Latinitas - A Strong Voice for Latina Youth

Anyone else noticing the trend in Austin where railing on "wetbacks" is still an issue. Two other radio personalities are getting suspended for insinuating the term "wetbacks" in Austin.

Jason and Deb of 101.X were referring to wet vacs on the air, vacuums for cleaning up water, but then began to allude to the term wetbacks in their comments. Their "accident" and suspensions shed light on a big issue in Austin media - there are not Latinos on the air (excluding Spanish language radio). Mimi on 93.3 is one of the few Latinos, if the only, on commercial radio in Austin and the public radio side is no better. KUT has Ruxandra Guidi and Crystal Chavez for a few brief minutes in the morning, Laurie Gallardo on music and a weekly 1/2 hour dedicated to Latino USA, but the remaining 23 hours of the day of each week are usually middle aged white guys playing the same Iron and Wine songs over and over.

This is the not the first time Latinos are the target of racial slurs. Austin's country radio host was axed earlier this Fall for the outright use of the word wet backs and a member of Georgetown's (Austin's bedroom community) city council referred to wet backs during a council meeting last year.

Austin is a politically conscious city for the most part. It makes you wonder what's happening elsewhere in the smaller communities here and throughout the United States.

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Comment by April on October 18, 2009 at 3:35pm
Wow... I still can't believe that people think that it is appropriate to use racial slurs so commonly. People may argue and say that with "free speech" anything goes, but how will we as a country ever grow positively if we cannot come together as one? When someone uses such a word as "wetback", even if they are targeting it at a certain individual jokingly, it will always affect or hurt more people in the end. I believe that people should say what they have to say, but make it appropriate. There are kids out there everywhere who pick up on the actions of others, and negativity is the easiest and worse thing to imprint on these kids today. I hope that these two talk show hosts have come to realize that people actually listen to what they are saying and what they say can affect not only their career, but someone else's life as well.




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