Magazine article The Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education

Me, My Column and Hispanic Outlook

Magazine article The Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education

Me, My Column and Hispanic Outlook

Article excerpt

I have done a lot of things in life, from shining shoes on the streets of my hometown, (I still have my original shoeshine box), to picking cotton to sacking groceries at my grandfather's grocery store to being a Washington and foreign correspondent to working in the Nixon White House.

From the start, encouraged and assisted by my parents toward a college education as being the gold standard, and fed by an innate, unquenchable curiosity about life's ways and means, I was steered toward journalism with a few career detours along the way.

Its origins may be in my chicken and the egg story. A neighbor tended a flock of egg-laying chickens and I was curious to find out how eggs were produced, which my mother subsequently explained.

So one day I sat out in the chicken coop, determined to see a hen lay an egg. They never did during my watch and the neighbors scooted me out saying I was constipating the hens' production.

Another noteworthy lesson came from an irate reader early in my journalism career castigating me for my tack on a local issue.

"Don't write something because you want to say something," he exhorted me. "Write something because you have something to say."

I took that to heart and both have been part of my guidelines in a journalism career interrupted by a long sojourn into Washington politics and international banking.

After my retirement from banking about 14 years ago, Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education invited me to return to my first love, journalism, and write a column on any topic I chose but with a Latino theme.

It was a d rea m assign ment given the ongoing d iaspora of Latinos from Latin America and the pursuits of the established U.S. Latino community on its way to becoming the largest minority group in the country while overcoming its hyphenated-American syndrome.

There's a vast amount of stories yet to be told about the U.S. Latino with his rich history and amalgamation into American society, a work still in progress.

Prejudices aside, no ethnic or racial group can approach the U.S. Latino community with its vast antecedents and march into the future. What makes it all the more interesting is that we are a pluralistic community with each group maintaining its own particular background yet blending into a common core. …

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