HISPANICS & When Labels Don’t Fit: A Conversation About Identity #PewResearch

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: “Research indicates that many Hispanic and Latino Americans lean more towards being “dissonant adapters” rather than “consonant adapters.” This means our churches must respect their cultures and language by giving them equal access and privilege in our congregations. For more on this see my explanations on how this can foster healthy churches in ORGANIX (the chapter called “Graffiti” about the colorful ethnic mix America is becoming).”

When Labels Don’t Fit: Hispanics and Their Views of Identity by PAUL TAYLOR, MARK HUGO LOPEZ, JESSICA MARTÍNEZ and GABRIEL VELASCO, Pew Research, 4/4/12

“Nearly four decades after the United States government mandated the use of the terms ‘Hispanic’ or ‘Latino’ to categorize Americans who trace their roots to Spanish-speaking countries, a new nationwide survey of Hispanic adults finds that these terms still haven’t been fully embraced by Hispanics themselves. A majority (51%) say they most often identify themselves by their family’s country of origin; just 24% say they prefer a pan-ethnic label.

Hispanics are also divided over how much of a common identity they share with other Americans. About half (47%) say they consider themselves to be very different from the typical American. And just one-in-five (21%) say they use the term ‘American’ most often to describe their identity. On these two measures, U.S.-born Hispanics (who now make up 48% of Hispanic adults in the country) express a stronger sense of affinity with other Americans and America than do immigrant Hispanics.”Moreover, by a ratio of more than two-to-one (69% versus 29%), survey respondents say that the more than 50 million Latinos in the U.S. have many different cultures rather than a common culture. Respondents do, however, express a strong, shared connection to the Spanish language. More than eight-in-ten (82%) Latino adults say they speak Spanish, and nearly all (95%) say it is important for future generations to continue to do so.

Read more at … http://www.pewhispanic.org/2012/04/04/when-labels-dont-fit-hispanics-and-their-views-of-identity/