Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Hispanic/Latino identity crisis

When Labels Don't Fit:  Hispanics and Their Views of Identity

WASHINGTON D.C. -- Nearly four decades after the United States government mandated the use of the terms "Hispanic" or "Latino" to categorize Americans who trace their roots to Spanish-speaking countries, a new nationwide survey of Hispanic adults finds that these terms still haven't been fully embraced by Hispanics themselves. A majority (51%) say they most often identify themselves by their family's country of origin; just 24% say they prefer a pan-ethnic label.

Moreover, by a ratio of more than two-to-one (69% versus 29%), survey respondents say that the more than 50 million Latinos in the U.S. have many different cultures rather than a shared common culture. Respondents do, however, express a strong, shared connection to the Spanish language. More than eight-in-ten (82%) Latino adults say they speak Spanish, and nearly all (95%) say it is important for future generations to continue to do so.

Hispanics are also divided over how much of a common identity they share with other Americans. About half (47%) say they consider themselves to be very different from the typical American. And just one-in-five (21%) say they use the term "American" most often to describe their identity. On these two measures, U.S.-born Hispanics (who now make up 48% of Hispanic adults in the country) express a stronger sense of affinity with other Americans and America than do immigrant Hispanics.

The survey finds that, regardless of where they were born, large majorities of Latinos say that life in the U.S. is better than in their family's country of origin. Also, nearly nine-in-ten (87%) say it is important for immigrant Hispanics to learn English in order to succeed in the U.S.

This report explores Latinos' attitudes about their identity, including race; their language usage patterns; their core values; and their views about the U.S. and their families' country of origin. It is based on findings from a national bilingual survey of 1,220 Hispanic adults conducted Nov. 9 through Dec. 7, 2011, by the Pew Hispanic Center, a project of the Pew Research Center.

The report, "When Labels Don't Fit: Hispanics and Their Views of Identity," authored by Paul Taylor, Director, Pew Hispanic Center, Mark Hugo Lopez, Associate Director, Pew Hispanic Center, Jessica Hamar Martínez, Research Associate, Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, and Gabriel Velasco, Research Analyst, Pew Hispanic Center, is available at the Pew Hispanic Center's website, www.pewhispanic.org.

The Pew Hispanic Center, a project of the Pew Research Center, is a nonpartisan, non-advocacy research organization based in Washington, D.C. and is funded by The Pew Charitable Trusts.

2 comments:

  1. Amicus Briefs to Supreme Court opposing SB 1070 - Prominent American Personalities of more importance than those that support the Law, 11 states : California, New York, Illinois, etc, more than 40 cities : Tucson, Flagstaff, San Luis in AZ

    By contrast, no member of any prior federal administration joined a brief supporting SB 1070. Opposition to SB 1070 is far broader than its proponents care to admit. Public opinion polls simply cannot account for the types of problems that will occur if Arizona-type laws take effect—whether from a fiscal, foreign relations, or law enforcement standpoint.


    Immigration Impact
    Supreme Court Flooded with Briefs Opposing Arizona SB 1070
    by Ben Winograd
    April 5, 2012


    http://immigrationimpact.com/2012/03/29/supreme-court-flooded-with-briefs-opposing-arizona-sb-1070/


    Some excerpts :

    One brief filed in opposition to SB 1070 was joined by a former Secretary of State (Madeline Albright), a former Secretary of Defense (William Cohen), and two former ambassadors to the United Nations (Albright and John Negroponte). Another brief was submitted on behalf of two former commissioners of the Immigration and Naturalization Service (Doris Meissner and James Ziglar). By contrast, no member of any prior federal administration joined a brief supporting SB 1070.

    Eleven states—with a combined population of nearly 100 million—submitted a brief opposing SB 1070, including California, New York, and Illinois. More than 40 cities and counties also filed a brief opposing the law, three of which are located in Arizona (Tucson, Flagstaff, and San Luis).

    A brief filed on behalf of 68 pro-immigrant members of Congress was joined by Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and other high-ranking members of the House Democratic leadership. By contrast, no member of the House Republican leadership signed a pro-SB 1070 brief filed on behalf of fifty conservative lawmakers.

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