things that matter

In Los Angeles, Latinos Are Taking Over One Unfortunate Statistic

MALINGERING / FLICKR

It’s no secret that the Latino population in the United States is steadily rising.


As the population increases, however, there’s one statistic where Latinos are unfortunately also being represented in greater numbers. The Los Angeles Times reports that in 2016, Los Angeles’ homeless Latino population increased from 27 percent (around 12,500 people) to an even more alarming 35 percent (around 20,200). According to U.S. News & World Report, Los Angeles’ current total homeless population is nearly 58,000 people. Los Angeles consistently has one of the highest homeless populations in the U.S.

In Los Angeles, the city’s population is nearly 48 percent Latino.


County Supervisor Hilda Solis described the explosion of Latino homeless in Los Angeles as a “new phenomenon” even though the reasons for the spike are not entirely new. An estimated 20 percent of L.A. County’s Latinos live below the poverty level, making below $47,000 annually. As the Los Angeles Times reported, Latino homelessness is influenced by factors such as increases in rent (a result of gentrification), low paying jobs and a lack of public housing for those who need it.

Undocumented Latinos are especially at risk, the article states, as many have to work several jobs to break even and they are often afraid to reach out to public assistance programs. As Rose Rios of Cover the Homeless Ministry told the Los Angeles Times, “It’s like they live with one foot on a banana peel and the other one step from homelessness.” If conditions do not change, the surge in Los Angeles’ Latino homeless population can be expected to increase.

(MORE: Los Angeles Times)

READ: This Harvard-Bound South L.A. Teen Was Able To Pull His Family Out Of Homelessness

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LA Is No Stranger To Earthquakes But Many On Twitter Forgot How To React, Here’s How To Stay Safe During The Next Earthquake

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LA Is No Stranger To Earthquakes But Many On Twitter Forgot How To React, Here’s How To Stay Safe During The Next Earthquake

KCAL9 / Twitter

So let’s be real – California is no stranger to earthquakes. It’s a well-known active fault zone. But that doesn’t mean when one hits we still don’t freak out!

So when last week’s earthquakes struck Southern California, all of social media was freaking out, particularly because they were the biggest earthquakes the region had felt in 20 years.

First came a 6.6 temblor that rattled everyone from Las Vegas to Los Angeles.

Credit: @LatinoKidProbs / Twitter

The first quake struck near the town of Ridgecrest and was felt as far away as Las Vegas, LA, and even in Mexico. Needless to say people were pretty freaked out. But this wasn’t the end of it.

The very next morning, a 7.1 earthquake struck the same area, sending shockwaves across Los Angeles – where the shaking was pretty intense.

Credit: @THR / Twitter

Thankfully, none of the quakes caused any major injuries or deaths and damage was minimal – especially in the Los Angeles area.

Of course, Twitter was lit up with all sorts of reactions.

Like this was defintiely how some of my tios and primos reacted to the quake. Though I think some also tried to play it off totally cool.

Some pointed out the all to real scenario of some of our papis running to safety at all costs.

I mean my papi would never do this but I can see their point…

While others pointed out the potential nightmare of having to lead all of your familia to safety after a major quake.

Credit: @M4NI4C_

I mean especially if you’re all together with your tías, primos, and hermanos – like imagine!

Some Latinos questioned the dramatic reactions of others, since Latin America knows earthquakes all too well.

Credit: @<higulzDaPro / Twitter

I mean just two years ago Mexico City was rattled by a violent earthquake that leveled parts of the city and killed hundreds of people. While Guatemala and El Salvador have all been hit by major earthquakes larger than those that hit Southern California.

Some pointed out the great examples made by the local news anchors who experienced the earthquake live on the air.

Bravo KCAL9 for setting such a good example for those of us who weren’t totally sure what to do.

While other’s pointed out the real lack of resources available in Spanish.

Credit: @patsulbaran / Twitter

This is a real liability for the Latino community but also other minority communities that don’t speak English. Without access to proper resources and information, many face greater risks of injury among other risks.

For information on earthquake safety en Español, haz clic aqui.

Although the quakes didn’t cause any severe injuries or deaths, they’re a wake up call to Californians to get prepared for the “Big One.”

Every Californian should have an emergency kit. And every kit should have plenty of water – enough to last you at least three days. You should also stock up on non-perishable foods (think canned tuna, beans, vegetables, snacks), you’ll also need a three day supply of these items. A flash light, batteries, first aid kit, medications, copies of important documents – all of these items are essential to keep in an earthquake emergency kit.

And as a reminder, here are some basic tips on how to stay safe during the next earthquake.

