Racial discrimination “is a term used to describe unfair behavior afflicted on individuals based on their race” (LegalCyberTips, 2007, Para 1). The concept of racism has existed for decades. The act of one race attempting to exert supremacy over others has often resulted in racial discrimination (LegalCyberTips, 2007). Racial discrimination is a constant reality in the lives of Hispanic Americans in the United States. Due to alarming migration rates over the past several decades, the United States has experienced significant growth in ethnic and racial diversity. However, racial minority groups like the Hispanics; “the largest and fastest growing population in the United States, continue to ...view middle of the document...
S. Diplomatic Mission to Germany, 2008). In addition, Hispanic American is not just one culture with one religion; it is a multitude of cultures with different beliefs, political views, religions and customs.
In 1493, Christopher Columbus discovered the Island of Puerto Rico (McClain and Stewart, 2002). By the end of World War II in 1945, due to lack of jobs and an over populated Island; numerous Puerto Ricans were forced to migrate to the United States. Although, some chose to migrate willingly, many were compelled to migrate in search of a better life and economic opportunity. Since then, Puerto Rico still runs on very little social and economic help, forcing many Puerto Ricans to continue to leave their Island, and come to the mainland in search of a better life for themselves and their families.
Segregation has been a social problem that every Hispanic has dealt with since their migration to the United States. Although, the Hispanic population has become the largest minority group throughout the United States they continue to be segregated (Clutter & Nieto, 2000). This segregation is, in fact, due to society’s preconceived notions of Hispanics; for example, some Puerto Rican families often find themselves fighting off the label of welfare recipient or bum. Due to traditional Hispanic familial ties adjusting to contemporary family dynamics has been difficult for Puerto Ricans; thus, making them quite different in their general perceptions of family. Their strong belief in family traditions has separated them from the mainstream population causing segregation.
Racial Discrimination and Hispanics 4
Many times members of society hold biases against the Hispanic community for retaining their native language. Adapting to the mainstream culture’s expectations, often forces Puerto Ricans to displace their native lifestyle as means of acceptance. Consequently, the only facet of adaptation that the Hispanics have control of is their native tongue. Furthermore, while most Americans value the diversity and traditions, which creates what many know as the melting pot, others simply fail to recognize the importance of such diversity.
Nicolette Cutler, a student of Trinity College and avid Puerto Rico Researcher stated that, despite the fact that many Puerto Ricans were able to find work in the United States and live better than they had in Puerto Rico, they could never feel like this was their new home. Faced with racism and injustice daily, the Puerto Rican population had to face the fact that they were not considered citizens of the United States. From 1898 until 1917, Puerto Ricans were considered citizens of nowhere (Para.4).
In the 1970’s Puerto Ricans faced racial redlining practices from vendors which prevented Hispanics from relocating to better areas. Community vendors believed that if Hispanics moved into better areas their property and value would decrease (Wilson, 2007). Although the churches welcomed and provided...