The Hispanics form the largest of the minority groups in America. Hispanic presence in USA started in the year 1848. By the twentieth century, their number had outgrown as a result of their legal or illegal immigration from their homelands such as Cuba and Mexico. Statistics show that in the year 2001, the number had grown into 35 million Hispanics. They started settling in Southern America; areas that were colonized by Spain like California and also Texas. Today Hispanics are widely spread in the whole nation. Most of the Hispanics are bilingual speaking both fluent English and Spanish (Duany, 2010).
This essay seeks to explore through the tough life of the Hispanics in America. Did the Hispanics Colonize or migrate to the United States of America? If the term “Hispanics” is used to refer to the settlers from Spain, then it is correct to state that they colonized America. The Spanish colonization lasted from 1500’s to 1800’s (HispanicAmerican, 2006). America was colonized by Europeans and suffered greatly under the hands of their colonizers, Hispanics being among them. The massacres and enslavement of America by the Spanish people left the Americana terribly bruised.
Spain then claimed most of the American continent. As a Result of Colonization, the Hispanics found themselves in America (Aske, nd). Majority of the Hispanics however immigrated to the US from South American states in the 19th century in large numbers (Oppapers, 2010). They dispossessed the Mexicans of their land either legally or illegally and then spread to other parts of the US. Duany (2010) says that, “the pioneers set the pace for the massive migration from Latin America to the United States of America during the twentieth century. Prejudice, segregation and racism against the Hispanics The Hispanics have greatly suffered under the hands of the Americans in terms of prejudice (Duany, 2010). Their being in a ‘foreign’ country saw them being prejudiced and segregated in addition to facing racism because of their background (Oppapers, 2010). Hispanics are hated with passion and it has been reported in the FBI that many animosities have been done on them (Administrator Victory Boulevard Corporation, 2008).
The Hispanics are referred to as foreign people, non-white and Catholics by the Anglo-Saxon, white and protestant American writers. The Americans believe that they are racially superior to the Hispanics. The Hispanic-Mexicans were labeled as mongrel breed, a rather abusive term, and were not allowed to enter American neighborhoods (Duany, 2010). Discrimination against the Hispanics It is believed that Hispanic discrimination resulted in the congressional debate that covered illegal immigration. Their illegal immigration marred with their colonizing America makes them objects of discrimination.
This, according to a survey carried out by Pew Hispanic Center in 2006, could have resulted to the black days of Hispanic discrimination. Among those who responded to the survey, 54% admitted to facing discrimination. Majority could never be wrong and this proofs that Hispanic discrimination is evident (Administrator Victory Boulevard Corporation, 2008). The Americans, those who speak English regard the Hispanics as a people whose social background, ancestry and language are different. This perception leads to high level discrimination in all the spheres of life (Hispanic American, 2006).
According to Oppapers (2010) in the article, Hispanic groups and discrimination, a high percentage of the Hispanics; as high as “fifteen percent said they have been addressed with racial slur at work place. Roughly one-in-four feel they are paid less and have fewer career advancement opportunities compared to their Causian counterparts. ” Also in the labor market, Hispanic workers are underrepresented such that they are given low status jobs like repair workers which pay them less (Duany, 2010).
At the institutional level, reports show that there are gaps in the educational sector. There is a high rate of drop outs and this is found out to be created by failure to get equal educational opportunities compared to the rest in schools and the society in general (Administrator Victory Boulevard Corporation, 2008). There was also discrimination in legal rights of property, in courts and voting. There were always legal obstacles for the Hispanics (Duany, 2010). They were discriminated even by law enforcers, like Texas Rangers.
Even in courts, longer sentences have been pronounced for a similar crime with a “white. ” The Islanders cannot vote for the president or congressional delegates (Duany, 2010). A case was reported in the media of USDA an agency of the government, giving ‘white’ farmers loans and failing to give the same to the Hispanic farmers. They were either not given the grants or if so, they were delayed showing that discrimination is even in the agricultural institutions (Administrator Victory Boulevard Corporation, 2008). Culture of the Hispanics
The Hispanics have remained close together because of their cultural bonds evidenced by language and religion. They speak Spanish and many of them are of the Roman Catholic religion. They also spread their language and religion, through the actions of the missionaries, to the areas that they colonized (Hispanic American, 2006). The Hispanics have made a great contribution towards the American culture. Their cuisine as well as their music has made a great impact in the American culture. Though they identify themselves with America, they still hold some of their cultural identity (Duany, 2010).
Conclusion Though they make 15% of the US population, Hispanic discrimination is real; it is neither a story nor propaganda (Administrator Victory Boulevard Corporation, 2008). Despite the suffering of the Hispanics, they have also excelled in education, science, business, entertainment, politics, and sports and their famous names are all over the US (Hispanic American, 2006). They have not only made a major contribution to their nation but they have also made it proud through their achievements.