History of Latino Americans
Latinos have been a part of American history dating back to the early 1500’s (Ruiz, 2006). The history of Latinos is based on their highly developed cultures, with achievements in agriculture, textiles, and medical practices, Mayan, Incan, and Aztec empires (Hall & Ba 2002). However, American history involving Latinos is limited to myth and misconceptions based on the U.S.-Mexican War and the Treaty of Guadalupe Hildago (Ruiz, 2006).
According to the U.S. Census Bureau America celebrates the culture and traditions of U.S. residents who trace their roots to Spain, Mexico and the Spanish-speaking nations of Central America, South America and the Caribbean. Sept. 15 was chosen as the starting point for the celebration because it is the anniversary of independence of five Latin American countries: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. In addition, Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on Sept. 16 and Sept. 18, respectively (U.S. Census Bureau, 2008). In an article by Vicki Ruiz which highlights the various Latino, Hispanic, and Spanish speaking individuals experience Latinos have a rich history in the United States (2006). Ruiz gives private details based on the journal and diary entries of some of the most famous historians which give clear accounts of Latino culture being part of American culture for centuries. However, like many other minorities Latino American history has been left out of American History and is based on a “national amnesia” (Ruiz, 2006).
Characteristics that affect American Society
One might think that the average Hispanic household is no different from any other American household. Currently the Hispanic population accounts for 14% of the American population which is set to double by the year 2050 (US Census Bureau, 2008). As the largest and continuously growing minority or subculture in American society, Latino Americans play a huge part in the future of the...