Category: Editorial

What Latinos are Learning from the Pandemic

Posted by Dr. Ricardo Romo Good health practices matter, but basic health practices are not enough.  All of us must follow the recommendations to  shelter in place,  practice safe distancing, and wear a mask in public settings.   Access to good health insurance makes all the difference to Latinos who need to  visit a doctor or  require hospital care.  As a state, Texas is making little progress in expanding medical insurance to a sufficient number of residents. According to, “Texas is the uninsured capital of the United States. More than 4.3 million Texans – including 623,000 children – lack...

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Pandemic Threatens Latino Student Achievement

By Dr. Ricardo Romo Schooling during the pandemic lockdown is not going well for many Latino students. Truthfully, the majority rather be in the classroom than at home. According to the New York Times, more than  50 million children in the United States will be shut out of school for this Spring semester and for the foreseeable coming months in 2020. Texas Latino children are especially at risk of losing out in the learning curve because many of their parents work in essential jobs  and thus they  have less time to spend as “teachers” in homeschooling. Latinos are 65...

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Latina Mothers Hold the Family Together

Posted By Dr. Ricardo Romo This year Latinos are celebrating Mothers’  Day in highly troubling times. The Covid-19 Pandemic is one of the greatest American health and economic crises of the last 100 years.  The nation’s death total  exceeds 70,000 and unemployment levels are nearly equal to those  of the Great Depression era. For mothers who work, being on the job, in addition to homeschooling responsibilities and  constant child care demands, has placed unprecedented physical and mental burdens on them. While many Americans are suffering from job losses, many Latina mothers  continue to supply our nation’s homes with food,...

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A Latina Who Saved Jobs

The Covid-19 pandemic has disrupted the world economy,  but  the service industries, food production and sales, as well as hotel businesses that traditionally employ Latinos in significant numbers have been especially hard hit.   Blanca Romo Garcia, whose company dates back to the Great Depression era, has been working hard to be sure their employees will not be in the unemployed lines anytime soon. Romo Garcia’s family has owned and operated the Porter Poultry Egg  business since 1936.  With the closure of restaurants and family-owned Mexican bakeries across the city of San Antonio, Porter faced a financial dilemma.   Seeing the...

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Texas Apartment Association emite Guía a los recursos para inquilinos

Por Kristi Payne La Texas Apartment Association emitió hoy una guía sobre los recursos para residentes de apartamentos en Texas que hablan español. “Muchos residentes de apartamentos podrán entender mejor la información sobre los nuevos reglamentos d moratoria en los desalojos y los programas de asistencia con la renta que les son disponibles si pueden leerla en su lengua materna,” dijo Mark Hurley, presidente de la Texas Apartment Association. “Esta guía también ayudará a los administradores de los apartamentos a comunicarse mejor y ayudar a nuestros residentes que necesiten asistencia financiera o de otro tipo, reduciendo así el estrés...

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Remembering Easter Weekend at Brackenridge Park

Easter Sunday Photo Editorial 2010 Retrospective By Dr. Ricardo Romo Easter is one of the major religious holidays for Latinos and Brackenridge Park has been a major destination for many San Antonio families who spent the Easter weekend at the Park campgrounds. Over two Easter weekends in 2009 and 2010, I walked the entire grounds of the Park for my photo story. I talked to families who had camped at the Park for 65 years straight. A selection of my 2,000 Easter photos at the Park were shown at the Witte Museum and the Institute of Texan Cultures. Included...

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Un modelo migratorio a seguir: la respuesta de Portugal al coronavirus Por Alexandra Schmitt y Elisa Massimino

Traducido por LPT Lea la historia en inglés en migrant-model-follow-portugals-response-coronavirus / Buenas noticias sobre la respuesta de un país a la pandemia de coronavirus son raras en estos días, pero Portugal recientemente proporcionó un punto brillante. El gobierno anunció que durante la pandemia, ciertos migrantes y solicitantes de asilo en el país recibirían el mismo acceso total a los servicios públicos que reciben los residentes permanentes. En un momento en que muchos países, incluido Estados Unidos, están complaciendo los impulsos nacionalistas e incluso utilizando la crisis para excluir y marginar aún más a los inmigrantes, Portugal está ejemplificando...

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The Art World of Raul Gonzalez

By Dr. Ricardo Romo Raul Gonzalez began drawing at the age of six, but never thought that a path existed for him becoming an artist until viewing the film “Blood In Blood Out,” a 1993 crime drama that featured the work of San Antonio artist, Adan Hernandez. Gonzalez was fourteen years old when he saw the movie, and he instantly connected with one of the featured characters whose painting talents enabled him to sell his art in prestigious Los Angeles galleries. High school teachers in his hometown of Houston noticed his talents and encouraged him to enter art competitions....

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Joe Bernal: Lessons from a Successful Latino Leader

Joe Bernal was a pioneer in securing educational rights and opportunities for Latinos. All San Antoniians can be proud of his many contributions. Joe Bernal was baptized Jose Maria Bernal and is known to the Westside community of San Antonio as Dr. Bernal or Senator Bernal He is often called “Chema” to close family members and friends. Bernal was raised near J.T. Brackenridge Elementary School at the corner of Brazos and Guadalupe Street. As a young student, he was often punished for speaking Spanish in school. Growing up during the Great Depression years his family had little money, and...

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Latino Entrepreneurship in the Arts.

By Dr. Ricardo Romo Andy Benavides is the quintessential example of a Latino entrepreneur. Over the past 25 years he has successfully expanded his commercial art enterprise while devoting himself to the construction of studio spaces for artists, galleries to show art works, and the promotion of monthly art events. In doing so, he has given rise to a major artistic center–”Southtown The Art District.” This area encompasses five neighborhoods: King Williams, Lavaca, Lone Star, Roosevelt, and Collin Garden. Andy Benavides grew up in the Southside of San Antonio where his love for art and business were honed at...

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Westside Memories

By Santos S. Villarreal Edited by Dr. Ricardo Romo Santos S. Villarreal, born and raised in San Antonio’s Westside, graduated from Lanier High School in 1955. Here is his account of working for Urban Renewal and HUD. The Santos S. Villarreal Memories “I graduated from St. Mary’s (BBA) in 1962. This was a time when much of the business sector was shut out to minority graduates. We were all having trouble finding jobs within our business majors. We accepted whatever came our way. In my case it was social work and I loved my job I applied for any...

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The Rise of Latino Political Leaders

By Dr. Ricardo Romo When I returned to Texas in January 1980 after a 13 year hiatus, I found my hometown of San Antonio undergoing monumental political transformations and subtle social and cultural changes. Every town and city in America experienced change over the latter part of the 20th century. Some more than others.      A quarter century after WWII, while the Alamo city was undergoing changes it was trailing significantly behind Houston and Dallas in improving its economic footing as these other Texas cities surged ahead in population, skilled jobs, and overall wealth. Community leaders such as Henry Cisneros...

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