Open Letter From The League Of Pochos, Gringazos, Y Niños Americanizados
Growing up Latino/a in the U.S. can be… complicated. Our collective identity tends to confuse a lot of people, both here in the U.S. and in our families’ many countries of origin. Because of that, it’s about time we offered a little insight into what it’s like being us:
We have some points that need to be addressed!
First, for our fellow U.S. Americans:
Hi. We’re here.
Some of us, the first- and second-generation kids, are a little newer. And some of us have been here, our great-great-great-great-great-great-great grandparents having lived on this very same little piece of the world we stand in now.
We can’t “go back to” anywhere. This is home. Forget keeping up with the Joneses. Now you better keep up with the Garcías.
We don’t exist on the margins of American culture, offering a few holidays here and there. We are America. We are mainstream. This culture is our culture. We made it, we built this. (You’re welcome.) And we share in it, participate in it, and consume it every day.
We’re not a category. We’re it.
And, for those across Latin America:
We’re proud of our roots. It connects us to the generations that came before us, the traditions and customs that help form our worldview today. We have the space and distance of fighting for our roots and questioning the values that no longer resonate.
So call us pochos. Tell us we’re “gringafied,” or too americanizados.
We’ll wear it with pride, because living in at least two worlds at any given moment is hard, but we manage it with grace and humor and dignity.
Between “English ONLY” and “ah, ah, en español,“ we continually find ways to express ourselves and speak our minds.
Sometimes, sure, it gets tough. Sometimes, true, we might fall into the trap of feeling like we don’t fully belong in either place. Sometimes it feels like a constant, unwinnable battle, trying to be everything to everyone.
And, finally, to one another:
We’ve got this. Keep going.
The League Of Pochos, Gringazos, Y Niños Americanizados
Have you ever gone through this? Let’s talk about it. How do you deal?
Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org