America: The Continent of the Great Migration.

Today we have flown to the american continent. Most of us already know how big this continent is and how much of an affect on our societies one of its biggest countries: The United States of America has. Which has always had great migrations all through out its history.

The United States has been the first country to overcome a great migration and where even today occurs the most alarming conflicts when talking about inequality.

Between 2011  and 2015 the population of immigrants into The United States has grown to 4.1 million people. Steven A. Camarota researcher in the Washington Centre for Immigration Studies, confirms that this data should be considered with the idea in mind that the number of new immigrants is much larger than the growth in the immigration population because every year approximately half a million immigrants die or return home. Return migration and deaths offset new arrivals. The data that we have cited corresponds to the amount of illegal and legal immigrants.

Different to the previous post, now we are not speaking about refugees. This is because the largest party of immigrants that arrive in The United States are from Mexico, which is a state with a “stable government” but at the same time, is one of the most dangerous states in the world largely due to organised crime. The total Mexican immigrant population (legal and illegal) reached 12.1 million in the second quarter of 2015 – the highest quarterly total ever. The Mexicans that are fleeing in search of a better place, have primarily left due to the instability of their state.

Those Mexican individuals, instead of being considered as refugees, are called “illegal immigrants” when they don’t possess the corresponding visa or “legal immigrants” in the case that they have the required visa. This is similar to the process that Australia has when processing immigrants. They need only to apply for a Visa when they wish to travel to The United States, which can be done simply through the government website.

But then, why are they also not considered refugees?

The border between Mexico and United States is involved in one of the most well-known controversies in relation to illegal traffic of persons and violations of human rights, however, those individuals do not receive the statute of refugee. Traffickers take advantage of their vulnerability in which they then generate illegal profit. In this border, “coyote” means the person whom one must pay to transport illegal immigrants in secret.

The immigration policies in The United States change in function depending on which State one is found. Most of the immigrants whom arrive to The United States are legal migrants, many problems are involved when they continue living in the country but their visa has expired. They only arrive in an illegal way when they are transported by the “coyote”.

After so many years of the migration process and cohabitation of both cultures, one can identify a few curiosities. Generally, Mexicans as US citizens have adopted traditions of both cultures. But also, one of the things that really attracts our attention is that, any child born in the US from immigrant parents adopts immediately the US nationality. It does not happen in many countries of Europe or Oceania.

One of the great changes caused by migration in the development of the US was the introduction of the Spanish language. The United States places as the second country in the world when it comes to Spanish-speakers. In the middle of 2015, 41 million people could speak Spanish as a native tongue and 11.6 million were bilingual. Keeping in mind that this country has a population of 319 million people and that more than 50 million speaks Spanish, it would make sense that many policies have to adapt to such a cultural diversity.

We would have to travel to The United States to truly understand what real problems exist, it is an issue that grows by the day.

  • Does anyone have anything we might have missed?
  • Does anyone have any first hand experience migrating to The United States?

We hope you have enjoyed today’s post.

Thank you for your comments!!

Hoy hemos volado hasta el continente americano. La gran mayoría de nosotros sabemos lo enorme que es y el papel que juega en nuestras sociedades uno de sus países más grandes: los Estados Unidos. El cual ha estado marcado, a lo largo de su historia, por grandes fenómenos migratorios.

Estados Unidos ha sido el país pionero en superar un gran proceso migratorio y dónde todavía hoy se producen los conflictos más preocupantes en el ámbito de la desigualdad.

Entre 2011 y 2015 la población inmigrante en Estados Unidos ha crecido en 4,1 millones de personas. Steven A. Camarota, investigador en el Centro para los Estudios sobre Inmigración de Washington, afirma que este dato debe considerarse bajo la idea de que el número de nuevos inmigrantes es mucho mayor que el número correspondiente al crecimiento de la población inmigrante ya que cada año aproximadamente medio millón de migrantes fallecen o vuelven a casa. Estos compensan las nuevas llegadas. Los datos que hemos citado corresponden a la suma de inmigrantes ilegales e inmigrantes legales.

A diferencia del post anterior, ahora ya no hablamos de refugiados. Esto es debido a que la mayor parte de los inmigrantes que llegan a Estados Unidos proceden de México, el cual es un país con un “gobierno estable” pero, al mismo tiempo, es uno de los países más peligrosos del mundo debido a las bandas organizadas. La población inmigrante mexicana (ilegal y legal) alcanzó los 12,1 millones en la segunda mitad de 2015 – el total trimestral más alto que nunca. Los mexicanos que están huyendo en busca de un lugar mejor, principalmente lo hacen debido a la inestabilidad de su gobierno.