Remember in school when they told us to run for a closet or door frame for safety? While those areas are still considered safe to hide in during a quake, the new recommendations tell people to seek shelter under a desk, table, or other sturdy piece of furniture.

Memorize this list so that the next time a quake strikes, you’ll be better prepared to help yourself, your amigos, and your famlia.

READ: She Saved Lives During the 2017 Mexico Earthquake And Now After 10 Years Of Bravery She’s Getting Her Retirement Party

This YouTuber Thought It Would Be Funny To Dress As A Mexican In Boyle Heights But Didn’t Get The Response He Wanted

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This YouTuber Thought It Would Be Funny To Dress As A Mexican In Boyle Heights But Didn’t Get The Response He Wanted

Two YouTubers, “Kimo & Dani World” decided to use Boyle Heights as a backdrop to whatever YouTube project requires the use of cultural appropriation. Boyle Heights is a culturally rich Mexican community in Los Angeles that has long been a haven for immigrants and the Mexican-American community.

Kimo painted on a mustache, used white face paint, and threw on a sombrero and a cheap knock-off serape. Dani was carrying a camera, filming Kimo in a Mexican costume in Boyle Heights. But the community ejected him real quick.

Apparently, the guy thought it was okay to wear a culture as a costume because he’s Egyptian.

@nico_avina / Instagram

Nico Aviña, the Instagram user who confronted the YouTubers in Boyle Heights on camera, captioned the video, “This foo thought he was gonna stroll and be racist and not be called out. Nah! What was worse is he said he ain’t racist cause he is Egyptian. White girl was recording thinking all of this was funny. #boyleheights”

“I do think it’s funny.”

@nico_avina / Instagram

Though posted on Aviña’s account, a woman, named Myra, is recording the video of Aviña confronting Kimo. You can hear Aviña asking the man, “You think this is funny?” He responds “I do.” The man’s accomplice responds, smiling, “I do, yeah.”

This is the moment before the guy tells Aviña, “F*** you.”

@nico_avina / Instagram

Both Aviña and Myra are telling the disrespectful visitors to “get the f*** out” of their neighborhood. That’s the message they’re delivering these guys. Aviña asks him again, “You want to dress like that? You think this is funny?”

In one breath, Kimo responds, “I do think it’s funny. F***k you. I’m not here to disrespect you, dude.” 🤔

As store owners come out to stand their ground, Kimo says, “I’m spreading a f***ing good message.”

@nico_avina / Instagram

Aviña responds by saying, “Spread the good message, motherf***er.” Kimo keeps saying that he’s not trying to disrespect him, but also “it is funny” to wear traditional Mexican clothing. That’s not respect.

Their last project was a mockery of being “Homeless in Dubai.”

In a tone-deaf endeavor, Kimo dresses up like a homeless person, draws white paint on his face, like his Mexican costume, and goes around Dubai harassing locals for money and jobs. It’s not at all a social experiment nor an attempt to understand homelessness. It’s for entertainment.

This is a shot of Kimo acting like a hungry homeless person looking at pastries. 😡

The video on Instagram has left many stunned that this kind of tone deaf “comedy” still happens in 2019.

@its_me_bina13 / Instagram

It wouldn’t matter if the guy was trying to raise money for Boyle Heights or raise awareness on gentrification. It doesn’t matter what the message is when the means involve wearing a culture’s traditional clothing as a costume.

Most folks commenting thank Aviña for disrupting whatever “message” they were sending.

@WUIXICAN / Instagram

“Bro, thank you,” writes @wordtrav. “damn…que pendejos but you handled it!!! I am glad you and Myra are ok,” comments @polalopez1. “I hope they never come back

Other folks are concerned about the income for serape vendors.

@SKELETO62 / Instagram

The incident took place near Mariachi Plaza in Boyle Heights, where vendors are sometimes seen selling serapes and sombreros. In a barrio where that vendor may exist and other people won’t tolerate the costume, this does spark an internal dialogue.

One person struggles to grasp how stereotypes are a manifestation of racism.

@JACK__RIPLEY / Instagram

There is no footage of Aviña touching Kimo, but at the start of the video, Kimo says, “Don’t f***ing touch me.” The majority of comments are positive, some offer a jumping off point for a dialogue, and, now, the trolls are coming in.

See for yourself. What would you do?

The real message here is that you can’t go up into Boyle Heights mocking Mexican culture. Latinos are allergic to racists and will not tolerate this en el barrio.

READ: Harvard Took A Stand Against Racism By Revoking Admission To 10 Incoming Freshmen Who Posted Obscene Memes

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