Time magazine "Yo Decido" issue gets it right and wrong

Time magazine "Yo Decido" issue gets it right and wrong

The latest issue of Time magazine has the first Spanish-language headline in the publication’s history – “Yo decido” or “I decide.” It is followed by, “Why Latinos will pick the next president.”

The focus of the cover story is on the potential impact of the Latino vote in the upcoming presidential election. Republicans are alienating Latinos with their anti-immigrant rhetoric. And President Obama hasn’t lived up to his promise for immigration reform or the DREAM Act.

It’s a solid piece of reporting and there also is a nice essay by Jorge Ramos, news anchor for Univision News. Although these issues aren’t new to Latinos themselves it is important that a mainstream publication tackle this issue.

The cover also has 20 portraits of diverse Latino voters. There is just one problem.

One of those depicted on the cover is not Latino. Michael Schennum, featured on the top row behind the letter “M” is actually of Chinese, Irish and Norwegian heritage, according to The OC Weekly.

Schennum, who is a staff photographer for The Arizona Republic, wrote on his Facebook page, “They never told me what it was for or [asked] if I was Latino.”

A Time spokesperson emailed The OC Weekly a response about the cover.

“Over the course of three days TIME photographed 151 people for the current cover. We took steps to ensure that everyone self-identified as Latino, that they are registered voters and that they would be willing to answer our questions. If there was a misunderstanding with one of our subjects, we apologize.”

The photojournalist who took the pictures, Marco Grob, obviously made a mistake.

It’s strange too that the man he mistakenly photographed is a photojournalist. You think he would have asked why he was taking his photo.

It is embarrassing for Time especially when the story highlights the diversity of the Latino vote.

Latinos come in all colors – white, black and brown. Some have indigenous, European, African and even Asian ancestry. That is why many people use the term mestizo, to identify that we are mixed.

We don’t all look alike. Time should’ve been more careful that everyone photographed for this cover story actually is Latino.


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  • Big deal, maybe he's just "Latino" at heart.

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