Letters to the Editor: How Latinos are still insulted in the American media today

A poster of the late novelist Rudolfo Anaya, the doyen of Chicano literature
A poster of the late novelist Rudolfo Anaya, the doyen of Chicano literature, at the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque.
(Russell Contreras / Associated Press)
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To the editor: As I read Daniel A Olivas’ op-ed article, “The stories I needed as a Chicano boy were silenced. Now I tell them,” I wasn’t surprised to hear that he was insulted by one of his high school coaches. I was not surprised to hear his story about feeling unworthy and unequal to other students due to his ethnicity.

I remember telling a high school counselor in the early 1970s that I wanted to be a teacher. “Your kind do much better at secretarial,” he replied. Luckily, I knew that I was talking to a racist who had no business counseling students of color. I knew better because both my parents were college professors. My father was a writer whose name was Mario Suarez, one of the authors mentioned by Olivas.

I was lucky enough to know that I came from a culture of people who were capable of achieving great things.


Unfortunately, many children lack role models in our schools and in the media. Many of them watch shows like “The Big Bang Theory” about a group at the California Institute of Technology, where the only Hispanics portrayed are part of the clean-up crew. Chicanos are rarely portrayed on television as educated professionals. Instead they are still mainly seen in the media as domestic workers or criminals.

I am grateful for Olivas’ wonderful article. However, I am sad to report that we have a long way to go.

Laura Suarez, Lakewood