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‘Love & Hip Hop Miami’s Reunion combat About Afro-Latino identity suggests Some individuals simply Don’t Get It

reality tv reunion showdowns are getting the norm — they're juicy, petty and first rate for rankings, however from time to time they're no longer a pretty good seek the subculture.

but Love & Hip Hop Miami's on-air clash between Dominican goddess Amara La Negra, Afro-Cuban queen Juju, and younger Hollywood really was a conversation about Afro-LatinX identity the way of life necessary to have.  

For folks new to the whole Afro-LatinX flow, the cliff notes edition is —Afro-Latinos (men), Afro-Latinas (women), and/or Afro-LatinX (umbrella term) individuals are Latinos with African ancestry.  counting on where you are living on the earth, the term has distinct and evolving meanings (one of the most gold standard no-nonsense breakdowns of Afro-Latinx identity is on this Instagram thread.)

examine greater: Amara La Negra talks about Black american citizens embracing her: "They keep in mind the struggles"

There are also Afro-Latinos who're multi-ethnic or have combined heritage.  This comprises Afro-Latinas like Tatyana Ali (Panamanian and Trinidadian), Sunny Hostin (African-American and Puerto Rican), Miguel (Mexican and African-American) and Soledad O'Brien (Afro-Cuban, Irish and Scottish).  and i'm one too (my dad is African-American and my mother is Puerto Rican).

however you don't should be "combined" to be Afro-Latino.  at the end of the day, Afro-Latinos are black. length.

The difficulty is, we're infrequently offered an image of Latinos that comprises the blackest among us.  "Latina" all the time looks to equal easy-skinned and Eurocentric.  Many industrial and cultural messages toughen that blackness is a problem.

It's a struggle Amara La Negra has been talking about on the grounds that earlier than her days on Love and Hip Hop Miami and all through the season— whatever she acquired criticized for when younger Hollywood asked her to believe being "a little less Macy gray" and "more Beyonce" to make it within the music biz.

study more: Black and Proud: Why Amara La Negra doesn't must prove herself to any individual

Amara La Negra and younger Hollywood's unhealthy blood at last spilled onstage this week when he sorta (kinda?) tried to make an apology (but also insulted) Amara La Negra about her oversized Afro.

Amara: …The hair that grows out of my head is an Afro!

young Hollywood: That's no longer an Afro- it grows curly. [Afro?] is that the name of that? 

(sure sir, thick curls grow into Afros. From wavy to 4c texture.  however I digress…)

young Hollywood: I talked about it the inaccurate approach and i ask for forgiveness for that…I ain't by no means heard of Afro-Latinos.  and that i'm no longer the only 1 who hasn't.

here is where the conversation gets true.  younger Hollywood — a Puerto Rican who says he has a black father and white mother— indicates his lack of awareness that Afro-Latinos exist— a community he could very neatly be part of.  He's not alone.  

Which is why this conversation on a countrywide platform like Vh1's Love & Hip Hop concerns for altering the narrative about Latinx and Black id.

younger Hollywood: You're tremendous Spanish [Amara La Negra]. You communicate Spanish, you don't hand around in the black group like that!

Juju: You can be each!  I'm the same manner. My fogeys are each black however they're born in Cuba. They're of African descent. 

'Afro-Latino' potential we're of African descent!

African individuals weren't just dropped off in the usa!

right here Juju exams the producer for setting apart the "black group" from Latinos— something that lots of people do. He naturally thinks "black" solely means African-americans— however it doesn't. 

no longer most effective does "black" embody people from the Caribbean and African nations, nonetheless it additionally contains Afro-Latinos— who experience life fully as black people.  From discrimination to health disparities, Afro-Latinos recognize what it potential to be handled in another way too.

It's what activists like Afro-Brazilian councilwoman Marielle Franco died combating against. She was assassinated this month after speakme up for black Brazilians who confronted police brutality.

examine extra: murder of Brazilian baby-kisser who fought for ladies and the terrible sparks protests

The damaging effects of the trans-Atlantic slave exchange nonetheless exist today, leaving black folks combating racism no depend what language they talk.

young Hollywood ultimately means that Amara "speakme Spanish" in some way makes her more "Latina" than black.  however there are Latinos, together with Afro-Latinos— who don't communicate Spanish.  That doesn't make them any much less Latino.

And there are black people everywhere the world who communicate Spanish (gasp!). just see this video of Lupita Nyong'o to blow your mind.

The entire Love & Hip Hop Miami reunion argument shows there continues to be a whole lot to be realized when it comes Afro-Latinidad.

besides the fact that young Hollywood stormed off stage, irritated and pissed off (the Latino version of white tears), the training he changed into taught can optimistically open up minds about what Afro-Latinx americans face on the daily.

Juju summed the frustration up perfectly:

"growing to be up I had the identical situation. You're too Hispanic to be black. You're too black to be Hispanic."

possibly after Love & Hip Hop Miami, people will ultimately get it— Afro-Latinos don't need to select.

Natasha S. Alford is a digital host and Deputy Editor of theGrio.  comply with her latest news updates on Twitter and Instagram at @natashasalford.

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