Racial Discrimination among Latinos in America
Racialization involves lessening ancient, linguistic, and cultural alterations among people of the same area. The racialization of Latinos and Latin Americans in the United States can be traced from the 15th century. Latinos were considered as an inferior ethnic group or race by the whites. Clara Rodriguez(1997) and Arlene Davila (1991) postulates United States Latinos as stereotyped beings having a particular physical appearance with brown skin and dark straight hair distinct from non-Latino Americans. The Latin Americans were subjected to slave labor which was a form of oppression for them created by the whites. The whites described Mexicans as a mixed-race which needed to be taught the Eurocentric way to advance their inferior civilization (Horsman, 1981).
Generally, Latinos are considered as an external threat and an internal enemy of the United States (Leo Chavez, 2001). Over the years, a strong fight has been waged in the United States to provide equal rights and privileges to Latinos as to the Americans. Therefore our essay will try to discuss how the Latin presence challenges the American idea of race, historical imagination, and narrative.
Reviewing the story of Alexander Hamilton who was a Latino he achieved great things contrary to the expectation of the whites. Latinos were considered as inferior and people with a deficiency of knowledge hence nothing productive would come from them. Alexander Hamilton became a scholar and has greatly influenced the development of the United States. He was granted a position as in charge of trading and also became a great influencer of the constitution. His legacy remains up to today for his achievements. Despite his historical and racial backgrounds which were discriminatory factors, he proved that Latinos are also part of the United States through his doings.
The rapid population growth of Latinos in America has remained a great challenge as it is estimated that they contribute to 15 percent of the United States’ total population (U.S Census Bureau, 2008). From the current trends, Latinos are likely to account for 60 percent of America’s total population between the years 2005 to 2050. Mexicans in the United States have been granted citizenship as whites changing the perception of Americans that Latinos are inferior. Putting the Mexican Americans on juries was tantamount to elevating them to equal status with whites. This was a threat to the Americans as some of their spaces in the nation would be filled up by Latinos.
The United States Congress passed a remarkable bill relating to the economic and social statistics of Americans with Spanish origin. This was as a result of seeing how the Latino was suffering from political discrimination and lack of basic opportunities as American citizens. Being part of the population in the country, the government was challenged by this and declared equal opportunities on them as eligible citizens of the United States. This has changed the perception that Latinos are not American citizens.
To conclude the afros Latin are very much left out in national and international discussions. Being considered as inferiors who have no rights of their own. Latinos and Hispanics having deeper roots in American soil tend to have equal rights and privileges as the whites. The racial and historical background should not be used as factors to discriminate against others. Alexander Hamilton being a Latino and thriving in the American government and making it to the top is a clear indication that race and historical narratives are things that should be put aside for people to live together in harmony. I highly recommend that all people should be treated equally all over the globe despite their distinctive features.
Chavez, Leo R, 2001. Covering Immigration: Popular Images and the Politics of the Nation. Berkeley; University of California Press.
Davila, Arlene. 2001. Latinos Inc.: The Marketing and Making of a People. Berkeley: University of California Press.
Horsman, Reginald. 1981. Race and Manifest Destiny: The Origin of Americans Racial Anglo-Saxonism. Cambridge, M.A: Harvard University Press.
Rodriguez, Clara E… (ed.). 1997. Latin Looks: Images of Latinas and Latinos in the U.S. Media. Boulder, CO: Westview Press.
U.S. Census Bureau. 2008. “U.S Hispanic Population Surpasses 45 Million, Now 15 Percent ofTotal” At:http://WWW.Census.gov/PressRelease/WWW/releases/archives/population/011910.html
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