Friday, February 26, 2016

Rubio, Cruz and the Politics of Latino Authenticity

The emergence of two politicians of Cuban ancestry as serious contenders for the Presidency of the United States this year has generated a contentious debate within the Latino community as to their “Latino authenticity.” Are they really Hispanic or LINOs (“Latinos in name only)? In a recent Republican Presidential debate, Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz seemed base their Latino authenticity on their ability to speak some Spanish. Others think it is just a question of where you or your parents were born. Still others argue that you are Latinos if you say or think you are. But if it is that simple, why all of the contentiousness over this question?

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