll go and sit down and the doctor will come and talk, and the doctor is maintaining a high level of professionalism,” he explained. “He’s like, ‘You know sir, I have to… in order for me to share information…’”

“I’m like, ‘Deyjah they want you to sign this. They want you to sign this so we can share information. Is there anything you wouldn’t want me to know? Okay. See doc? No problem.’”

As most of us know, there are many ways for a hymen to be broken that don’t include sex. 

princess_of_da_south / Instagram

According to one Psychology Today article most young girls experience a wearing away of the hymenal tissue that surrounds their vaginal openings. “Most hymenal tissue wears away as a result of washing, walking, athletics, self-exploration, and masturbation, though little bits may remain around the vaginal opening, particularly in the area closest to the anus (hymenal tags).” But these facts aren’t enough to keep T.I. from thinking about his daughter’s private parts.

“I say, ‘Look doc, she don’t ride no horses, she don’t ride no bike, she don’t play no sports, man. Just check the hymen please and give me back my results, expeditiously.’”

As if all of this information about his prying interest in his daughter’s private life isn’t humiliating, T.I. claimed in his interview that he knows 100% his daughter’s hymen is still intact. 

“I will say as of her 18th birthday, her hymen is still intact,” T.I. declared on the podcast.

And just when we thought the conversation couldn’t have gotten worse, T.I. went onto shame his daughter and virgins further when the hosts replied suggested that his decision to “keep her a virgin” would put his teenager at risk for “vultures.”

Not so, claimed T.I. “They’re no fun. Who wants a virgin?” he insisted. “Like really? All that work.”

The rapper is the father of six children with three different women.

Of course, it didn’t take long for T.I.’s bizarre interview to go viral.

Women and men were quick to slam the rapper for his behavior and violation of his daughter’s privacy. 

“This is disgusting and horrible. Rapper T.I. says that he takes his daughter to the gynecologist to make sure her hymen is still intact!” New York Magazine writer Yashar Ali wrote. “Even after her 18th birthday (not that it makes it ok before her 18th birthday).  Twitter user and essayist Candice Marie Benbow wrote: “This is absolutely disgusting and perverted and vile and ignorant and just plain wrong. TI is a sick, controlling narcissist and there is absolutely NO way Deyjah, her mother or any woman in TI’s life should be okay with this.”

Latinos Mourn The Death Of Astrological Legend Walter Mercado Who Died During Día De Los Muertos

Entertainment

Latinos Mourn The Death Of Astrological Legend Walter Mercado Who Died During Día De Los Muertos

@OfficialJoelF / Twitter

Latinos are in disbelief to learn that the infamous Puerto Rican astrologer, Walter Mercado, died, at age 87, on Saturday. For more than 50 years, Mercado’s televised passion for astrological predictions, refusal to conform to gender roles, and mucho, mucho amor for his fans has secured a beloved space in the Latino zeitgeist. Whether your memory of Mercado was hearing your mom yell, “Callaté!” when his segment aired or memorizing your horoscope for the following day, every day, Mercado’s daily presence on your living room TV made him part of the family.

The public expects his immediate family to announce the cause of his passing, though San Juan’s Auxilio Mutuo Hospital spokeswoman, Sofia Luquis, did confirm his death on November 2, 2019.

Walter Mercado, a Pisces, was born at sea but lived and died in Puerto Rico.

Credit: @JuhemNR / Twitter

According to a biography published by Puerto Rico’s Foundation for Popular Culture, Mercado was born on March 9, 1932, on a ship traveling from Spain to Puerto Rico. He grew up in Ponce, Puerto Rico, where he later began his career in Puerto Rican telenovelas. Though his fame grew to all of Latin America, Mercado largely remained in Puerto Rico throughout his life.

The astrological legend Walter Mercado gifted us decades of accurate and life-changing predictions.

Credit: @BubbleTEar1 / Twitter

Mercaado happened to be at a studio when the star of a guest segment didn’t show up. Producer Elín Ortíz asked him to use a 15-minute segment to offer astrological divinations. Boricuas loved him, and he was soon made a regular.

Recently, Mercado opened up about his gender-nonconformity.

