Multiculturalism is something that I have been very passionate about since I moved to the United States over twelve years ago. However, after having my children it became even more important as I understood this was the way to raise my kids for them to be able to interact and thrive in this diverse society. That’s the reason I’m raising cultural awareness and advocating for multicultural living to promote the changes needed in our society.
When I decided to focus on this, it quickly became obvious that I had to go beyond the sanctuary of my home to spread the word about what I know to be true about American Latinos and multicultural living. With that in mind I’ve decided to move forward driven by this motto: raising cultural awareness to promote social change. That’s what I’ve chosen to be my new tagline, not only because I deeply believe that understanding culture creates change, but also as a reminder of my mission.
We see it every day how polarized American society can be when instead of a multicultural perspective we choose to reject everything that is different from what we are and what we know, when we decide that we are ‘superior’ to another human being in any way, shape, or form; when we deny others respect simply because we feel we are the ‘right’ ones. We really need to question ourselves how can we unite instead of becoming more radical.
That’s why I’m raising cultural awareness
You might be thinking in all the issues American society faces today and feel that culture is not a priority within the grand scheme of things. However, I’m a firm believer that as we have a growing multicultural population, our society is not going to be able to move forward without the understanding and respect for all cultural backgrounds and ethnicities.
Without cultural awareness we are left with confusion, resentment, biases and prejudice, we are unable to connect to others due to judgment, and therefore we will increasingly be more divided, conflicted and unable to create, innovate, move forward and live peacefully.
As Americans we have the fortune of living on a melting pot, to have the cultures of the world within the reach of our borders and yet, historically we’ve continue to fear and reject different perspectives and define what’s American within a simplistic, unilateral view that is no longer sustainable.
Raising cultural awareness and shaping the next generation of Americans to be world citizens will create more conversations and less bullying and it will be the only way we can move past our differences and discuss issues that are equal to all of us as citizens in this country.
A good example of the failure to understand what’s culturally relevant and when culture plays a role in our decision-making process is the current electoral campaign in which we see candidates trying to appeal to Latinos with Latin music, food and the ability to mumble a few words in Spanish. Yet, as a Latina mom, like many other American moms, my main concerns are education and the economy to secure the future of my children.
Raising cultural awareness, although it is my choice and mission, it is my duty, as I see it as the peaceful and coherent way of understanding our difference and adding the value of different perspectives to face the challenges that we are all facing as Americans.