W hat exactly does being a light-skinned Latina mean for me? It means that all at once, I am just dark enough, too dark or not dark enough at all. In college, a white classmate once touched my arm and said that she loved my tan. In that moment, however, I stopped being me.
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She was Mexican and was never allowed into certain establishments due to her dark brown skin. My light skin and hazel eyes have caused some misconceptions over the years. I am Mexican-American. I speak Spanish proficiently. If I really wanted to, I could dye my hair bright auburn or strawberry blond and try to pass for white. Yes, it could have been much worse, but things like this took a toll on me. I recall wishing that I could at least be tan like my mother or brothers. One of my brothers is moreno. I thought I must be a one-in-a-million case. Why would I invite discrimination?
Brazilians, shown here gathering for Carnival, and other Latin Americans have a wide range of skin tones. For years, people have assumed this variation comes from the meeting and mixing of Native Americans, Europeans, and Africans during colonial times and later. People with lighter skin are thought to have more European ancestry, whereas those with darker skin are taken to have more Native American or African ancestry—and are often targeted for discrimination. Now, a new study of the genes of more than people from five Latin American countries undercuts the simplistic racial assumptions often made from skin color.
Top definition. Guero unknown. Guero is not to be confused with gringo. This term isn't as racialized as the other definitions would lead one to believe.