Hispanic Heritage Month

An entire culture boiled down to 30 days.

How does one fit an entire person’s culture and history and celebrate it within four weeks? America is known for being a salad bowl where we are one nation with many different cultures and elements. Hispanic culture and history have contributed to helping shape this country and as a reward, it’s celebrated from Sept. 15 through Oct. 15. 

Americans celebrate the history and influence that Hispanic culture has made. Not to mention, how many Hispanic figures have changed the way we see the world. So many influential people have given a future to future generations. The only problem is that people don’t really know these days are celebrated. Most people think the day to celebrate Hispanic culture, Mexican culture specifically, is on Cinco de Mayo, which is far from the truth. 

Cinco De Mayo is a celebration that is held on the fifth of May to commemorate the anniversary of Mexico’s victory when they defeated the French Empire in the Battle of Puebla that took place in 1862. This day is not the day to celebrate the independence of Mexico. Mexico’s Independence Day is September 16th which is when they got their independence after being under the rule of the Spaniards. Just like the celebration itself, a large portion of Abraham Lincoln High School students and their cultures are absurdly mis/underrepresented and these students themselves do not even realize the vast level of ignorance. 

“I think it shows a lack of respect to the Mexican culture and proves that we need to become more knowledgeable on the actual history of the majority of the student body’s cultural backgrounds,” said Senior Anja Vanderzee.

A large majority of Hispanic Heritage month consists of societies refusal to care, or even pretending to care about its true meaning and value. It’s no wonder big companies exaggerate their themes until the month is over, then it’s as if it never happened at all. An example of this is during Hispanic Heritage Month when companies sell merchandise with cheesy phrases on them. They make money off of cultures and exploit the culture itself in order for them to be winners in the situation. There are also many other cultures that don’t get enough recognition, like Black History Month or Women’s History Month. I understand that we don’t have enough days in the year to celebrate every single person, but the cultures and people we do celebrate, we should truly care about and acknowledge them even after their month passes by. It’s important to educate ourselves and others who don’t know much about these cultures. It’s a culture of someone who we may not know, but that doesn’t mean it’s not important to them.