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Relations Between Blacks and Latinos in South Florida
Hello, I live in Orlando and I'm fairly new to Florida and I had some questions about the racial situation Down here. A kid I recently met told me that Black and Latinos don't get along to well in Miami. Especially Cubans. I'm from up north (Philly-NJ) and Blacks and Puerto Ricans get along fairly well. What is the extent of Black-Latino relations? How well do Blacks get along with non White Hispanics (Puerto Ricans, Dominicans, etc.)? How does South Florida differ from central Florida in this regard?
Thanks in advance,
Last edited by Philly Stress; 08-13-2008 at 01:32 AM..
Im glad you bought this up. well; let me just say (im tri-racial) having just moved from south florida 2 weeks ago and having lived in the Miami latino communities (miami/kendall/little havana area) I will tell you like this:
For one; the black and latino community is very segregated ok. you have (north) Miami gardens;Opa-locka; and the Liberty areas. those are the mostly black areas.
Then you have (south) Kendall,Lil havana, and Gables which is the mostly latin areas.
And there you go. As far as "get along" I will say I have had mostly latino best friends and the areas I lived in usually had a considerable latino population.
But on a broad outlook its horrible. Of course they dont get along. Its been more than once I have seen in the workplace slick discrmination between black and latinos. It is bad. I've seen people turned down for jobs; I've personally been turned down for jobs and even apartments. Here; they rather "keep it in the family" rather than accept an "outsider"
If anyone doesnt believe me; I challenge you to go to the latin areas I mentioned and see for yourself. Why is it that entire stores have nothing but hispanics working there in Kendall?
Now the black areas....arent any better. They are just as close minded as the old school cubans in the Gables. I will say the black areas arent as discrminatory as the latin neighborhoods (my opinion and experience) but they also tend to cold shoulder the latins as well, maybe because the way latinos in Miami sometimes treat many of them.
There's too much tension between the 2...If you want to get involved I wouldnt recommend it because Miami is just too narrow minded in terms of the black and latin community getting together. Clubs, workplace, neighborhoods...Its all segregated and dont let anyone try and tell you otherwise.
P.S. I also lived in Tampa and visited Orlando frequently. Now Tampa isnt as segregated as Miami is...and Orlando I just havent been there enough to comment
on it. However; my best friend from N.Y.C. who is rican says, "since many of the ricans in Orlando are newly immigrated; they tend to be very prejudice, more than the ones in Tampa toward blacks". But I dont think either place is as worse as Miami in terms of discrimination.
Last edited by UrbaneAspects; 08-13-2008 at 01:06 AM..
The situation for blacks is markedly different in the 2 cities.
Miami = Latinos from South America who live in MIA (particularly the rich downtown financial district area and South Beach) are VERY prejudiced towards blacks. Blacks generally will not get hired and are treated as very lower class, as an inferior class of humans, by rich Latinos. Unfortunately, the situation on South Beach isn't much better. Urban Weekend during Memorial Weekend (black college spring break) is dreaded by the white locals. Businesses close shop and everybody leaves. Cops arrest black visitors in DROVES. I would never go to Miami or South Beach to live or visit if I was black due to the ridiculous degree of inequal treatment I have personally witnessed. I have even seen some very rich Black Celebrities treated horribly.
Atlanta = Great city for blacks. Lots of black power bases here to keep discrimmination in check. Very black-friendly. Discrimmination does exist, yes, but nothing like the relations between Latinos and Blacks in Miami. Miami operates under a completely different culture than the rest of the U.S. (more like an actual Latin country).
I think it depends on where in South Florida. There are three chief counties and they all have their own social structure. The situation in Miami has been well described. If you want to go up to Palm Beach County (where most Latinos are Central American or Mexican), the black and Hispanic middle class is minuscule and their neighborhoods are often well integrated (without many whites), so within the neighborhood, relations end up being pretty good and there is definitely some trust. Now between whites and blacks/hispanics in general can be a different story. Broward County ranges from "no problem" to a tense feeling, although not usually extreme or politically prescribed like in Miami. There is some serious marked discrimination between the small but visible minority of poorer Latins (usually from Central America but some South Americans too) versus the majority middle class and upper class Latins (almost every Latino nationality except Mexican), also in some lower to lower middle class neighborhoods there is a definite trust issue between blacks and Hispanics (and whites too) despite the neighborhoods usually being well integrated between the three ethnic groups. I would say in middle to upper middle class neighborhoods (also usually well integrated), there usually aren't many problems and there is a good sized black middle class in the SW and parts of the NW area. West Broward is probably the best place to be black and middle class in South Florida, although the actual level of opportunity throughout the area pales in comparison to cities like Atlanta and DC (for anyone really). I would say the opportunity level is a little better than Orlando.
So, generally speaking, it depends on your socioeconomic economic level and where exactly you live. Generally the epicenter for the black middle class in South Florida is the Miramar/Pembroke Pines area and they both also have a lot of Latinos, Asians and plain ol "whites" as well so that should tell you something. However, if you are coming for opportunity, this just isn't the place (for anyone really).
And of course, your occasional racist ass hole might run their mouth anywhere.
Last edited by compelled to reply; 08-13-2008 at 09:16 AM..
I think that Compelled to Reply summarized things very well. Philly Stress, where do you plan to live in South Florida? It is a huge region and like Compelled has explained, the relations between ethnic/racial groups may vary between the different parts of the region.
Class matters. Poorer blacks are probably treated badly in a Hispanic neighborhood of any income level. Middle class blacks should be fine if they live in middle class, integrated areas (Pembroke Pines, Miramar, maybe even the Country Club area of northern Miami-Dade). Upper class blacks will likely be treated well in any middle-upper or upper income neighborhood (which tend to be heavily white - both non-Hispanic and Hispanic). I think the worst place for a black person to move would be to a working class area that is 90% Hispanic (Sweetwater, Flagami, SW parts of the City of Miami, etc.) These areas are HEAVILY Spanish-speaking and you can literally go a day without seeing another black person in some of these areas.
If you are middle class and want to live in a well-integrated area with good presence of non-Hispanic whites, Hispanics, and blacks, I would suggest West Miramar, Pembroke Pines, Sunrise/Plantation, Hollywood [all in Broward], Country Club, Country Walk, and Cutler Ridge/Bay [all in Miami-Dade]. However, be prepared to find that upper-income blacks live in white (both non-Hispanic and Hispanic) neighborhoods. This is not Atlanta and there are no upper-income or upper-middle income areas that are majority black.
Edit: I just realized that I didn't fully respond to your post because you asked about relations between blacks and specifically non-white Latinos. There are a few areas down here of which I can think where there is a good presence of both: Homestead, Cutler Ridge/Bay, Country Club, Carol City, and Miramar. I cannot comment on this situation in other areas of Broward because I am not not sure of the location of the areas where blacks and "colored" Hispanics coexist. In the Miami-Dade areas I have named I am not aware of major tension between those groups but I wouldn't be sure to say that relations are perfect either. Maybe someone who lives in one of those areas can further comment.
All I can tell you is my experience from back in school. We had all different types of blacks/Hispanics, and the different groups would hang out with each other. For example, the Colombians and Puerto Ricans would always hang out with black kids, while the Cuban kids mostly hung out with themselves and Anglos.
I'm not interested in moving to Miami at all. I'm interested in how Black and latino relations differ in South Florida from Central Florida.
I really can't comment on that because all the Hispanic areas I have visited in Orlando are pretty well-integrated with non-Hispanic white areas and none of those areas have large black populations.
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