Seriously, It Is Time To Stop That Whole “Latinas Need To Be ‘Handled'” Narrative
Cristina Martinez is a Chicana poet from Houston, Texas and she is sick and tired of the stereotypes she hears about Chicanas. She gathered these frustrations and wrote a poem that totally slams the haters who fetishize Latinas and think they are creatures who need to be “handled.” On top of that, she’s also tired of people who say Latinos are “tainting” the otherwise white America that so many idolize.
Martinez starts by describing how people speak to her.
“My Chicana sounds like ‘mami,’ sounds like ‘girl, you talk too fast, you must be running from something. Is it… is it la migra?’ Sounds like, ‘Say lil’ mama, could you call me papi tonight?'”
And pushes back against those who think Chicano culture is just a fashion trend.
“Am I Selena Quintanilla enough for you? Am I Kim Kardashian enough for you because they’re the same, right?” Spoiler: They are not the same because La Reina was around long before Kim K paid for her body shape.
Martinez also recalls two men discussing what you call someone who can’t “handle” a Latina.
“As if I’m something that needs to be dealt with,” she says. “As if all I have been bred to embody is disaster. As if all my culture can offer you, can offer you, is a frozen buzz with salt and sometimes sugar around the rim and a headache thereafter. Brain freeze.”
In the end, she has one message for these stereotyping fools that try to get her attention.
Listen to the full poem below and get ready to cheer!
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