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I am basically on lockdown from now until the NAHREP and L’ATTITUDE conference. This year we have a concert with Farruko and Juanes, a gala with Lin-Manuel Miranda, a basketball game with Manu Ginóbili, and our usual cadre of CEOs, VCs, entrepreneurs, and celebrities. I am especially excited about the opportunity to interview President Barack Obama, who will be my third presidential interview, and I am also very excited to be working with Sara Rodriguez to help her write and produce her keynote, A 21st Century Latina. The list of prominent participants at L’ATTITUDE is too long to list. With a lot of work still to be done, I don’t have time to write my usual blog this week. The one downside this year has been that I am dealing with an unusually high number of crabs in the bucket syndrome. You know the story. An old crabber has three buckets of live freshly caught crabs. Two of them have a cover on them to prevent the crabs from climbing out and the other has no cover on it whatsoever. A neighboring fisherman asks the old man why he doesn’t have a cover on the third bucket, and the crabber says, “those are Mexican crabs; when one crab tries to climb out, the others pull him down”. Ouch!
I’m not one to complain, and I’ve always hated that folktale. While there was a time when analogies to the crab story were pretty common, I feel things are changing for the better. Latinos overall are doing better at collaborating and supporting each other. NAHREP is an amazing example of this. But the past few weeks have reminded me we still have a way to go. Putting on a big convention with sponsors, speakers, celebrities, and politicians requires you to deal with a lot of egos. It goes with the territory, but this year has been tough. I had to deal with more crap than I’ve had to deal with in a long time, and all I can say is the drama didn’t come from celebrities or speakers, it came from the people I thought would be the most supportive. It came from our friends.
We need to do better. Elevating our community is no small task. A while back, I wrote a blog entitled “Rule #1, Thou shall not publicly criticize other Latinos”. Not everyone loved that title, but I was making a point about some of the fundamental things that are required for us to make real progress forward as a community. It starts with having each other’s back. See you at L’ATTITUDE!