Pero a estos individuos, en vez de ser considerados refugiados, se les llama “inmigrantes ilegales” por no poseer el visado correspondiente o “inmigrantes legales”, en caso de que lo tengan. Al igual que en Australia, cuando emigras a Estados Unidos las solicitudes de los visados se pueden hacer a través de la web del gobierno.

Pero, ¿por qué no se les considera también refugiados?

La frontera entre México y Estados Unidos está envuelta con una de las más reconocidas polémicas con respecto al tráfico ilegal de personas y violaciones de los derechos humanos, sin embargo, estas personas no reciben el estatuto de refugiado. Los traficantes se aprovechan de la situación de vulnerabilidad en la que se encuentran los migrantes para generar ganancias ilegales. En esta frontera por “coyote” se conoce a aquella persona a la que se le paga para transportar inmigrantes ilegales a escondidas.

Las políticas de inmigración en Estados Unidos dependen del Estado en el que se encuentren. La mayor parte de los inmigrantes que llegan a Estados Unidos lo hacen de forma legal, los problemas se producen cuando continúan viviendo en el país pero su visado ha expirado. Sólo llegan de forma ilegal aquellos inmigrantes transportados por los “coyotes”.

Después de tantos años de proceso migratorio y convivencia entre las dos culturas se pueden señalar dos curiosidades. Generalmente, tanto mexicano como estadounidenses han adoptado tradiciones de ambas culturas. Y, además, una de las cosas que más nos han llamado la atención es que, en caso de que alguien inmigrante tenga un hijo nacido en los Estados Unidos, el niño/a adquiere inmediatamente la nacionalidad estadounidense. Lo cual no sucede en muchos países de Europa u Oceanía.

Uno de los grandes cambios que produjo la migración en la construcción de este país fue la introducción de la lengua española. Estados Unidos se sitúa como el segundo país en el mundo con más hispano parlantes. A mediados del 2015 41 millones de personas hablaban español de forma nativa y 11,6 millones figuraban como bilingües. Teniendo en cuenta que este país cuenta con una población de casi 319 millones de personas y que más de 50 millones hablan español, obliga a que muchas de las políticas tengan que adaptarse a tal diversidad cultural.

Tenemos que viajar a este Estado para vivir un poco más de cerca cuál es la problemática real en la que se encuentran, es un problema que crece día a día.

  • ¿Hemos olvidado algo?
  • ¿Alguien podría contarnos alguna experiencia personal como migrante en Estados Unidos?

Esperamos que hayáis disfrutado del post de hoy.

¡Muchas gracias por vuestros comentarios!

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2 thoughts on “America: The Continent of the Great Migration.

  1. Mexicans and Central Americans won’t be considered refugees because then a ‘legal’ way would have been created for them to come to the US, which the government doesn’t want. Many people don’t know this, but President Obama has deported more illegal aliens in his first term as president than his predecessor’s two terms combined. But Obama offset that by giving asylum (they do not use this word officially but, to all intents and purposes, it is an asylum) to illegal aliens who are 26 or younger, mostly children who were brought here by their parents. They are allowed to request for work authorization and a social security number, which without in the US, you cannot do anything, not even get a driver’s license.
    Going back to the refugee thing, as you mentioned in your article, any person born on US soil is a US citizen (written in our Constitution) so many illegal immigrants while here, have a baby and have that baby petition them when they turn 18, but from age zero to 18, they pray they don’t get arrested and deported. I believe that migrants from Central American countries such as Honduras, El Salvador can be considered refugees since they live in a failed state run by drug gangs and thugs.
    About including cultural diversity or specifically Spanish in America’s mainstream…most social services offer free interpreting services in many languages not just Spanish. Many forms are bilingual, especially in states which hosts a large Spanish speaking population, like California, New Mexico, Texas and Arizona. Arizona tried to legally discriminate against Mexican immigrants but the law was struck down by Supreme Court as unconstitutional (the law basically said law enforcement can pull over anyone who ‘might look like’ he/she may be an illegal, therefore anyone who is brown or hispanic looking can be pull over by police). The only ‘protection’ migrants have is they get a right to due process before they are to be deported especially unaccompanied minors.
    The illegal migrants issue is a political hot button issue right now especially it’s election year. You have politicians wanting to pander to the hispanic vote but then appear to be ‘tough’ on illegal immigration at the same time, so they invent non-existent issues like “immigrants are stealing our jobs and costing our govt billions in service” etc.

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    • Thanks for the excellent comment “Everyday Voices”, as always it is very much appreciated! Your first hand knowledge and feedback is immensely helpful for us as we continue to write and learn about new topics around the globe.

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