More

The machista mentality is harmful for women. These 21 tweets explain why.

It's time we start shifting away from a male-dominated mentality and into a more inclusive and realistic one.

The word machista means "a strong exaggerated sense of masculinity placing great value on physical courage, virility, domination of women, and aggressiveness."

It's a dangerous (and outdated) way of thinking that's especially prevalent within the Latino community and Spanish history, probably because the word "macho" in the Spanish language is literally the descriptor of being male.

While many cultures struggle with toxic masculinity problems, Latino culture has been one of the slowest to change and adapt to modern times, when women don't take a backseat to their husbands. I don't know why this mentality has been so pervasive, although I wish I did. As a Latina, I still see it represented everywhere in my community.  


Image via iStock.

By now, it's fairly well-acknowledged among forward-thinking people that the machista mentality undermines everything women have worked for when it comes to gender equality.

But despite decades of work, the archetype of this male sentiment hasn't fully disappeared, a la Donald Trump and many prominent men in Latino and American culture. It's a big problem.

That's why the hashtag #EsMachismo (which means "It's machista" in Spanish) started trending on Twitter on Oct. 10, 2016.

It was sparked by this tweet by Liz Cardosa from Guatemala (who posts as "Analista Feminista," which cleverly translates into "Feminist Analyst"). The tweet, written in Spanish, reads: "#ItsMachista — the idea that female bodies are for the pleasure of the male gaze."

Other people, both men and women, quickly chimed in using this simple hashtag, too.

The purpose of the hashtag was to spark a discussion so people could vent about what the machismo mentality meant to them and why they wish it would change. I've translated 21 of them from Spanish to English below:

1. @nictechula: "#ItsMachismo to assume that women can't work together in harmony."

2. @marciluu: "#ItsMachismo that there are more men than women in government."

3. @carvasar: "#ItsMachismo to deny an education for little girls in favor of their male siblings. That violates their human rights."

4. @nictechula: "#ItsMachismo to think that sexual harassment on the street is acceptable conduct."

5. @elplacer_de_ser: "#ItsMachismo to assume that every woman dreams of being a mother and a housewife."

6. @carvasar: "#ItsMachismo to think that a woman's place is in the home. And it should be a crime to force her to do that."

7. @avilarenata: "#ItsMachismo to not hire young women because you consider their right to bear children a burden."

8. @kmolinae: "#ItsMachismo to judge a woman for enjoying her sexuality."

9. @galvez_ingridj: "#ItsMachismo when you're told how to act, what to say, where to go and what you should do when you're in a relationship."

10. @JohnDavilM: "#ItsMachismo to deny access to sexual education, reproductive health and access to free contraceptives."

Image via iStock.

11. @WRadioguate: "#ItsMachismo — From childhood on, moms teach sisters that they should tend to their brothers. That's how machismo starts."

12. @LizCardosa: "#ItsMachismo for a man to feel the right to 'correct' a woman."

13. @Nora_PerezM: "#ItsMachismo to say that women victimize themselves over everything."

14. @Ninitarios: "#ItsMachismo to refuse to wear a condom when you are sleeping with more than one person at a time."

15. @Landsmoder: "#ItsMachismo when women are called unbearable or crazy when they get their period. The label of being 'hysterical' is misogynist and violent."

16. @carvasar: "#ItsMachismo, as well, to assume that the entire financial obligation of the home falls exclusively on the man."

17. @Anayancy: "#ItsMachismo — The pink ribbon. To have to pay more for thousands of products just because they're 'for women.'"

18. @GerardoHerro: "#ItsMachismo that men and women perpetuate the idea that men shouldn't cry."

19. @AliciaAlvarezGI: "#ItsMachismo for motherhood to be imposed upon you. If someone doesn't want to have kids, so what?"

20. @Nora_PerezM: "#ItsMachismo to expect for him to pay for the check."

21. @Polaris_GT: #ItsMachista to classify a woman with either Ms./Mrs. based on either her sexuality/motherhood/marriage status referring to her availability."

Image via iStock.

A women should have as much say and as much power as a man. No more, no less.

The ideas of machista has hit even closer to home recently as we've heard Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump's now-infamous "Access Hollywood" bombshell tape. It was machismo behavior to the umpteenth degree — off the charts to the point where I feel even a machista would be offended. And let me tell you: The idea that Trump's words and the actions he boasted about are even offensive to a machista says a lot.

But as a new generation comes of age, young Latino people are standing up against toxic traditions, and things are starting to change.

This makes me proud, and these tweets from young Latinos are proof that someday, we'll have the power to teach our children about what the machismo mentality used to be.

If we stand up against unhelpful traditions and we adapt, we might be able to talk about machista and toxic masculinity much like we talk about how women were once not able to vote or hold office: things of the past.

