I feel like I am back here again. Almost two years ago I wrote an blog about Latina Magazine and how they were glorifying maids in one of their articles. This was around the time that “The Help” became big at the box office. I was annoyed that a magazine that supposed to be for women can help stereotype them, but of course, this is how the media works.
Then I saw the trailer for the new show on Lifetime called “Devious Maids” about five Latinas who are (you guessed it) maids. I shake my head because this is the type of shit that getsd on my nerves. Five successful actresses playing into these roles because quite frankly, there are probably not many opportunities to play much else. However, to top it all off the executive producer is Eva Longoria (who obviously defends her show). What in the blue Django is going on here? I wont even get into Oprah’s new project called The Butler either because I’m just through with these people giving us stories that they feel we need to hear when the real stories that we should hear go untold.
So I’m going to go on record and say that 95% of all the Latinas I know are not maids, at least no in the traditional “let’s serve master” kind of way. I will say that the 5% is an uncertainty. It could’ve been completely possible that either one of my grandmother’s could have been maids, but I think they worked at a factory. I can run down a quick list of women in my family and their occupations.
I have a cousin in Harvard working on a PHD, her sister is a lawyer, my mother and two of my aunts were nurses and got their masters in Nursing Administration, my aunt from my father’s side is a retired teacher with a PHD in Education, another aunt who was a stock trader, and several others who have a college degree working in offices.
I could talk about the women who have have graduated from SU with me, or the graduate students that I worked with when I worked there. I could talk about the women that my alumni association (LANSU) has profiled. So why is there this insistent need to show Latinas in servant role? Have we not move passed this business? The true reason lies behind the fact that society, as a whole, is not willing to except the fact that a woman of color can, in fact, be strong and step out of the mold that is set in place for her.
Case in point, people LOVE Scandal. A big time attorney that has an affair with the President of the United States. You know what it sounds like to me? It sounds like society telling us that no matter how big a black woman gets, she will always a side piece. But it’s just TV right? It means nothing right? Wake up mi gente, this is how people view you through the media, but I’m quite sure that you will love this show.
Not all Latinas are Consuela from Family Guy.
P.S. There is absolutely nothing wrong with being a maid, but there a may other professions that Latina actresses could play.