Latinx Club Celebrates Latino/Hispanic Heritage Month

Latinx club members celebrate Latino/Hispanic Heritage Month.

The first day of Latino/Hispanic Heritage Month – Sept. 15 – provided a chance to acknowledge, recognize, and enjoy the accomplishments that Latinos have made in the community, state, and nation. This specific day also is the anniversary of independence for many Latin American countries like Costa Rica, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Nicaragua.

The Latinx Student Union at Cleveland is a place where students meet up every Wednesday at lunch to celebrate their culture, plan events, and much more. Two students who are part of the club, Jorge Prieto-Mendez, and Giovanni Mederos, and attendance coach Isaac Camach

o, took the time to answer some questions about the significance of Hispanic Heritage Month.

Q: What are some of the most significant parts of Hispanic H

eritage Month to you?
A: Prieto-Mendez- Mostly that people value our heritage, our cultures, and everything we do…stuff like that.
A: Mederos- I feel like Hispanic Heritage Month represents Hispan

ic culture from around the world and acknowledges efforts mad

e from the Latinx community as a whole. It is also a time to represent those who are underrepresented, and highlights those who are excluded from our mainstream society. It is also a time where you can truly express and embrace the Hispanic culture, as you are able to learn more a

bout the Hispanic culture as a whole, while also learning some interesting facts from Spanish-speaking countries around the world.
A: Camacho – As a community that is underrepresented it is empowering to see cultural events around the world. For me, it is a time to remember my roots and strengthen them for the journey ahead. The times I have been the most lost are when I am furthest away from my culture.

Q: Are there any aspects of your culture that you wish people knew more about, or were more educated on?
A: Prieto-Mendez- I think everyone’s got like, basic details of what our cultures mean, but you know, sometimes you have to dig deeper.
A: Mederos- I feel like people should know that Hispanics usually get labeled a lot in a way, and that can be very harmful towards our community. People should know that Hispanic culture is about representation of our culture, and not necessarily labeling others. It is about who we are as a person, and how we represent our ancestors, along with being part of our Hispanic culture. I feel like more people should try to engage with the culture… and to celebrate everyone’s experiences throughout the world. Everybody should at least try to celebrate in some way, even if they are not part of the culture. If Hispanic culture was represented to other people in the world, I feel like that could make a change in our socie

ty, and our cultural beliefs as well.

A: Camacho – Hispanic culture is not Mexican culture and May 5 is not Mexican Independence Day, September 16 is.

Q: How can non-Hispanic/Latino people in the community

help to amplify your voices and recognize the accomplishm

ents that Latinos have been making?

A: Mederos- Non-Hispanic/Latino people can help amplify the voices of Hispanics who are underrepresented, while also empowering their message to the world. I do feel like some Hispanic people are overstepped on by non-Hispanic people at times… however they should be heard out as well, along with having a sense of understanding of the culture. Hispanic culture should be integrated in a section in the American education system, as the current American education system doesn’t really underline or mention that at all. I feel like it’s kind of overlooked, but not necessarily like, ‘Oh, is this what Hispanic Heritage Month is all about?’ which I feel like that should be included in every educational system.
A: Camacho- Spend your money at Hispanic-owned businesses and donate towards lifting up young Hispanic voices.

Q: Are there any events coming up to commemorate the heritage month?

A: Mederos- El Grito Portland
A: Camacho- Portland Latin American Film Festival

Q: What ways are Latinx Student Union planning to celebrate?
A: Prieto-Mendez- I’ve only heard a bit of it. So next week during Flex it’s like, each room is going to be decorated with each one like a Hispanic country, like with music and stuff like that. So each room is going to be decorated like that, you know with candies from each culture… A: Mederos – The Latinx Student Union is planning on creating rooms designated to Spanish-speaking countries on enriching their culture and educating others about different cultures within each room. There will be food and music, along with information about getting involved with the Hispanic culture. I know that LSU will continue to produce events that will enrich our community and to represent the underrepresented in our world.
A: Camacho- This Thursday (Sept. 29) during Flex, Latinx Student Union will be having a cultural fair representing countries of our club members. Come find each room where there will be food, music, and information to empower the communities. LSU will be putting on frequent events to empower our communities.

Q: What are some parts of your heritage that you feel the most proud of?
A: Prieto-Mendez- Just in general, probably our beliefs, and the way w

e do things.
A: Mederos- I am proud of being a Hispanic, as it has enriched my life with cultural experiences that I have learned in class, while also experiencing events and a variety of foods from Latin America as well. I enjoy how there is a lot of creativity from our culture, especially with the variety of dishes from different cultures.
A: Camacho- I am most proud of our ability to build community while dancing the night away.

Q: Who are some of the people you think we should learn more about during this heritage month, or in general?
A: Prieto-Mendez- I really don’t know, but anyone from our heritage, so people like that are important and that matters. A: Mederos – Our ancestry is definitely underrepresented, as we don’t really talk about the sacrifices that they made for us to be here. There is not a lot of credit given to our ancestors, but they faced many hardships and challenges, which I feel like it should be talked about in all cultures and future generations as well.
A: Camacho- I think the parents go unnoticed. The ones that got us to this point, and sacrificed a lot for us to have this opportunity. They are not given enough credit because they are not wearing capes, but they are superheroes.