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La Tribuna, Honduras

Latin Americans Bloom in US

By Noé Pineda Portillo

Translated By Jane Esi Hagan

30 November 2012

Edited by Natalie Clager

Honduras - La Tribuna - Original Article (Spanish)

No one can deny the current growth of Latin Americans in the United States. Only a few decades ago Latin Americans were a relatively insignificant ethnic minority in that big country up north. We see ourselves as Latin American, not Hispanics, a term which includes speakers of Spanish, Portuguese, French and Italian, although the majority is Spanish-speaking. “Latin American” includes a diverse set of people within one community, a community which, with Anglo-Saxon culture, is forming a symphonious amalgam of North American culture.

In recent political elections we have seen a marked presence of the so-called “Hispanics” in the United States, a community to whom President Barack Obama owes an enormous debt. He is obliged to make good on his campaign promises, especially regarding immigration reform. He needs to address this issue, along with issues relating to youth, with utmost urgency.

This ethnic minority whose presence is felt today through the popular vote will have a huge say in future elections and, more to the point, will be the catalyst for democratic development in all Latin America, as Latinos assume public administration positions. That said, political, economic and cultural relations between the two geopolitical blocs of the American continent must make an about-turn, since currently this does not seem possible.

In 1950 the Latin American community in the United States was not more than 1 percent. It then rose to 10 percent in 1995, at the end of the century. By 2050 is it estimated the number will reach about 33 percent. While it will always be a minority, it is easy to imagine how the effervescent Latino character could shake things up. This minority, together with those of African and Asian descent, will affect political, economic and cultural questions in the nation and the world.

This is why Latin Americanization is so prevalent in Anglo-Saxon America. We now eat tacos, enchiladas, baleadas, breads and various mixes of foods in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami and other cities in the United States. Even while living outside our dear home countries, we don’t miss much, especially since the geographical distance is closing fast.



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