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Cruz Bay
Monday, April 15, 2024


To the Source:
I was reading Carmelo Rivera's article (See Berating won't bring diversity to news media) in the Source, and I was both encouraged and disturbed. I am a recent college graduate in communications, and I know how hard it is to find a job. I find it encouraging that he is offering solutions that might actually work. I would love to help in anyway that I can. I for one would love to be a journalist in the Virgin Islands and have the opportunity for speak with and help my people speak out.
Although the non-minority presence in the Virgin Islands continues to stimulate the economic growth of the islands, it seems to have suppressed the voice of the people. This is done neither intentionally nor with any malice; it is just the same old cliché, "money talks." I feel the need for the Virgin Islands to bring its broadcasting skills up to the level and the voice of the people once again to be heard.
I felt kind of strange hearing Mr. Rivera's cry for Hispanics to be more involved. Please do not get me wrong, but I realized his article took a spin from local culture to more Hispanic encouragement. Hispanics are not the local culture of the Virgin Islands in the traditional sense of the word "local." Neither are the non-minority people who now inhabit the V.I. Again, Mr. Rivera, should not take this the wrong way; I am trying to be clear without insulting or speaking of any type of segregation. I guess my feelings come from the fact that I live in Florida with a communications degree that I cannot find value in, because the market is looking for Hispanic or Caucasian journalists. I see his credentials and that he has made an impact and did not let "no" stop him, which is excellent and an inspiration.
I do agree with him in saying that we need to encourage more minorities to go into the communication/broadcasting field. We need to encourage everyone — blacks, Hispanics, Asians and whomever else we find that make up our new "local color" — to find their voices as individuals and as one for that chance to be heard. They also need to know that the work is hard and still not equal.
I never thought of moving back to the Virgin Islands, because there are no jobs for my people. It is very hard to go home and not feel welcome. If it will correct the need for fair reporting , Federal Communications Commission standards and diversity in the broadcast environment, let's come up with a plan of action, and I will encourage others to do so as well. My question to Mr. Rivera is: When we get there, what will we do?
Jana Dalmida
Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

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