Latino Pride flying high after Super Bowl Performances

Image Credit:

Asia Arce, Editor In Chief

Super Bowl LIV took place this past Sunday with the Kansas City Chiefs winning over the San Francisco 49ers. However, I truly believe it was the entertainment from Sunday night that will leave a lasting impression on most people. Many people are dubbing this past Super Bowl as the the “Latino Super Bowl,” as people all across America witnessed the culture and voices of the Latinx/Hispanic community. Demi Lovato, who is half Mexican, sang a beautiful rendition of our nation’s national anthem, setting the bar pretty high right from the start.

Though this was incredible to begin with, it was the halftime show that truly took my breath away. I never thought that in a million years, two Latina artists would headline the halftime show, perform hits in Spanish, and bring in surprise Latino artists who mainly sing in Spanish. Needless to say, this halftime show had my Boricua heritage exploding out of my body. From the time Shakira started dancing, to J.LO’s Puerto Rican flag outfit, I was dancing the entire time with the widest smile on my face.

Football is an American sport and nothing is more American, to me, than representing a united front for all those who are considered AMERICAN. Many forget that Puerto Rico is a part of America and I believed this halftime show reminded them just how powerful us Boricuas are in this country. This was a win not only for Colombians or Puerto Ricans, but for all Latinx people in America. Emanuel Vazquez, a junior here at the university, had similar feelings whilst watching the show. “In my opinion, it was one of the greatest Hispanic cultural representations I have ever seen at a sports event. My Puerto Rican and Latino pride increased”.

However, Latinx people were not the only group of people represented during this show. Many do forget that Shakira is half Lebanese on her father’s side. During her set, Shakira belly danced and even took part in performing zaghrouta, which is the rolling/wagging of the tongue used for celebrations within the Arab/Middle Eastern community. She even performed her song, “Ojos Así”, in which she sings a few verses of Arabic. She also had Arab and Middle Eastern instruments, such as the mijwiz and the doumbek.

Stéphanie Kiluba, a close family friend of mine, who is of Congolese descent, also enjoyed Shakira’s representation. “It was refreshing to see that we are being recognized and that so many people were able to embrace it and not make fun of it”. Omar Mohamed, who is of Egyptian and Irish ancestry, believed that Shakira “already proudly represents” her culture, in terms of her belly dancing. He also did not feel offended by memes of Shakira performing zaghrouta and was grateful she gave our generation a memorable meme.

Overall, watching the Super Bowl in its entirety this weekend was a terrific experience. Not only was there a more engaging football contest than last year’s Super Bowl, but the halftime show had millions of American all over the country in awe during the cultural performance.