Racism, Latino Style

In case you didn't know, Latinos are not immune to the parasite that is racism. There is a long harsh history of racism against black and indigenous populations of the Americas. But, we deny its existence, though the stats are pretty clear. We pretend it's ok too -- it's a cultural thing -- when we call someone's skin humilde, or he's a negrito Charlie, to name just a few of the micro aggressions.

Early this month we saw it rear its ugly when a Univision host Rodner Figueroa -- who is gay and should know better -- said on the air that our our fierce and gorgeous First Lady Michelle Obama looked like a cast member of the Planet of the Apes. He laughed. And laughter was heard in the background. Then a few hours later he was fired.

When I heard about the incident, tears welled up. I was hurt. I can't help but be hurt for black women and young girls who watch his show. For me. For each other. The non-Black Latinos are also maimed by his derogatory comments. Everyone is affected when acts of violence happen--the perpetrator, his target and the collateral damage--the witnesses.

Rejuvenate. Renew. Reboot. Spring is here!

Welcome Spring

It arrives tomorrow in the Northern Hemisphere. The turtles are returning to give birth on Caribbean beaches they were born a long time ago. The earth is giving birth, again. It was challenging at times to fully appreciate that underneath the sea of snow, the earth was fertile and teeming with life. But the earth is a teacher and a healer and when you surrender to her wisdom and pay attention, life does taste sweeter.

Tomorrow's Spring Equinox arrives in a rare cosmic event with a Supermoon +  Solar eclipse. The earth will be bathed in powerful healing energy. Use this time to renew, reset + rejuvenate.

Spring Equinox is a time when day and night - light and dark --  are equal.

The earth will balance itself. And it does this every year. For you without you even asking or knowing! But this year, the heavens are giving us an extraordinary gift and lift with the combined energies of a solar eclipse and a Supermoon. Moon. Sun. Earth. Need I say more my beloveds?

We all have an internal GPS connected to that divine flow. Tune in. This GPS takes us to places we belong. Home to ourselves. We can welcome the earth's wisdom and use this time to reboot our soul.

More on rituals...

My stories for NBC News...

Cinema Tropical: Beyond Hollywood, A Wealth of Latino Films

'Pelo Malo' Director Mariana Rondon: Why Her Movie Hits A Nerve

The Year In Latino Books

Ten Great Latino Albums of 2014

Latinos Living in Gringolandia

Filmmakers Explore Tourism Toll on the Planet

One of my spiritual advisors suggested that whenever I have an issue or I am stuck, emotionally, physically, spiritually, creatively-- with me or someone -- I ask myself two questions:

Where do I need to see grace?
Where do I need to see poetry?

The two questions are powerful because automatically I become the observer in my life. And I pull back and watch me. Spirit seems to move though me and let me see answers to questions I did not even know I had.

"Learn the art of celebrating yourself - for no reason, for no cause. Just to be is enough, more than enough. To be part of the whole is such a great metamorphosis that you cannot resist – you have to dance, you have to sing, you have to express your joy, your blissfulness." ~Osho

Susan Sontag on love...

... "I'm only interested in people engaged in a project of self-transformation..." 

This beautiful artwork with the even more gorgeous musings on love by the extraordinary Susan Sontag is available for purchase. Proceeds benefit a foundation supporting women writers, A Room of Her Own.

The eloquence of baby boomers

It's been a while since I posted. Working on several projects. One of them, The Boomer List, comes out this fall. Stay tuned for the full film. But the Newseum will host an exhibit exploring the generation and will include the stunning portraits by Timothy Greenfield-Sanders of the influential subjects featured in the film.