In my opinion, Hispanic Heritage Month should be extended to a year. Latinos are accomplishing so much in this country that one month just doesn’t do it for us.
But hey…no reason to toss out our Hispanic Heritage Month that starts on September 15th . With 50 million Latinos and growing in the U.S.; we are a wealth of history, heritage and culture. Our contributions and accomplishments are too many to squeeze into one month.
A Refresher Course on Hispanic Heritage Month
Hispanic Heritage Month celebrates the accomplishments and contributions of Latinos in the United States. It starts on September 15, because that’s the anniversary of independence for five Latin American countries–Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. Yes, it’s their 4th of July.
Mexico won its independence on September 16th and Chile on September 18th.
How It Got Started
In September 1968, the U.S. Congress authorized President Lyndon B. Johnson to proclaim National Hispanic Heritage Week. In 1988, Congress amended the proclamation and established National Hispanic Heritage Month. It now runs from September 15th to October 15th.
Hispanic Heritage Month Should Not Be Ignored
Every newspaper, television and radio station and online news site should be making an effort to talk about what Latinos have contributed to make life better for others in this country, and in local communities.
Make sure the media is taking notice of this important month. They should be profiling local Latinos leaders in politics, law enforcement, business, medicine, non-profits, and those with grass root efforts. And yes, even non-Latinos appreciate the information.
Getting Media Attention
If the local media isn’t giving you your dose of Hispanic Heritage Month; you have to let them know it should not be ignored. You can probably name a list of Latinos in your cities and towns that are really making their mark. Maybe you’ll just have to spoon-feed those names to your local news stations and newspapers.
I say do it! Do your part. We have to toot our own horn. All you have to do is email, call, write a letter or do all three. It’s very easy. We can’t complain as Latinos if we don’t do our part to educate those who don’t understand how important our Hispanic heritage is to us and should be to everyone else.
Want to spread the word about Hispanic Heritage Month? Here are links to your local television news directors and newspaper editors. I hope it helps.
Remember it doesn’t hurt to try, and also remember advertisers keep an eye on how many people tune in or out.
Here’s the list of local television stations: Station Index
Here’s a list of your local newspapers: U.S. Newspapers
For more, visit the Law Library of Congress
Happy Hispanic Heritage Month!