A friend of mine, however, recently pointed out that this sense of extreme self-suffiency is actually a manifestation of machismo. It's the idea that you have the strength and balls to take care of yourself and your family. You avoid asking for help even though it may have devastating effects.
Everybody knows the story of Columbus, right? He was an Italian explorer from Genoa who set sail in 1492 to enrich the Spanish monarchs with gold and spices from the orient. Not quite.
Whether you agreed with his point of view or not, Carlos Fuentes always had something to say about literature, culture and politics.
Like its art, "Chicano" is an evolutionary term. Each generation has as much right to define what a Chicano is as any generation that came before them.
The banning of ethnic studies from schools brings into question the role of education. What is the purpose of schooling? Is it solely meant to create a competent future workforce?
I deemed it a hyped up holiday, especially by Americans, endorsed by alcohol companies to boost up their sales. That was until I came to Puebla, to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Cinco de Mayo. I realized how wrong I was.
As you toss back tortilla chips, guacamole and salsa, take a moment to reflect on Cinco de Mayo, and give thanks to 4,000 Mexican rebels.
And there is the key. To accept the long-time excluded -- gays, divorced, people from other religions, for example -- as legitimate others. Not to tolerate them in a patronizing way, but to see in their different lives and perspectives a path to enrich and humanize ourselves.
Gifted with perfect pitch - an innate ability that not even most musicians have - there is no doubt that Charly is one of the most influential 'rock en español' musicians and composers in Latino America.
Today, modernization and globalization have brought vertiginous changes. The drive of those who seek the greatest reward in the shortest time span and with the least effort has led, in the case of our country, Ecuador, to a mismanagement of our natural environment.
In their pursuit of the American Dream, Hispanics are failing to protect it. Yes, we may feel confident that we will improve our financial situation over the next year. But what about the following year? And the year after that?
For us Latinos, the organized Jewish community has been an important ally in the quest for an immigration reform. And for us Jews, the alliance with the Latino community and support of its advancement keeps us in the right side of history.
It's okay to challenge status quo, even the personal ones we have come up against. I know this can be hard. We are a very loyal people. But, this is about finding your Latinoself - your identity.
On Sunday April 8, 2012 as chocolate bunnies are undressed from their gold foil outfits and the hunt for chocolate eggs scramble kids into frenzies, take a moment to give thanks to the Aztecs and Mayans. And, thank Montezuma for his 2nd revenge - our insatiable craving for chocolate.
At the very least there should have been a sign outside, a courtesy warning in giant neon letters, announcing, however preposterously, "No Se Habla Español. English-Only-Salsa-Night." It might have spared me some psychological damage to know that's what I was in for.
Born Bataan Nitollano to a Filipino father and African American mother, Joe bataan survived the rough and tumble streets of New York City's East Harlem to become the King of Latin Soul.