Gay Latino man escapes life as drug dealer

Tave lived with the stigma of being a gay Latino man – one with a criminal past, at that

Francisco Dominguez, Reporter

“I am one of a kind,” Tave said.

Tave immigrated to the United States 27-years-ago from Chihuahua, Mexico. But why is he “one of a kind?”

Tave is a man who has had to overcome many obstacles to change his life. One of those obstacles is being a gay Latino man.

The Latino community is one of the most conservative when it comes to gay issues. Most Latinos simply do not accept the fact that a person is gay.

“For Latinos it’s a little bit harder to understand because of our customs and traditions,” Tave said.

Like most gay people, Tave has been bullied and called offensive names and. Tave tries not to let that get to him.

“Being gay is being me,” Tave said.

Being gay has just been one of the struggles that Tave has had to deal with. The other is drugs. Not consuming them like many would think, but selling them.

Tave is a former drug dealer. For eight years of his life, Tave was in the business of selling cocaine. It is a business that he knew was dangerous, but decided to engage in it because of greed.

“It was ambition. It was wanting to have more,” Tave said.

Being a drug dealer, although dangerous, is very financially rewarding.

Tave made about $4,000 a week. That translates to over $200,000 a year. With that kind of money anyone might be tempted to go into that kind of business.

Tave knew that what he was doing was wrong.

“You see all these people destroying their lives,” Tave said.

What Tave was doing was damaging the lives of many people, but he believes that the people who bought drugs from him came on their own. Tave never forced anyone to buy the cocaine.

There is as much danger as there is power in the drug world. There is no certainty in the drug business.  A drug dealer can be staying a five star hotel eating caviar, then all of a sudden be in a jail cell or dead. It is exactly those dangerous uncertainty that made Tave walk away.

To many people, Tave was a bad person, but to others he’s their role model. One of those people is his little sister.

Tave’s parents were divorced, in a very early stage in his sisters’ life, which resulted in him becoming a father to his sister.

Ever since she was a little girl, Tave has raised his little sister. He cared for her and loved her unconditionally.

“He’s been my dad…He’s taught me how to work, to respect and to have values,” she said.

Tave has not only influenced the lives of his family, but he has also influenced the lives of his friends.

One of those is Francisca. She has known Tave for over a decade now. To her, Tave is an amazing person.

“He’s a beautiful person that I want to have by my side… He’s taught me to fight for what I want and to value what I have,” Francisca said.

Tave is no longer a drug dealer. He is now is businessman and singer. After he stopped selling drugs he became a successful rancher in Mexico. He stills resides in Arizona, which is where he sings. Every week he sings at parties, gay clubs or bars.

Tave has made a lot of mistakes in his life. He has helped in destroying the lives of many, but even with all that he would not change a thing.  It is because of the past that Tave is who he is now.

“I’m one of a kind because of how I am. I always try to speak with the truth and smile at the world”