» EXCLUSIVE SNEAK PEEK: Toya Wright Learns MempHitz Sucked On Some Random Girl’s Fingers In The Club! » EXCLUSIVE SNEAK PEEK: MempHitz Took A Lie Detector Test To Prove He's Never Hit A Woman» EXCLUSIVE: Tim Norman Speaks On Ms. Robbie Suing Him -- "Outsiders Are Manipulating My Mother Into Selling Sweetie Pies!"
LaLa Vazquez: Puerto Rican Can Be "BLACK" Too!
Jan 21 | by Natasha
LaLa Vazquez wrote a personal note addressing all the drama that tends to ensue when people discuss her (and other Boricuas' for that matter) racial background. She says that while both of her parents are Puerto Rican, that makes her Puerto Rican. But she also says that doesn't mean she's not "black" as well. LaLa explains that black and Puerto Rican are not always mutually exclusive...and she schools people on her Latina heritage and what she teaches her son Kiyan. Her words when you read the rest...
A lot of people don't realize that I'm Latina, which is fine. One thing about being Latina is that there isn't one look that comes with the territory. I don't expect people to know my cultural background just by glancing at me. I do, however, expect that when I tell people my family is from Puerto Rico, that I will be believed and not accused of trying to be something that I'm not. It usually goes something like this: a person having a conversation with me discovers one way or another that I'm Puerto Rican and fluent in Spanish. That person then expresses their shock over these realizations for any number of reasons--common responses are, "You don't look Latina" and "I thought you were black!" I never said I wasn't black. And since when does being black and being Latina have to be mutually exclusive? In my experience, people tend to have an uninformed and rather narrow view of what it means to be Puerto Rican. For me, not looking like some people's idea of a typical Latina has been challenging and often painful. I constantly find myself trying to justify who I am, and why should I? I'm proud of my heritage and my family. Both of my parents are from Puerto Rico. They raised two kids in Brooklyn and later in New Jersey, where we ate arroz con gandules and pasteles and listened to salsa music. I feel just as at home in Puerto Rico, where I still have tons of family, including aunts, uncles and cousins. Puerto Rico is in my blood. And that has nothing to do with the color of my skin. I'm not angry with anyone who doesn't understand the complexities of race and culture. And I'm also not interested in having long, drawn out conversations about how it's possible for me to look like this and speak Spanish. In fact, sometimes I make it a point not to mention my parents' birthplace because I don't always feel like having the inevitable discussion that follows. Instead, I let people look at me and come to their own conclusions. As I start to get my feet wet in Hollywood, I already know that there are certain parts I won't even be considered for. The character can be Puerto Rican and speak Spanish just like me, but Hollywood defines Latina as Jennifer Lopez and Sofia Vergara. As beautiful as they are, we're not all one race in Latin America. But I don't go to auditions so that I can give history lessons to film executives. I'd rather skip the entire process. I'm raising my son to understand who he is, and it's my hope that he'll never let others define him. It reflects poorly on us when we don't educate ourselves about the rest of the world and what it looks like. I encourage people who are interested to learn more, do research and ask informed questions. If you're lucky enough to visit various countries in Latin America, you'll be baffled to see the blackest of the black and the lightest of the light living together. And I dare you to ask one of them to prove their latinidad.Very interesting. Your thoughts?
» REALLY BRUH?! Rich Homie Quan Forgot (Or Didn't Know) The Words To A Classic Biggie Verse...At HIP HOP HONORS!» Juvenile Just Cut Up At The Waffle House -- Punches Customer For Allegedly Calling Girlfriend A Ho» HARPO, Who 'Dis Woman?! Lil Kim Has Us Scratching Our Heads After Posting New Selfies That Look Nothing Like Her
» Bobby Brown Brings Baby Bodhi To Book Signing In L.A. + Katt Williams & Hazel-E Back Together Again» Tika Sumpter, John Legend & Parker Sawyers All Smiles At ‘Southside With You’ Chi-Town Premiere + ‘Girls Trip’ Stars Regina Hall & Tiffany Haddish Have Fun With Pokémon On Set» BABY BUMPS ON THE MOVE! Angela Simmons Runs Errands After Working Out + Tatyana Ali Attends Nickelodeon’s “Remember When” Event
» Chris Rock & Megalyn -- Boo'd Up At Big Dinner With Celebrity Friends After Chris Finalized Divorce» ATL LOVE! K. Michelle All Boo’d Up With Doctor Boyfriend + Newly Reunited Couple Waka Flocka & Tammy Rivera Host Parties Together» President Obama Tours Flooded Baton Rouge With Residents, Meets With Families Of Alton Sterling & Slain Policemen
» UNBOTHERED! NeNe Leakes Brushes Off $830K Lien On Georgia Home » Bill Cosby No Longer Has Monique Pressley On His Legal Team + Birdman & Cash Money Reportedly Sign Apple Music Deal For Upcoming Documentary» Nate Parker Pens Letter -- Expresses Sorrow & Devastation After Learning Rape Accuser Took Her Own Life
» The ESPYS Red Carpet Flooded With Couples Galore -- Teyana & Iman, Ciara & Russell, Ayesha & Steph, Gabby & Dwyane & More!» Slay Then, Leslie! "Ghostbusters" Star Looks FAB In Custom Christian Siriano Gown After Lack Of Support From Other Designers» BET AWARDS 2016 WHITE CARPET: More Fab Chicks – LisaRaye (With Purple Hair), Yara Shahidi, Alicia Keys & More
» PARTY PEOPLE: Young Thug Celebrates 25th Birthday & PUMA Campaign With T.I., Tiny, Future & More In ATL + Rihanna Goes OFF To Whitney Houston Track » BABY FEVER! DJ Envy & Gia’s Rooftop Baby Shower + Omarion & Apryl Celebrate Megaa’s 2nd Birthday With Backyard Bash» LET’S CELEBRATE! Grant & Tamia Hill, Magic & Cookie Johnson, Common, Chris Paul & More Have Fun At POTUS’ 55th Birthday Bash At The White House
» PAST MEETS PRESENT: Frank Ocean Drops New Album "Blonde" On iTunes AND "Boys Don't Cry" Art Magazine At Pop Up Shops» Nope, You're Not Trippin'. That Is One Long Track That Makes Up Frank Ocean's New Visual Album "Endless" » Bill Cosby No Longer Has Monique Pressley On His Legal Team + Birdman & Cash Money Reportedly Sign Apple Music Deal For Upcoming Documentary
» SPEAK ON IT: Why Olympic Swimmer Ryan Lochte Will Likely Get Away With LYING About Armed Robbery In Rio Because Of White Privilege » FLIPS, JUMPS & KICKS! The Most Slay-Worthy YBF Moments Of 2016 Rio Olympics!» LeBron James Surprises 5,000 Akron Kids With A FREE Trip To An Amusement Park + King James & Jesse Williams Join Forces On New Podcast
» Rihanna Praises Naomi Campbell For Rocking FENTYxPuma In VOGUE Italia + Karrueche POPS In KaePop Spread + Elaina Watley’s Mother-Daughter Shot» Gabourey Sidibe Starts Directing Short Film ‘A Tale of Four Women’ + Miss USA Deshauna Barber Works Her Magic For Nigel Barker’s Camera » Nas & Erykah Badu Join Forces On Powerful Duet “This Bitter Land” + Jennifer Hudson Serves Photoshoot Fab Before Hitting The Stage