Hispanic American Diversity Essay

1251 words - 6 pages

Hispanic And American Diversity
Hispanic American Diversity

ETH 125

Hispanic American Diversity

This is a brief summary of the linguistic, political, social, economic, religious and family status of the Mexican American, Puerto Rican American, Cuban American, Central and South American ethnic groups.

Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Central and South Americans all have very much in common, yet remain separate ethnic groups and descended from various ancestors. Many come to the United States for political asylum. Others were looking to escape poor social or economic conditions. In 2006, the United States Census Bureau estimated that more than 44 million people or 14.3% of the ...view middle of the document...

Puerto Rican Americans

The majority of Puerto Ricans are Roman Catholics, mixed with various denominations of Protestant faiths. Puerto Ricans speak Castilian Spanish. English is taught in most elementary schools, but Spanish remains the primary language in Puerto Rico. Puerto Rico is a territory of the United States, with its own constitution, legislature, and governor, subject to the executive authority of the United States; due to this commonwealth status, all Puerto Ricans are American citizens, as such, they are considered migrants versus immigrants. In the political arena, there is much debate whether Puerto Rico should maintain the commonwealth relationship with the United States, advocate for full United States statehood, or fight for complete independence of the United States. Puerto Rican American assimilation has been both successful and distraught with problems. Twenty-five percent of Puerto Ricans living in the United States and 55% of Puerto Ricans living in Puerto Rico are still experiencing serious problems, and though American citizenship presumably carries many advantages, Puerto Ricans continue to struggle with problems such as drug-use, crime, lack of educational opportunities, and the breakdown of the familial structure. (Green, n.d.)

Cuban Americans
The Cubans exiled from the Caribbean Island after the 1959 revolution changed Miami, Florida into what many have deemed the capital of Latin America. During the Cold War many political refugees sought asylum in the United States where they happily accepted the benefits offered here. The Cuban Americans significantly changed many things in Miami, including reversing the typical progression of assuming American culture and societal assimilation. Instead of replacing Spanish with English and assimilating American cultures, they brought about what has been termed "reverse acculturation", meaning Miami residents had to become accustomed to the Cuban economical impact and political domination. However, unlike the Cuban immigrants, Haitian immigrants, derogatively referred to as "the boat people," faced insurmountable racism and alienation for their entry into the United States. Haitian immigrants changed the typical assimilation by concealing their heritage and adapting the dress and attitudes of the African American inner city youths. (Cato, n.d.)

Central/South Americans
Within the United States, different ethic groups tend to gravitate toward various geographic centers. Central Americans tend to migrate toward the western United States with the Mexican Americans, while South Americans tend to live on the eastern United States with Puerto Ricans and Cuban Americans. Cuban Americans and South and Central Americans have the highest college graduation rates of Hispanic American groups at 19 and 16%, respectively. As expected, this results in the lowest poverty rates among Hispanic Americans.

Mexican Americans, Puerto Rican Americans, Cuban Americans, and Dominican...

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