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Hispanic American Diversity

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Hispanic American Diversity

Brandon Gentry

ETH/125

6/20/10

Instructor: Demetrick Pennie

Hispanic American Diversity

The label Hispanic combines a diverse population which shares a common language heritage but otherwise has many significant differences. Another Hispanic commonality is the fact that they defined as a person of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Dominican, Central or South American, or other Spanish race, regardless of origin (Wikipedia, 2010). Until recently the language barrier in an assimilation-oriented society has made it difficult for Spanish speaking to succeed in school. The largest Hispanic groups in the United States consist of Mexican, Puerto Rican and Cubans.

Puerto Ricans are, from a political stand point, American citizens due to the common wealth shared with Puerto Rico. This Hispanic group also does not have to pay Federal taxes, only taxes to the common wealth government, they are also able to vote and send at least one nonvoting representative to the United States Congress. Spanish and English are the official languages of the Puerto Rican group, with English being taught as a second language beginning in elementary school all the way thru university (Wikipedia, 2010).

The Roman Catholic religion is the primary religion amongst the Puerto Rican community followed by Protestants. This Hispanic group also has a large number of other religions as well. Puerto Ricans have a very strong family life and are very family oriented. They have very close knit families with the children living at home until they get married. In 1990, 41 percent of Puerto Rican children lived in poverty due to parents having problems getting work to support their families. Employers do require a need for less skilled workers. Puerto Ricans are usually classified as poor and part of the urban underclass in the United States.

Cuban Americans have established a slightly higher knowledge of the English language with 40 percent of Cuban Americans speaking English with Puerto Ricans following close behind. Cuban Americans are very interested in politics in the United States. Cuban Americans currently occupy at total of six positions in the United States Congress, two United States Senators, and four seats in the United States House of Representatives. Cuban Americans are Citizens of the United States just like Puerto Ricans. Other than the conflict between Cuba and America over flexible policies that involve trades, Cuban Americans are doing very well compared to other Hispanic groups (Wikipedia, 2010).

Most Cuban Americans are Roman Catholics with a few other religions like protestant and a small number of Jewish and a religion called Santeria which is a mix of African and Catholic religion. Cuban Americans have the highest household income among all other Hispanic groups; they also have about twice the average amount of college education as all other Hispanic groups (Wikipedia, 2010). As with all other Hispanic groups family ties are very close.

Mexican Americans speak mostly Spanish with 23 percent of them speaking English. As with all other Hispanic groups Mexican Americans are Roman Catholics and are very religious with religion being acknowledged in all aspects of their daily lives. Mexican Americans have many hurdles when it comes to politics. From a political point of view Mexican Americans make up the largest amount of the Hispanic population in the United States. Mexican Americans are, in a political stand point, the same common ground as central and South Americans. From a social stand point Mexican Americans are low class and well under the poverty line. In 1990, 32 percent of Mexican American children lived in poverty due to 8.1 percent of Mexican Americans being unemployed (United States Census Bureau, 2004). As with all other Hispanic groups Mexican Americans are all very tight close knit families with the parents keeping the children at home until marriage.

Central and Southern Hispanic groups, like the more recent Salvadoran and Dominican immigrants, speak their native language which is Spanish. Hispanic groups from Central and South America are mostly illegal immigrants

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