African-American, Alabama, Black, Brown, Chicano, Edinburg, Eufaula, Filipino, half-breed, interracial, Latina, Mexican, Mexican-American, mixed race, race, racism, racist, relationships, RGV, Rio Grande Valley, stereotypes, Texas, White, Yellow
I read some Craigslist posts regarding others opinions of the Rio Grande Valley being racist. I figured I’d share what I posted here too. I’m part White and part Latina and moved here in 1992 from Alabama. In Alabama I felt like I never fully fit in because I didn’t look White enough. When I moved here I wasn’t Mexican enough. Finally, I’ve come to embrace myself for who I am.
I’m proud of myself since despite the fact I’m not as successful as I’d wish to be I have made some big accomplishments considering the circumstances life has thrown my way. One small accomplishment is my ability to converse in Spanish. Of course, I’m not fluent but I can communicate effectively. I’m not familiar with all the Spanish verb tenses and am often shy to speak it unless I need to since I have been teased by locals due to my accent. I think more people on both sides of the border should learn each other’s languages. In my opinion it’s laziness not to learn each other’s languages. Don’t you see that knowing each other’s languages not only equals better relations between both sides of the border but also equals more money to be made? In many countries in Europe people along the border of each other’s country seem to know each other’s languages. Actually, there are many countries all over the world in which people learn multiple languages throughout their school years.
Although I haven’t gone through some of the experiences other’s mentioned in their posts, I believe theses things they’ve experienced is real. For example, as long as I’ve lived here people seem to be much more open to interracial relationships than people were in the small Alabama town I came from. When I lived in Eufaula, Alabama I was called names by Whites and Blacks for having a Black boyfriend in the 6th grade. Whites would tell me it was against the Bible to date outside my race and would also call me a Nigger Lover. Some Black guys would tease me saying I had Jungle Fever. What I have noticed a lot growing up in the Valley is even educators often stereotype Whites, Blacks, and Asians. The stereotypes weren’t mean or hateful but were their opinions of other races that they probably based on watching television which, of course, stereotypes people heavily. When I was a teenager in Pharr many fellow female classmates seemed to be attracted to Black guys which is why I’m slightly surprised that so many posters here have negative experiences when it comes to interracial relationships. I do believe you though. I almost forgot to mention that I had White friends in Alabama that casually used the word Nigger and it seemed as if their entire family would speak that way. I remember hearing many Blacks use the word Honkey.
One of the most hateful claims I’ve heard down here by some locals is that Blacks are smelly or that Filipinos are dirty. Personally, I’ve never noticed any “strange smelly” scents from a Black person unless they happened to be dirty. My Dad’s ex-girlfriend was Filipino and she was a clean freak too. I used to have this “party buddy” that I thought was ignorant despite the fact I kept hanging out with her for awhile. She was mixed with Mexican and White like me but I thought she was ignorant because she didn’t like Black people and even though she was darker skinned than me she said she thought their skin made them look dirty.
The purpose of this post isn’t just to share my thoughts but also to get you talking about your opinions too. Please check out my vlog by searching for Ginger Castro on YouTube.