Even so, just 33% of these young second generation Latinos use American first, while 21% refer to themselves first by the terms Hispanic or Latino, and the plurality—41%—refer to themselves first by the country their parents left in order to settle and raise their children in this country.
Only in the third and higher generations do a plurality of Hispanic youths (50%) use “American” as their first term of self-description. Nearly 40 million immigrants have come to the United States since 1965.
Their reasons vary, and not all are consistent with one another.
Some scholars point to structural changes in modern economies that make it more difficult for unskilled laborers to climb into the middle class.
As might be expected, they do better than their foreign-born counterparts on many key economic, social and acculturation indicators analyzed in this report.
They are much more proficient in English and are less likely to drop out of high school, live in poverty or become a teen parent. S.-born Latino youths do no better than the foreign born. For example, native-born Latino youths are about twice as likely as the foreign born to have ties to a gang or to have gotten into a fight or to have carried a weapon in the past year. The picture becomes even more murky when comparisons are made among youths who are first generation (immigrants themselves), second generation (U.
Some say the fatalism of Latin American cultures is a poor fit in a society built on Anglo-Saxon values.
The generational analyses presented here do not compare the outcomes of individual Latino immigrants with those of their own children or grandchildren.Some say the illegal status of so many of today’s immigrants is a major obstacle to their upward mobility.Some say the close proximity of today’s sending countries and the relative ease of modern global communication reduce the felt need of immigrants and their families to acculturate to their new country.An additional 20% generally use the terms “Hispanic” or “Latino” first when describing themselves.Only about one-in-four (24%) generally use the term “American” first. S.-born children of immigrants, “American” is somewhat more commonly used as a primary term of self-identification.Illegal immigration, in particular, has become a highly-charged political issue in recent times.It is also a relatively new phenomenon; past immigration waves did not generate large numbers of illegal immigrants because the U. imposed fewer restrictions on immigration flow in the past than it does now.This report takes an in-depth look at Hispanics who are ages 16 to 25, a phase of life when young people make choices that—for better and worse—set their path to adulthood.For this particular ethnic group, it is also a time when they navigate the intricate, often porous borders between the two cultures they inhabit—American and Latin American.The report explores the attitudes, values, social behaviors, family characteristics, economic well-being, educational attainment and labor force outcomes of these young Latinos.It is based on a new Pew Hispanic Center telephone survey of a nationally representative sample of 2,012 Latinos, supplemented by the Center’s analysis of government demographic, economic, education and health data sets. Young Latinos are satisfied with their lives, optimistic about their futures and place a high value on education, hard work and career success.Yet they are much more likely than other American youths to drop out of school and to become teenage parents.They are more likely than white and Asian youths to live in poverty. These are attitudes and behaviors that, through history, have often been associated with the immigrant experience. Two-thirds were born in the United States, many of them descendants of the big, ongoing wave of Latin American immigrants who began coming to this country around 1965.The current wave may differ from earlier waves in other ways as well.