Dealing with a dual existence

ABC News’ Alex Perez speaks with singer Amara La Negra on the complexities of Afro-Latina identity.
6:14 | 07/09/20

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Transcript for Dealing with a dual existence
And George Floyd protests have certainly sparked some sort of conversations about race and identity for Mary many American Latino as it's been. A wake up call of sorts Afro Latinos have been living and at times typical dual existence of being both black and Latino in America Alex Perez has the story. She's a singer Helen Arnold now. Does that make. And say. Reality show's star yeah he. And rapper. She's known for embracing her and her own blackness. But despite all her success and accomplishments there's one battle a modern Ireland native has always had to fight defending her Afro left in black Nick's cell. Really black imprisoned Astra is is everywhere. Having to defend yourself like that all the time he why do you think it's so hard for. People. And even know and art and were acquitted he. And don't speak English for an African American is really aren't that bird and single possible and it. In a nation that likes to put people in a box of black Latino won eighteen Asian. Ahmad born and Deanna identity synovus on those two Dominican parents. Says she's always having to explain herself. To African Americans who have publicly questioned her blackness like on The Breakfast Club radio show what are you. Gregory's wise and even to other Latinos including some in her home state of Florida who she says Russian washer who participated in a Miami. Black lives matter mark. All. The speed or you're black and big indemnity you aren't. The eighth I'm. You'll see a lot of you know negative things slower than I get it understand. How important it is not does is it assumed that anything. In the wake of the George Floyd murder as protest spread across the country there's also a growing spotlight illuminated the diversity of blackness in America. It's a lesson educator Jennifer white says she's been teaching for years. The Spanish teacher is the only Latina and only teacher in color at the Donahoe school in Anniston Alabama. In the rules south she makes it appointed to educate her students about Afro lack in this. Need to be true to myself and I need to be it but. Make sure that I know what an actor and Spanish teacher and teaching culture I think as a Spanish teacher were very important people because or more language teachers because we're the ones to teach culture where the one that bring up these uncomfortable conversations. About race and history took as we do history so exciting week we bring up these are comfortable conversation about race color is on. Bet there are no get out I dean at USC who focuses on race and policy believes America's historically. Poor treatment of African Americans. Created a massive divide among Latino immigrants even those who are black. When many Latin American. Country. Obviously Tennessee tried to distance themselves but the and that's true even among people who you don't typically from and blah. You'd think about American base among like it. Makes luggage from the reds are always clearly lie. Barry dollar in debt and other Democrats. Didn't quite a minute and as this war set up now from. Into the complexities in America the many countries Latino families can originate from and so isn't popular committee that could identify more nationality and you'll say I'm from Aurora from Adam. You know it doesn't need a whole. Only means some second third generate girl's who did that America. Understand the wheel racing them or were. And so they claim about white entity. In that I didn't need this equipment. In the US the most is strictly think African American when they hear black but according to pew researcher during the colonial period. About fifteen times as many slaves were taken to Latin America then to the United States. Many of those families would eventually immigrated to America bringing their blackness sand Latin American traditions with them. One study found a quarter of all Latinos in the US a self identify as Afro Latino Afro Caribbean. Or of African descent with roots in Latin America. Has protesters have filled the streets across the country recently demanding changes to systemic problems. It's become clear those demonstrators are a diverse group. One indicator says no get out of how the concept of race in America is evolving. It's not scatter. Its looted in politics now biology. Once we see it that way we understand. How and why it's used its use to rationalize. It's use to divide people and that's who we could reject we have to reject recent. And the ways in which usually people are justified discrimination. Once we see it that way we can celebrate our identity celebrate our culture and that Dewey in ways that others. Add and add and perpetuate racial. Rejecting racism and celebrating her Afro Latina beauty is why a martyr says she'll continue to speak up. She often turns to one of her role models screwing up. The late Cuban icon and queen of so's son. So yeah coops. Clutter up. See what the policy turns it and not let me I struggle for identity that she hopes of one day in the future of America. Face. Coming on we won't yeah. Alex Perez ABC news Chicago.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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