Latin Women as News Anchors

My name is Rosa Maria Hernandez; I am a junior at San Francisco State. I am a single mother who prides herself in family and friends. I love to write about topics that I find interesting. I never rally read any other blogs and some of the ones that I have recently are merely on entertainment. But more and more do I find it more a necessity that there should be more blogs on real life issues. This only gives us an opportunity to highlight this generation’s point of view on women struggles. I started to take interest in women rights just as I got old enough to realize there was an issue. The equal opportunity that we should all have either is economically or educationally. There has been so much that has changed in our society and the direction that we are headed, is an opportunity for women to recognize that we do have power and only together change can happen. As I get older and wiser I find myself more and more inviting to take pride in my community and self. I have empowered myself and given myself the opportunity to set a great example to my daughter and give her a platform that’s clear and a successful view of what this world has to offer. I have come a long way and have great life experiences I only look forward to what life has to bring. I will be discussing a bit of how Latina women are portrayed in the media and particularly, Latina newscasters.

Much of what our society knows or remembers is based off images, rather it be television, movies or other media outlets. The individual will build their social identities, and the understandings of your biology through intellectual texts produced by the media and their intended audiences. There have been an increasing number of media sources that has objectified Latin women and continues to represent Latin women as over-sexualized objects. I will lay emphasis on Latin women as news anchor and ultimately dissect how they are catering to the male gaze as well as reporting news.

If you haven’t already compared American women anchors to Latin women anchors, you will clearly see Latin women continue the stereotype of the sexual agent. They’re generally wearing tight clothing, short skirts and high heels. Compared to the American women anchors that wear blazers and button ups. Think of the two side by side, which of the two will be respected in the industry and given notability. Women are already at an advantage in a used to be male dominant industry. While slightly more than half of local television news anchors are now women, women still make up only 28 percent of local news directors and 16 percent of the general managers at TV stations that air local news.

Lets get into how Latin new stations vary from American stations. For example,
It’s only in the American news media that has appointed a women anchor, hired as a direct anchor versus a co-anchor. Katie Couric was named the first lead reporter for two CBS Reports series, which aired across all CBS News platforms. When you try to research Latina anchorwomen the only thing that generally comes up are hot news anchors, hottest women in media ECT. Again, Latin women are tagged and linked with sexuality and nothing intellectual or appointed at any level of success in the news. The media continues to objectify Latin women as sex kittens; they degrade them by placing them in a position that they are objects of entertainment

In the Latin community we must first fight against the stereotypes that has been appointed in the media. According to Roger Knight,

“Hispanic professionals must be aware of these differences in perception of the Latino/a stereotype, as it might prove invaluable for personal career advancement as well as for the professional development of the Hispanic workforce and its impact in the U.S. economy as a whole.” Its clear that we are a disadvantage to the media, and yet we still continue to play into these stereotypes. What does that tell you about our communities? In my opinion, it just gives discredit to individuals as well as makes it more difficult to advance in their areas of profession.

It’s known that the Latin community by 2050 will surpass any ethnic group in majority. The community must start now to overcome stereotypes and start representing the community in a better more respectable way. When you look back in time when the first wave feminist began to fight for the equal rights, women were oppressed and giving little to nothing liberty as to what they could achieve. Now you look at how far we have come and you see women still oppressed, but with the ability to achieve just about anything. When I say oppressed I am referencing to the fact that women still find themselves having to cater to the male gaze. For example, Latin anchorwomen they cant just report the news; they have to first be ready to attract the viewers’ eyes with their beauty and over sexualized clothing. It’s as if the news wasn’t enough.

Nothing seems to fall short then to just sexy it up. This really brings me to think that nothing in this generation can just be what it is without adding sex to it. Even Disney has crossed over to the side; their programs targeted for teenagers have become sexualized. Teenagers in the shows look like their adults, act like adults and even talk like adults. They show young teenagers kissing and obsessing with their sex counterparts. I think sometimes, where will the line be crossed, its unfortunate that we have gone down a path that just seems too far-gone to return. I figure if we can start with our own community and rise above all stereotypes and show the society that the Latin community stands above all stereotypes. One great example, Sonia Sotomayor, made this great quote that states, “I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn’t lived that life.” When I read that quote it really just made me think how the society indicates what is acceptable and what is norm.

Latin women are seen more as sex objects than an intellectual woman, who work hard and are multifaceted. The norm has been set; the white woman is the intellectual, the conservative and the most successful. At this point in time, its evident we have come along way as a community and now with such great influences like Sonia Sotomayor as our new Supreme Court justice and many other Latin women who are becoming more and more successful. I hope that it only brings more credibility to our community and the stereotypes will soon be a thing of the past.

Latin women in the news should take pride in the position they hold, they are the voices that broadcast what’s going on in our world. Because we are aware of the stereotypes and they hold such an important position, they should stop catering to what the society holds them to be. I feel if the women in media created a new standard for Latin women, the younger generations would have a better sense of what to look up to.

I believe that sooner than later, the Latin community will overcome the stigma that is related with the community. New standards will be set, and the women will be seen as intelligent agents rather than sexual.

Sources:

Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania, “The Glass Ceiling Persists: The 3rd Annual APPC Report on Women Leaders in Communication Companies,” December 2003

Roger Knight,Research Support Analyst, Institute for Latino Studies
University of Notre Dame http://www.nd.edu/~latino

http://network.nshp.org/profiles/blogs/hispanic-stereotypes-how-they

Sonia Sotomayor famous quotes

http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/s/sonia_sotomayor.html

Wikipedia

Posted on October 27, 2011, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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