What does humankind mean to you?
Humankind = one kind. It expresses unity, understanding, and acceptance. It is love found more profoundly, beyond physical features or appearances. It’s soul ties, passionate hearts, and the beauty of experiencing silence with others and yet still hearing each other loud and clear. Humankind is listening to one another without the need of expression.
What’s the best advice that you could give to someone who wants to be an ally?
To practice seeing the world beyond personal perspective. Learn about cultures. Learn about up comings. Learn about traditions. Take the time to study beyond your personal upcoming. Knowledge is power. Embrace it. But also put it into action. Become friends with people who have different backgrounds, engage in their lifestyles, have uncomfortable conversations, truly allow yourself to learn from the world.
Can you tell us a time when you might have been discriminated against? Or felt unimportant? Or a time when you had self doubt? How did you overcome that type of adversity?
I grew up in dance. I started dancing at the age of 3, taking 5 classes 3 times a week, which turned into 14 years of dance and then I transitioned into competitive cheerleading as I got older. With that being said my sister and I were always the only Mexican girls. I had a ton of friends. I was an all-around kind of person. I was friends with white people, black people, Asian people, I become friends with people for their heart, not for their appearances. I came across uncomfortable conversations with people who were Latinos like me. In high school a lot of groupies existed. Nerds with nerds, athletes with athletes, the popular’, etc. Latinos did not understand why I ventured out so much into other “groupies.” It was like because I was Mexican, I was supposed to only hang out with Latinos. This was a personal battle that I faced for a while. I was constantly trying to figure out if by being accepting of others and seeing the world through different lenses, meant I was turning my back on my culture? But I realized that it only made me much more valuable. Through the years I have been able to maintain a balance between being a proud Latina and embracing my culture, but also embracing the new culture I grew up with in America. Learning not to feel guilty to live fully in both.
What’s your greatest wish for the world?
My wish for the world would be for it to be a place where everyone felt like they “belonged.” For everyone to feel a sense of purpose, existence, and that without them the world would be incomplete.
What is pride to you?
Pride is embracing individuality. Standing behind your purpose, and never letting anything nor anyone change your mind.
If there were one word that you could use to solve the world’s problem, what would it be and why?
Kindness. It costs nothing to be kind, so be kind. We never truly know what people are going through, a kind gesture goes a long way.