Where there is a Mexican, there is Mexico. Mexico does not end at its borders.
- Mexican President Felipe Calderon, 2007
Hispanics, also known as Mestizos, are a major population group in the world, numbering in the hundreds of millions. There are 20 Latin American nations that cover a span of millions of square miles, from Argentina in South to Mexico in the North. Latin American nations have vibrant cultures, colorful traditions and their peoples have many virtues.
In the U.S., Hispanics are the largest minority group, and also the fastest growing population group in terms of new citizens, due to both high birthrates and immigration. Between 2000 and 2006, they grew from 35 million to 44 million, with most Hispanics located in California, Texas and New Mexico. The Census Bureau projects that there will be over 100 million people of Hispanic origin by 2050, and 1 in 4 of all Americans. This is probably an under-estimation, because the number of Hispanics would increase far more if an Amnesty bill is passed. Congress passed such a bill in 1986, and almost did so again in 2006. This initiative is strongly supported by the Hispanic community, which is an influential voting bloc, and remains a high priority for many political figures in 2010. It is estimated that there are 12 to 20 million illegal immigrants in the U.S., which are about 80% Hispanic.
Decisions on Amnesty and immigration will have a major impact on the future course of the United States, and should only be made after examining the impact that Hispanics have already had on the nation. In any case, the Hispanic community will experience explosive growth in the coming decades. In order to understand what this will mean for America, it is vital that we gain a better understanding of the Hispanic community.