Paisa Controversy


David Valencia, Discoverers Staff Writer

According to Intriper, “Medellín was officially founded on March 2, 1616. But it was not always named that way, the first name the city received was San Lorenzo de Aburrá.”

Medellin is the house of one of the most famous cultures in Colombia and its Paisa culture but in every culture, there is a dark side and I believe that pride and regionalism are closing the doors to a more open culture.

Pride and regionalism is bad for Paisa culture we are so self-centered that we have a hard time opening up to other cultures and this closes Medellin to only their citizens, but if we opened up to other cultures we could learn from them and expand.

Paisas have a lot of regionalism and many of them acknowledge that but this can bring many consequences because it doesn’t allow Paisas to interact with the rest of the world. In such an international world that we live in today, how can somebody be so close-minded? “The negative thing is that it is really close minded and Paisas are really regionalists,” Jorge Vazquez, high school academic support coordinator, said. Vazquez was born in Bogota and has seen the “rolo” culture and the Paisa culture and he has said that the biggest difference between them is the lack of internationality amongst the Paisas. The school itself has trouble with a scarcity of international students.Paisas aren’t only closing to the rest of the world, but the rest of Colombia too and this affects politically because we only live in this small bubble and the rest of Colombia is non-existent.

Pride can be something good as it can be something bad but when it comes to a cultural pride it doesn’t matter which way you see it it’s wrong because it can be discriminatory. “Paisa culture is a little closed minded we cannot see beyond the edge of the mountain, and we are really protective of each other we want to keep it concentrated,” Gregorio Correa, 11th-grade student, said. Medellin is located in the middle of huge mountains cutting us off the rest of Colombia but we must learn to work with our neighbors. My dad imports tires from Germany and the US, to sell them he has to promote the tires as great German and American tires, but his pride got in the way of that and believed that only Paisa things are good then his work would not endure. Good exterior relationships are really important for businesses and most Paisas lack of this as they sometimes can be untrustable of other cultures almost in a racist way.

The Columbus School is notoriously known as one of the best and most expensive schools in Medellin. The Paisa pride and regionalism can be seen in the walls of the school. 86% of the TCS students in 11th grade are native “Paisas,” and 96.5% of 11th graders have lived in Medellin most of their lives. Where are all those outsiders that study in the international school of TCS? Paisas are known for not liking outsiders so it might be a reason why TCS has a hard time enrolling them. Paisas have always had that concept of them being better than the rest of the country just like Bogota once was in 1980 to 2000.

It can be said that great cities can’t be formed all alone they have to have connections with the exterior to be so developed. In 2013 Medellin was awarded the price of the most innovative city in the world. It can be said that it’s really hard to gain this award without exterior connections.

Paisas have to change their mindset of being extremely regionalists and having a lot of pride, we have to learn to work with other people outside Medellin and see over the mountains that hide us from the rest of the world.