Latino population in the United States

Latino population

It is not news that the Latino population in the United States is growing. Latino immigrants come from different countries and mobilized for different causes, however, the fundamental motive is one: the search for a better quality of life.

This growth of the Latino population has long-standing historical origins.

-It began in 1846-1848, during the Mexican-American War. This was one of the first territorial expansion wars for the United States and resulted in the loss of much of the Mexican territory, including Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, California, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Wyoming, Kansas, and Oklahoma. The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, signed in February 1848, ended the war and established the terms of peace.

-In 1942, the United States signed the Mexican Agricultural Labor Agreement with Mexico, it was a series of laws and diplomatic agreements, which is informally known as the “Bracero Agreement” (Mexican Farm Labor Program). This measure was prompted by the need for labor after World War II and was maintained until 1964.

-Later, due to the Cuban revolution (1953-1959) led by Fidel Castro and Che Guevara, in which the communist regime was established in Cuba, many Cubans were exiled to the United States, due to the limitations resulting from said regime. in matters of civil and political liberty.

-Another factor that contributed to the Latino migratory phenomenon occurred almost two decades later, with the Nicaraguan Revolution, whose main objective was to end the Somoza regime, an authoritarian dynasty that had ruled Nicaragua for more than 40 years.

After the revolutionary victory, a series of social and economic reforms were implemented in the country, including the nationalization of land and industry, and the creation of free education and health programs for the population. However, the Nicaraguan Revolution also faced internal and external opposition, and the country was plunged into civil war in the 1980s.

-The civil war of El Salvador (1980-1992). It was an armed conflict between the government and a coalition of leftist forces. During the war, both sides committed serious human rights violations and war crimes. The war resulted in the deaths of more than 75,000 people and the displacement of hundreds of thousands of people. In 1992, a peace agreement was signed, through which the armed conflict ended, and the path was opened towards a transition towards a more inclusive political and economic system in El Salvador.

-The Mariel Boatlift, a mass movement of Cubans who left the port of Mariel (Cuba) for the United States between April and October 1980. The immigrants or members of this exodus are known as the “marielitos”.

The exodus was initiated by then-Cuban leader Fidel Castro, who announced that any Cuban who wanted to leave the country could do so through the port of Mariel, on Cuba’s west coast. Thousands of Cubans took the opportunity to flee the island, mostly to Florida.
The Mariel Boatlift caused a humanitarian and political crisis in the United States, where many of the Cuban immigrants were detained in immigrant camps and faced difficulties finding work and housing.

-Another decisive factor was the implementation of the NAFTA agreement in 1994.
The main objective of NAFTA was to create a market free of trade barriers between the three countries, promoting the exchange of goods, services and capital.
NAFTA has been controversial since its implementation. Some argue that it has contributed to the economic growth of the three countries and has improved global competitiveness. Others argue that it has had a negative impact on workers and increased economic inequality.
In 2017, US President Donald Trump threatened to abandon NAFTA and negotiate a trade deal more favorable to US interests. After years of negotiations, the three countries agreed to a new trade agreement, known as the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), which took effect in 2020. The USMCA maintains many of the key aspects of NAFTA, but includes new regulations and protections in areas such as intellectual property rights and the environment.

Undoubtedly, Latino population growth in the United States is an extensive topic that cannot be exhausted in a single article. This is a brief introduction to the historical background that contributed to this huge migratory and social phenomenon.

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