HisRepresenting nearly 63% Mexican Americans are the largest group of all the Hispanic Americans in the United States (US Census Bureau, 2011). Originally encouraged to settle into what is now Texas to boost Mexico’s economy. As the number of settlers increased, so did their want of autonomy – resulting in a battle over land and rights in the Mexican American War in 1846. According to “The U.S.-Mexican War, The Aftermath (2006)” by war’s end “approximately 80,000 Mexicans resided in the territory transferred to the United States as part of the Mexican-American War conclusion, the greatest numbers of whom were located in present-day New Mexico and California. Since then, the political relations between Mexican Americans and the United States have slowly made its progress. In the beginning, political participation was limited due to discrimination. In response to this type of discrimination, Mexican Americans formed activist groups and protective organizations known as ‘mutualistas’ (mutual aid societies). Through groups like these, Mexican Americans found their strength in politics. Their no nonsense approach to maltreatment aided in the support of the Fair Employment Practices Commission, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and the other subsequent affirmative action legislation. Since the 1960’s to present, Mexican Americans have proven their place in modern politics. As wages for ranchers and farmers continue to dwindle, migrants leave behind their ancestors traditional trades for opportunities with a wider range of work. This drew many Mexican Americans to other regions of the United States, such as the Midwest. “By 1990 only 2.9 percent of the Mexican American working population were employed in agriculture and forestry, with less than one percent in the mining industry. Professional and health and education services employed 20.3 percent of this specific labor force, while 16.4 percent had service occupations and 15.9 percent were in manufacturing. Over 16 percent held managerial and professional specialty positions” (Gale Research, 2001 ). Most immigrants from Mexico, as elsewhere, come from struggling backgrounds and from families generationally employed in lower skilled jobs. Thus, many new Mexican immigrants are not skilled in white collar professions. Recently, some professionals from Mexico have been migrating, but to make the transition from one country to another involves adapting to Americana and in some cases re-license themselves. As with many Hispanic cultures, most Mexican Americans are devote Catholics. Ceremoniesand rituals in recognition of events related to the birth and death of Jesus Christ are an essential part of the religious calendar of many Mexican Americans” (). Celebrations like the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, El Día de los Reyes Magos (Three Kings' Day), El Miércoles de Ceniza (Ash Wednesday) are important religious holidays recognized by the Mexican American culture to this day. Religious tradition remains consistent in the modern Mexican American culture, but family life has had its fair share of changes. From traditionally male dominated families to what is now more shared responsibilities in supporting and leading la familia (family). The Mexican American language derives from Spanish. However, it has it is not uncommon to find that Mexican Spanish reflects an informal dialect. They speak “English and Spanish and employ both languages actively in speaking or writing may move from one language to another within a given sentence, a linguistic phenomenon referred to as "code-switching” (Countries and Their Cultures, 2011).
Puerto Rican Americans or ‘Boriquenos’ make up the second largest Hispanic American group in the United States (Countries and Their Cultures, 2011). Initially native islanders migrated to America for contract labor work. Over time, the migration trend from their homeland of Puerto Rico to the United States...
References: US Census Bureau. (2011). Retrieved from http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/2010_census/cb11-cn146.html
Baker, S. (2002). Understanding Mainland Puerto Rican Poverty. Philadelphia, P: Temple University Press
Countries and Their Cultures. (2011). Retrieved from http://www.everyculture.com/multi/Pa-Sp/Puerto-Rican-Americans.html
The Cuban American National Foundation. (2011). Retrieved from http://www.canf.org/
Gale Research. (2001). Statistical Record of Hispanic Americans. Phoenix, Arizona: Oryx Press
Countries and Their Cultures. (2011). Retrieved from http://www.everyculture.com/multi/Bu-Dr/Colombian-Americans.html
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