Search the hashtag #Latina on Twitter, Instagram or other social media platforms, and what do you find?
In my recent search on Twitter, I was dismayed to find that pornographic images are the top live tweets. While there are members of the #Latinx and #Latina community proudly engaging in sex work, our agency is taken away when only pornographic depictions of our community are portrayed. There is a failure to do justice to the thriving communities that we are.
As my predecessors like Xochitl Montaño, who started the hashtag reclamation of #Latina on Tumblr, and the creator of #HispanicGirlsUnited, who paved the way for social media campaigns reclaiming our Latinx identities, I believe that there is still work to be done to raise a higher consciousness about our identities.
Even with the gain of our own content on social media, and the rise of Latinxs who have given us revolutionary re-imaginations of our identities, the dilution of our identities has continued. Media consistently portrays us as passive and needy virgins or hot and spicy feminine women. These oversimplifications have been used against us to make us more consumable to nativist communities in the United States or to position us as threats to resources, post-NAFTA.
#SomosMás is a chance for us to reclaim our Latinx and Latina identity on Twitter. It is not a denial of our Latinx sexuality; rather it is an expansion of the narrative that all Latinx and Latina people are sexual objects for consumption. It is also a time where, as a community, we can embrace a non-binary way of being, through the usage of the hashtag #Latinx.
Tweet #SomosMás on October 9 if you believe Latinxs and Latinas deserve a better life and social media print! Tweet #Latina, #Latinx, #SEO, @vilmitasaurus, @bevisiblelatina, and to your friends, favorite SEO buddies, social media platforms and news sites.
If you’re feeling your selfie game that day, please share an image with a sign depicting an important aspect of your #Latina and #Latinx identity.
I am also asking members of the SEO community to help out. How? Well, you can help out by offering us skills on #SEO and more scholarships for young Latinx people like me to learn how to code. Let’s work together to move away from the model of marketing for and start marketing with our Latinx and Latina communities and help us reclaim our identity on social media.
To hear more about the #SomosMás, Twitter Storm and my own Latinx musings, you can visit my blog.
Vilma Uribe is a fierce advocate for survivors of partner abuse, sexual violence, police misconduct and hate crimes and a huge policy nerd, with a particular interest in policies affecting survivors of partner abuse, LGBQ/T and Latinx communities. She received her bachelor’s degree in American studies and gender, sexuality, and feminist studies from Oberlin College in 2011. Since moving to Boston, she has worked with Renewal House and Fenway Health to support survivors of partner abuse, sexual violence, hate crimes and police misconduct. She has volunteered with the Hispanic Black Gay Coalition as a HUES board member, and currently serves as the community organizer for The Network/La Red. She has served on the MA LGTBQ Youth Commission since 2013, working with state agencies to improve the quality of services and support for LGBTQ youth in Massachusetts. You connect with her on Twitter @vilmitasaurus.