Eva Longoria has been urging fans to register and vote in the upcoming elections of the United States in November.
In the latest episode of the Dissenters podcast, the actress urged people to stick up for themselves through voting. She said she is not speaking for women or Latinos but telling people to speak up for themselves.
Eva explained that the best way to do that is to vote. She said the only time everybody is equal, be it the rich or the poor, is in the voting booth. The actress added that viewing voting as an equalizer is what inspired her to encourage people. She said it made her dedicate time to educate people on their right to vote and the power that came with it.
Eva said, ‘That is literally what inspired me to dedicate so much time to this was realizing the power that each person has regardless of who they are.’ She said her internal struggle with identity is what led her to act on the causes that mean something to her. Her activist mentality has been present since she was a child.
‘I kind of sit right in the middle. People go you’re half and half. And I was like, no, I’m 100% Mexican and 100% American at the same time,’ said Longoria. She explains that all of this led to her political activism. The actress added, ‘That’s what really made me turn the corner because I was a Mexican American and I just straddle that hyphen.’
‘Either You’re This Or You’re That’
Eva said a lot of Latinos have difficulty navigating their identity in the United States. It is mostly because of the internal conflict that comes with assimilating and still holding onto one’s own culture. She said we have trouble because we want to be fully accepted. But she explains we want to hold onto our language, our religion, our traditions, our music, our food.
Eva revealed that she did not know a lot of things, a lot of struggles within her community. This led to her pursuing Masters in Chicano Studies. She explained that she loves learning things that she does not know about but notes that this was personal. ‘Because I said, I should know this. I need to know this. And I had such a hunger to learn at that moment. But let me tell you, if you want something done, ask a busy woman to do it, then, you know, it’s gonna get done right,’ said Longoria.
In 2019, it was announced that Eva would be directing the highly anticipated biopic Flamin’ Hot. It is about the life of Richard Montañez who invented Hot Cheetos. Eva said these stories need to be told and say she did not know Hot Cheetos was made by a Mexican. She explained that being a Latina and a director, it is important that she gets behind the camera and becomes the storyteller.
Eva said, ‘Everybody wanted to direct this story. And I was really happy that Searchlight was committed to having a Latino director. Because they were like, we need somebody from the community that knows this community.’
The actress goes on saying people create barriers to activism. She continues, ‘And they’ll say, I don’t really know anything about climate change or immigration, or I don’t have time. But why not learn it?’
She also explained how involving women is a vital stepping stone for creating sustainable and effective change. Eva said, ‘I chose women because if you help a woman, she helps her family, if you help a family, you change communities, you change communities, you change a nation.’