Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Soy Afro- Panameña!

“What are you? I thought you were black!”
I often hear this when people  find out my parents are Panamanian.  Looking down at my arm  and responding with a sarcastic, “Oh, I thought I was too,” is how I usually dismiss the statement when I am not in the mood to explain the difference between race and ethnicity. Being questioned about my background is something I have grown accustom to, as it has happened my entire life. As a result, I have made it a point to represent my culture whenever possible.

Natural Born Orgullo

Embracing my Panamanian and West Indian background was something that was taught to me at a very young age.  Both of my parents were born and raised in Panamá, but past generation from both sides of their families originated from West Indian countries. My father’s family is from Barbados and my mother’s family is from Jamaica. Both families migrated to Panamá to help with the construction of the Panamá Canal. This is where my family gets our darker pigmentation and our West Indian traditions from. Being a direct decedent of Panamanian parents is something I have always held close to me,like a badge of honor, displaying it proudly throughout my entire life by wearing T-shirts and accessories with the Panamá flag on them.
Read the rest of the article here.

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