Influences on Belizean Youths As we the year passes by it is less common to see any youth showing how proud they are of their culture by dressing and practicing the aspects that their culture represents. It is more common to see the influences that other countries have brought into our country and which have caused a cultural erasure especially in the lives of us the young one. However, society tends to see these changes and take in mind as it doesn’t affect our origins and from where we initiated.
Presently today it is very rare to see any youth dressing according to their culture, listening to cultural music and eating cultural food that once used to be the delicacy and cuisine of Belize. For the way of dressing of the youths in Belize, there is more skinny jeans and miniskirts than garifuna headbands and maya mipils. The clothing used here in our country has been influenced by the clothing weared in the United States or other foreign countries. It is visible anywhere because the only ones wearing cultural dressings are the elderly who live in villages but rarely anyone living in towns and in the city.
At school you can see that every youth will be dressing fashion according to other societies of the foreign. Now a day’s young girls and boys only speak about Emporio Armani and E- hardy. At stores you can see that there are only important clothing brands on sale of which the designers are foreign and very famous. Music plays an important role for a young adult because that is the way they identify themselves. In this generation most youngsters will listen to hip-hop, rap, regeaton, rock, reage, etc. but for sure never any Rancheras. The closest cultural music found in our country is Punta.
Closest I say because today Punta has been mixed with foreign music in order to form Punta rock. The present artists in our country would be Supa-G, Gilhary 7 and Youth Connection Band, which all of them base their music in Punta. Also the influence of music can be seen in our same Belizean arists. Those who participate in Duets and K-TV Latino would only perform foreign songs and never any cultural presentation. It is sadly that our most famous artist, Andy Palacio, who stuck to his culture and sang in Garifuna his Punta songs, has passed away. Will there be any other who would want to follow Andy’s example?
Even the food here in Belize has changed as the years passes by. The influences in Belizean diets comes from England, the US and Mexico especially for the youths. At school you can see that students prefer to buy food that is not Belizean such as enchiladas and quesadillas. The most common Belizean cousin that has not lost popularity in our country is the rice and beans although some still prefer Chinese burger or fry chicken. It is true that foreign cousins have a delicious flavor and are very appetizing but so is the food prepared that once our elderly used to cook for us, being 100% Belizean.
Belize is a very beautiful home land for us Belizeans and we should appreciate such heritage given to us by our ethnic groups. It is very clear that our culture is being left behind and that the influences of other countries are impacting our youths. The way they dress, the music they listen to and the food they eat all can be seen that there is foreign influence. Belizean youth must not forget that they form part of an ethnic group and that they represent the future of Belize so if they forget their origins so will Belizean history.