por Lianza Reyes
Throughout history, Hispanic culture has always had a great impact on the growth of the United States. Although there is intense controversy about immigration, we should remember that we need immigrants for economic and cultural growth. For example, in the California Gold Rush in the 1850s, in the United States, we needed 10,000 Mexican miners to enrich the industry. At the same time, during the last century, the number of Hispanic immigrants that entered the country increased, since Asian workers could not enter the United States. (National Park Service I.S. Department of Interior)
For this reason, the Hispanic influence has changed landscape of our culture, especially in areas of food, style, and music. More or less 90% of non-Hispanics believe that the biggest influence is food, and there is a powerful belief that biculturalism is a positive thing (This Hispanic Influence on American Culture, 2012). It’s easy to see examples of biculturalism. For example, there are a many restaurants that serve Mexican food. Chains like Chipotle are very popular. There is the music of Shakira, the celebration of the Day of the Dead, and the popularity of baseball; all are emphasized in our daily life.
And the influence that is most present in daily life is seen in the population. There are 52 million Hispanic people in the United States – one in six people – and this figure is predicted to increase. Many famous people are Hispanic or are of Hispanic descent. Some examples include Jennifer Lopez, Penelope Cruz, Eva Longoria, and more (Latin American Influence in the USA).
If there were not as many Hispanics in this country, the development of the United States would be different, and in some ways, less diverse. For myself, the Hispanic culture will affect my identity and my future as a journalist in the United States and in the Philippines. I have studied the political landscape of this country, especially in the media. I believe that the news media in Spanish has the power to change the kind of questions we discuss.
“Latin American Influences in the USA – Hispanic Culture.” Don Quijote: Spanish Language Learning since 1986, http://www.donquijote.org/culture/spain/society/people/latin-american-influences
The Hispanic Influence on American Culture. Conill, 2012. http://www.ahaa.org/Portals/0/Research/The%20Hispanic%20Consumer/Power%2C%20Influence%20%26%20Behavior/The%20Hispanic%20Influence%20On%20American%20Culture%202012.pdf
“An History Overview of Latino Immigration and the Demographic Transformation of the United States.” National Parks Service, U.S. Department of Interior. https://www.nps.gov/heritageinitiatives/latino/latinothemestudy/immigration.htm