|Paper||Hill Air Force Base Newspapers|
|Rights||No Copyright - United States (NoC-US)|
|Publisher||Digitized by J. Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah|
|Paper||Hill Air Force Base Newspapers|
1. i 18 LIFETIMES Sept. 20, 1991 rilltop Times What s in a name? Ethnic pride, roots for starters cept depicts all of the various subgroups into one Hispanic family. like myself, for instance, "A Hispanic-America- n sees himself as a Mexican under the Hispanic umbrella. But the way I perceive myself isn't necessarily the way a Chilean, a Paraguayan or an Argentinean may perceive me. He probably perceives me as an American, although I look very much like him and speak Spanish quite a bit like Editor's note: A dinner dance is planned for Saturday at the HillAFB Officers' Club. The guest speaker u ill be Col Michael Navarro, commander, SSSth Tactical Fighter Wing. Tickets for the event are $10 per person. Contact Tom Garcia, Ext. 70563, or Sam Trujillo, Ext. 73970, for tickets or additional information. HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH SEPT. 15 OCT. 15 (71 by Rudi Williams i 0 American Forces Information Service They were called all kinds of irritating names: Spanish-origin- , Spanish-speaking- Latinos Latin, Hispanic-American- , Latin-American- s, Indo-Hispani- c, s, Afro-Hispani- s. Spanish-American- understood that Hispanic was the best alternative available." In short, Hispanics are citizens of the United States who trace their ancestry to Latin America and Spain. "Although we can't claim the word is a solution, it allows the Hispanic community to focus on things other than semantics," he said. The dilemma was that "we're a varied people; from said very white and blond to black and Oliverez. "There are African, Italian and Oriental Hispanics; to be Hispanic, you don't have to be a mixture of populations indigenous to the southern United States, Central and South America or Spain. It's a combination that has culture and language that is, born and raised and acculturated in the Western Hemisphere or the southern part of the Western Hemisphere." Oliverez said for the process of programs for jobs and political, social and economic issues in the United States, Hispanic serves as a word that in one con 100-perce- A White House committee, of which Oliverez was a member, was formed to find a generic term with universal application for Americans of Spanish ancestry. "All the terms in vogue at the time Chicano, were anand looked from at different discussed ranked, gles," said Oliverez. "We finally settled on the word 'Hispanic.' "Having accepted the term doesn't mean that every Cuban, Mexican, Puerto Rican or other subgroup bought off on it," Oliverez said. "But they , Hispanic-America- n It's him. c, Iberian and others. Symbolism and semantics often stood in the way of working on important issues because there was Tf6 neutral, term that connoted some of the culture and heritage of each subgroup of Americans of Spanish ancestry. "Not having a name acceptable to every group created dissension, conflict of interest and it contributed more to identifying what's separate instead of what's united," said Manuel Oliverez, manager of the Department of Defense Hispanic Employment Program at the Pentagon. Oliverez said the new government realized in 1969 that a new way had to be found to identify Hispan-ics- . Spanish-speaking- .rx nt "As a Mexican, I listen if someone is talking about Hispanics," he said. "When we specify Cuban, Puerto Rican, El Salvadoran, Nicaraguan or other subgroups, we're concentrating on the differences instead of emphasizing our similarities." Now, more than 20 years after finding a term acceptable to the subgroups, another problem of identity is emerging. Just as it looked for a new way to identify itself in 1969, the Hispanic community is questioning whether the term is still applicable in the 1990s, said Oliverez. He said the reason for the rekindled concern about e agreement identity is the North American that's expected to be approved by Congress and the president. The agreement will create new relationships betw2en the United States, Canada and Mexico, which Oliverez thinks will cause the Hispanic itself and its role in Americommunity to can society. He also cited increasing relationships with Latin American countries as a reason for free-trad- ne concern. "Hispanic is a domestic term that has no meaning to our more than 290 million Hispanics to the south of us," said Oliverez. "I believe as we expand commercial, economic and social relationships beMexicans and Latin tween Hispanic-AmericanAmericans, we need to find a neutral term that ties us together with our brothers and sisters to the south of us. 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