Back in the 80´s I wrote a letter to the editor of my local newspaper complaining that I was labeled Mexican American and people would not allow me to say “American” without asking, “Yes, but what are you?”
An African American gentleman replied to my letter and said, “Stop complaining about it. Rejoice in your ethnicity. There is something “cozy” about being part of a minority group.”
I took his comments to heart. From that point on, I did not bluster about the label. I knew I was American. In the nineties, I started writing down my family history. I completed the first draft of my book in 1998. I´ve added, edited, written and re-written my book several times. Now I am studying my Dad´s roots. I am connecting, relating and embracing my ancestors´history and our culture.
La Raza is our culture, our history, our blood, our sweat, our tears and every step we have taken to come to the point we have reached today. That is what Latin people mean when they say “Que Viva La Raza.” La Raza is all Latin people, not just Mexicans or Mexican Americans. I have heard these words spoken by George Lopez, Carlos Mencia, Jennifer Lopez, Jimmy Smits, Eva Longoria and more. They are of several Latin ethnicities, but all say the same words.
“¡que Viva La Raza!”
I understand this term and I agree with the true meaning.