Miami LGBTQ Pride Parade and a Baptism by Glitter

Meandering my way through a crowd splashed in the colors of the rainbow, I found myself fully immersed into a parade that not only celebrated the pride of being fabulously different, but also the bond of a community bound by their love of loving freely.

Miami’s yearly Gay Pride Parade, a weekend-long celebration, once again proved that the Magic city is the home for unapologetic misfits. Throughout my re-exploration of Collin’s Avenue, where the streets were closed off to make way for extraveggant floats and dancers, I came in contact with people of all ages, ethniticites, and religions. That weekend, only one thing mattered: unity.

The crowd sparkled in the sunlight with their vibrant costumes and glitter. A man, sporting the latest makeup trends while holding a sign that read “Free Glitter” approached me as I was merely participating in the parade as a speculator through the lens of my camera.  Before I knew it, my face, clothes and hair, was drenched by a silver waterfall.

And just like that, having arrived as a stranger, I emerged from the crowd illuminated by glitter and as a member of the family.

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From the Editors: You Can Count on Us

By Edysmar Diaz-Cruz & Daniela Morales

screen-shot-2016-10-14-at-9-10-50-pmAs editors of Miami Lakes Educational Center’s student paper, the Harbinger, we pride ourselves in leading a newsroom comprised of young minds, young talent, and young voices. We may be high schoolers, but we know what it takes to publish authentic news when the student body needs to hear it most. We share the stories that take place within our school, we analyze the politics in our local community, and we are well aware of the struggles facing journalists of the future.

Continue reading “From the Editors: You Can Count on Us”

Help Me Get to Yale University This Summer!

After a long year of hard work and overcoming adversity, good news finally came knocking at my door on April 22. It came in the form of an email from Questbridge, an organization that helps students from low-income families reach top tier schools. As a junior, I applied for College Prep which serves as a great boost forward to college. Honestly, as I was opening my application to check if I got in, I was already preparing for rejection. I did not expect to see the word ‘congratulations’ yet there they were– blinking at me in big red letters followed by ‘you are a college prep scholar‘ in blue.

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I scroll down to see the awards and I couldn’t contain my excitement any longer. I find out that I’m invited to a National College Admissions Conference at Yale University, where I’ll be informed about the college admission process and get to interact with Questbridge’s 30 partner schools in their college fair. Now, I start to read further and find out that I have to find a way to get there as opposed to Questbridge flying me out. This is where it gets tricky. Plane tickets are expensive in addition to Hotel costs. My mom will be coming as well (and mostly likely my little sister) so the costs triple! My mom vowed to get us there, but she can’t do this on her own. Which is why I’m swallowing my pride and asking for help. I have opened a GoFundMe account and already I’m halfway to my goal; it would be great if you guys could donate however much you deem necessary so that I can attend the conference.

The link is the following: https://www.gofundme.com/5k549x64

 

Brothers and Sisters of Miami

Often people in multiethnic societies, such as in the city of Miami, share a common dream. Most envision a future where they can make their immigrant parents proud or they hope that one day they can overcome the “minority” label that they all share and become someone much more than that. I know I do. However, a lot of these people—a lot of my people—feel discouraged along the way. They see these dreams, these surreal almost impossible dreams, fade away when life throws them one obstacle after another. As a young adult, I want to prove to them that they can indeed achieve their dreams. I want to instill in them comfort that they’re not alone, that we’re all going through this together, and that we are one.

I often look around my classroom and see a spectrum of colors. Blacks, Asians, and Hispanics all sit and listen to the teacher attentively, eager to ace the next assignment, eager to pass the class, eager to graduate high school, eager to chase their dreams. Every of one them has a story and baggage to carry—not only in the form of heavy textbooks but in the form of struggle, the kind of struggle that often plagues people of multiethnic societies.

These people are my friends. Jonathan Tagoe, son of a Ghanaian immigrant, wants to repay his mother for all the sacrifices she’s ever made for him by investing into his future through his education. Kaitlyn Pujols, a Puerto Rican native, wants to prove people wrong; she wants to show the world that Puerto Ricans are far more than the lazy, obnoxious stereotypes that they are made out to be and does so by pouring herself into her passions. Andres Orta, son of Puerto Ricans, wants a future with financial stability. Fransheska Datilus is of Haitian descent and aspires to become a civil engineer and she wants to, “show the world that this Haitian labeled African American female can break barriers and innovate the world.”

And finally myself, Edysmar Diaz-Cruz, oldest child of Colombian and Venezuelan immigrants, dreaming someday of becoming someone worth remembering—whether it’s through a byline in an aging newspaper or by the lips of the people I’ve influenced throughout my life.

I want to help people like Jonathon, Kaitlyn, Andres, and Fransheska realize that they are not alone. I want to show them that we are all brothers and sisters living under the same household of hopes and dreams. I want to help them realize the common bond that they already have by showing them that I—one of their fellow siblings—can indeed go above and beyond the minority label by getting accepted into college and by pursuing my dream of making a name for myself. By doing so, I hope to encourage to them into doing the same knowing very well that they are not alone.

Street Photography: Key Biscayne

It’s been so long since I’ve done street photography! Ah, it feels so great to finally have a fresh collection of work that I can admire and share with the world. I hope you guys enjoy these new set of photographs :))

I Got Published on Outloud.com!

Right before my sophomore year ended,  my journalism teacher assigned us to interview a celebrity. I had no idea who I was going to interview, how I would get in contact with them, and if my nerves would take the best of me. I was aware of this assignment for months now but nothing came to mindwell nothing realistic, that is.

Then I got a follow on twitter.

Continue reading “I Got Published on Outloud.com!”

Here’s What I Love About Miami

The humidity may be unfriendly to my hair but I welcome it, along with the super bipolar weather that can either make or break a good beach day. In comparison to the weather in other areas of the country, Miami’s weather sounds like a pretty good break from the extremes of the temperature scale. Contrary to what one might think, the weather isn’t the only reason why Miami attracts tourists from all corners of the world. It’s because of the livelihood of the people, mixing of cultures, the blooming of the arts, and most importantly, the crazy amount of things that one can do in Miami that people come, fall in love, and stay.

According to a quick google search, here’s a few things to look forward to in Miami:

゚WYNWOOD WALLS ゚LINCOLN ROAD ゚ SOUTH BEACH ゚ CALLE OCHO ゚CRUISES ゚THE EVERGLADES ゚PROXIMITY TO THE KEYS ゚ULTRA FEST ゚AMERICAN AIRLINES ゚AND SO MUCH MORE…

I have lived in Miami for a pretty large portion of my life, but I remain a tourist in my own city. This may sound like a bummer–but I don’t think so. Not knowing all the nooks and crannies in my city gives a me a larger sense of adventure when I do go out and get intimate with my home-sweet-home.