Leah Menzies/TikTok

Leah Menzies had no idea her deceased mother was her boyfriend's kindergarten teacher.

When you start dating the love of your life, you want to share it with the people closest to you. Sadly, 18-year-old Leah Menzies couldn't do that. Her mother died when she was 7, so she would never have the chance to meet the young woman's boyfriend, Thomas McLeodd. But by a twist of fate, it turns out Thomas had already met Leah's mom when he was just 3 years old. Leah's mom was Thomas' kindergarten teacher.

The couple, who have been dating for seven months, made this realization during a visit to McCleodd's house. When Menzies went to meet his family for the first time, his mom (in true mom fashion) insisted on showing her a picture of him making a goofy face. When they brought out the picture, McLeodd recognized the face of his teacher as that of his girlfriend's mother.

Menzies posted about the realization moment on TikTok. "Me thinking my mum (who died when I was 7) will never meet my future boyfriend," she wrote on the video. The video shows her and McLeodd together, then flashes to the kindergarten class picture.

“He opens this album and then suddenly, he’s like, ‘Oh my God. Oh my God — over and over again,” Menzies told TODAY. “I couldn’t figure out why he was being so dramatic.”

Obviously, Menzies is taking great comfort in knowing that even though her mother is no longer here, they can still maintain a connection. I know how important it was for me to have my mom accept my partner, and there would definitely be something missing if she wasn't here to share in my joy. It's also really incredible to know that Menzies' mother had a hand in making McLeodd the person he is today, even if it was only a small part.

@speccylee

Found out through this photo in his photo album. A moment straight out of a movie 🥲

♬ iris - 🫶

“It’s incredible that that she knew him," Menzies said. "What gets me is that she was standing with my future boyfriend and she had no idea.”

Since he was only 3, McLeodd has no actual memory of Menzies' mother. But his own mother remembers her as “kind and really gentle.”

The TikTok has understandably gone viral and the comments are so sweet and positive.

"No the chills I got omggg."

"This is the cutest thing I have watched."

"It’s as if she remembered some significance about him and sent him to you. Love fate 😍✨"

In the caption of the video, she said that discovering the connection between her boyfriend and her mom was "straight out of a movie." And if you're into romantic comedies, you're definitely nodding along right now.

Menzies and McLeodd made a follow-up TikTok to address everyone's positive response to their initial video and it's just as sweet. The young couple sits together and addresses some of the questions they noticed pop up. People were confused that they kept saying McLeodd was in kindergarten but only 3 years old when he was in Menzies' mother's class. The couple is Australian and Menzies explained that it's the equivalent of American preschool.

They also clarified that although they went to high school together and kind of knew of the other's existence, they didn't really get to know each other until they started dating seven months ago. So no, they truly had no idea that her mother was his teacher. Menzies revealed that she "didn't actually know that my mum taught at kindergarten."

"I just knew she was a teacher," she explained.

She made him act out his reaction to seeing the photo, saying he was "speechless," and when she looked at the photo she started crying. McLeodd recognized her mother because of the pictures Menzies keeps in her room. Cue the "awws," because this is so cute, I'm kvelling.

A simple solution for all ages, really.

School should feel like a safe space. But after the tragic news of yet another mass shooting, many children are scared to death. As a parent or a teacher, it can be an arduous task helping young minds to unpack such unthinkable monstrosities. Especially when, in all honesty, the adults are also terrified.

Katelyn Campbell, a clinical psychologist in South Carolina, worked with elementary school children in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook shooting. She recently shared a simple idea that helped then, in hopes that it might help now.

The psychologist tweeted, “We had our kids draw pictures of scenery that made them feel calm—we then hung them up around the school—to make the ‘other kids who were scared’ have something calm to look at.”



“Kids, like adults, want to feel helpful when they feel helpless,” she continued, saying that drawing gave them something useful to do.

Keep Reading Show less

Alberto Cartuccia Cingolani wows audiences with his amazing musical talents.

Mozart was known for his musical talent at a young age, playing the harpsichord at age 4 and writing original compositions at age 5. So perhaps it's fitting that a video of 5-year-old piano prodigy Alberto Cartuccia Cingolani playing Mozart has gone viral as people marvel at his musical abilities.

Alberto's legs can't even reach the pedals, but that doesn't stop his little hands from flying expertly over the keys as incredible music pours out of the piano at the 10th International Musical Competition "Città di Penne" in Italy. Even if you've seen young musicians play impressively, it's hard not to have your jaw drop at this one. Sometimes a kid comes along who just clearly has a gift.

Of course, that gift has been helped along by two professional musician parents. But no amount of teaching can create an ability like this.

Keep Reading Show less