Americas and Caribbean Islands Union By Ruben Barrera Botello, JD
Immigration is a major issue in the United States today. U.S. Latinos often express interest in this issue because of its direct impact on their families, schools, jobs, communities and governmental affairs. Latinos are the largest minority group in the U.S. and in the following states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington and Wyoming (see factfinder2.census.gov). Most Latinos in the U.S. are not immigrants, but most immigrants in the U.S. are from Latin America — and especially from Mexico — while most U.S. Latinos are of Mexican descent. Latino immigrants bring their languages, cultures and traditions with them from their native lands, and this adds to the sense of kinship or affinity many U.S. Latinos have with new arrivals. This natural phenomena makes it difficult to separate the two distinct groups of Latinos in the U.S. — immigrants and non-immigrants — when discussing the immigration issue even though most U.S. Latinos are not immigrants.