I am black - because this is my race. My ancestors history is very rich. From my father's side my family is west Indian and Caribbean, the reason for this is because they arrived to Panama for the Construction of the Panama Canal and helped with the construction in 1903-1914 (Hence a lot of last names in English). My mother's side is also West Indian and Caribbean, some were running from slavery seeking liberty…. YES! Slaves!!! (Let us not forget that slaves were taken to different parts of the world.) Her family is also Indian (our native Indians).
I am Latina because I was born in Panama - a Latin country. Therefore this infusion makes me Latina and me being black makes me an AFRO-LATINA.
So, when you see my skin color - Yes I am Black, When you get to know my background and culture - I have West Indian and Caribbean in my blood , when you ask me where I am from I am Panamanian born and raised and when you ask me what I am I will always answer you I am AFRO- LATINA.
Panama is a very multi cultural and multi-racial country with a very rich culture and the term itself means "Crizol de Razas" which in English is translated as "Melting Pot". Other countries in the Caribbean and Latin America share this similar uniqueness.
This is a great time to EMBRACE our differences and acknowledge who we are. WE ARE AFRO LATINOS!!!
I am proud of who I am and where I come from and I will not change it for anything else. I am Afro Latina -
Dez A La Mocha