Credit: @Carrasquillo / Twitter

“I’m so into who I am, and I do [what] feels right for me,” Mercado explained to Remezcla. “I’m so connected to people and to the divine for that. That I look feminine with a cape? Everyone knows we have two energies – yin and yang – and I know how to balance them. If I have to be a warrior, then I’ll be that. If I have to be soft and subtle, I can be that, too.”

“He never identified as queer,” one mourner tweeted, “But it felt like he refused to be constrained by gender norms and antiquated ideas of masculinity. He even rejected our understanding of time. When an interviewer once asked his age, Walter Mercado responded “Soy ageless.” AGELESS NEVER DIES, BEBÉ.”

Mercado was a pioneer and icon in the LGBTQ+ Latino community.

Credit: @SheisDash / Twitter

Mercado never discussed his sexuality but courageously expressed his gender to millions of viewers decades before rampant machísmo and homophobia were regularly challenged. Like an actual LGBT superhero, Mercado was known for wearing bejeweled and sequined capes.

At one point, Mercado owned more than 2,000 capes, twelve of which were put on display in Miami in August.

Credit: HistorryMiami Museum

The HistoryMiami Museum put on a popular exhibit of his “costumes, mementos, and ephemera, on display for the first time ever” in its exhibit, Mucho, Mucho Amor: 50 Years of Walter Mercado, according to the museum website.

Mercado made a dazzling grand entrance, on a gold plated throne that was wheeled through the crowd.

Credit: @OfficialJoelF / Twitter

Wearing a gold sequined three-piece suit, 88-year-old Mercado blew kisses to his fans and posed for photographs as he met the cheering crowd one by one. Some received a coveted reading from the internationally acclaimed astrologer, which were likely some of the last divinations in his 50-year long career.

Mercado garnered 120 million Latino viewers every day for more than 30 years.

Credit: @hagtastic / Twitter

Basically, you, your abuela, and your mamá would gather in the living room every day to watch the icon deliver the wisdom we all needed. Today, Latinos are trying to tap into what made him so special to us all. “Our mothers, tias and tios relied on his advice,” one Twitter user shared, “but I think what captivated his 120 million daily viewers was his positivity and how he radiated mucho, mucho, mucho, amorrrrrr.”

Latinos are lamenting the loss of a decades-long tried and true New Year’s Eve tradition with Mercado.

Credit: THE NEW HERALD / YouTube

At the end of every year, Mercado gives a special segment on what each sign can expect from the new year. The mourning process for Mercado will extend at least until the New Year, as Latinos celebrate NYE without him. “I’m not an astrology buff but Walter was an icon and part of the family,” a mourner tweets, “New years will be so different without his segment his messages/horoscopes promoted optimism, love, and perseverance. Every evening he gave us hope, despite struggles, the stars showed a great future.”

Last year, Mercado predicted that Trump may be impeached in 2019.

Credit: @no_mamex / Instagram

Ok, so his exact Miami Herald-translated words were, “Donald Trump, the controversial president, will face his worst year and perhaps even impeachment.” This headline was published in The LA Times on January 2. Trump is currently undergoing an impeachment inquiry.

Beyond the loss of Mercado, it feels like a piece of our childhood died this weekend.

Credit: @lizzhuerta / Twitter

Ms. Lizz Huerta isn’t the first Latino to tweet about how Mercado’s death feels like the loss of something so innocent and pure from our childhoods. We all have such rich memories of how he was able to unite generations, though in varying ways. “My Tía would sit there and watch him weekly,” one dubious Latino tweeted. “I loved her dearly and while I would shake my head at her, if it made her happy to watch him, it was fine with me. She never sent money either which is why I was ok with it.”

We hope Mercado’s feeling mucho, mucho amor from wherever he is now.

Credit: @mijadoris / @cyberguurl / Twitter

Mercado passed on the final day of Día de Los Muertos, prompting Latinos to reaffirm Mercado’s destiny to transition to the stars themselves. Que descanse en Paz, Walter Mercado. You truly were a celestial being on this earth.

READ: Walter Mercado Got Real About His Flamboyant Style And Why He’s Long Said ‘No’ To Extreme Gender Conformity And Machismo