Illegal immigration in the U.S. comes up on the radar every so often in the political arena. There is no question that we need a solution in order to make sure all of our citizens are documented. The bigger issue, that everyone seems to be missing, is the way the immigration debate is influencing people’s perceptions about immigrants, in a negative way. I believe that it is affecting the unity and strength of our country. I’m not saying that illegal immigration itself is causing this breakdown. It’s the fact that the issue has become intertwined with other issues that are completely independent of the immigration debate. We all know that America is considered the melting pot. Most people accept this description and are proud of it; until one ingredient seems to be dominating the pot. Then we get worried. Then we start to worry that our way of life may change. Right now, Hispanics are causing this worry for many, because they are the largest and fastest growing minority group in the pot.
One of the biggest concerns for people is that Hispanics are not learning English. This is simply not true for the majority of Hispanics. Across the country, English as a second language classes are overcrowded and have waiting lists backed up for months. Additionally, millions of English language programs for self-paced learning are sold in stores each year. They are learning English in schools, in libraries and at home.
Among the many arguments discussed in the ongoing debate over immigration, there is at least one on which most agree: learning English is crucial to economic and social success in the United States. Speaking and understanding English means obtaining a better job, better communication with doctors, improved relationship with teachers, etc.
Regardless of your stand on the immigration debate, it is really an independent and separate issue. The majority of Hispanics are willing to work hard, learn English and contribute to society. They come to America for the same reasons all other immigrants came here throughout history; they are looking for opportunities and a better life for themselves and their families.
Helping Hispanics achieve this success, will benefit not only Hispanics, but our entire society . The Latin American Dream site was created to provide Hispanics the free information they need to improve their lives in the US.