Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

6/27/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Indigenous Mexicans can have an exceptionally difficult time adjusting to life in the Unted States.

The Mexican immigrant suffers a stereotype in American culture. Mexican immigrants tend to be poor, they tend to be laborers, they tend to be resourceful, religious, and share strong family values. They enjoy lavish celebrations filled with music and color. And of course, they speak Spanish. Also, we'd be wrong to believe this.

The indigenous people of Mexico do not always speak Spanish and face additional barriers to life in the United States.

The indigenous people of Mexico do not always speak Spanish and face additional barriers to life in the United States.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

6/27/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Americas

Keywords: Mexico, indigenous, stereotypes


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - National Geographic recently shattered this stereotype for its readers with the publication of an article entitled "The Other Mexicans." The article points out a very simple reality - that Mexico also has indigenous people who do not share the mainstream Mexican culture.

In the United States we have several Native American populations. Each one is distinct with its own system of beliefs, language, traditions, and styles. The same holds true for Mexico. The indigenous people of Mexico have their own cultures and languages that are very distinct from mainstream Mexican culture.

While in Mexico, these people have the support of their communities, often living in traditional villages and following the customs of their people. However, these people also migrate, and many come to the United States where they seek work and a better life.

In the United States, the assumption is often that all people from Mexico speak Spanish, but this isn't always the case. National Geographic mentioned the case of Jaminez Xum, an indigenous day laborer from Guatemala who spoke neither Spanish nor English. Police shot and killed Xum after he failed to respond to commands given in both languages. Xum wasn't seeking to act criminally, he just didn't understand, and the police had no idea he spoke a language they didn't know.

In California, there are some 200,000 indigenous Mexicans, many who do not speak fluent Spanish, and no English whatsoever. There are tens of thousands living in other states as well, mostly in the American southwest.

The dual-language barrier means many are subject to more abuse than even their fellow Mexicans. States tend to be very good about providing at least a minimal level of services to Spanish-speakers, including bilingual documents and signage as well as readily available translators. Mexicans have also done well to organize and serve the immigrant population in the United States, but indigenous Mexicans still have difficulty accessing even these support services.

Indigenous Mexicans report higher rates of workplace harassment, including sexual harassment, discrimination, and abuse. Children in schools report being teased and bullied by both English speaking and Spanish speaking students. With few faculty and staff able to communicate, these kids can be neglected and fall behind.

It isn't just language that gives indigenous Mexicans a shock. It's everything else as well. Many come from small tribal communities where elders make decisions and there are no jails or cars. According to National Geographic, people in these communities are accustomed to growing their own food and even fetching their own water.

One native said of the difference, "Back home, before you cut a tree you ask permission of the Earth. Here there are no trees."

Religious differences abound too. While many indigenous Mexicans are Catholic, they tend to blend their ancestral religious practices with their Christianity. This creates yet another barrier to integration. Even in the faith, where they should be comfortable, there are barriers.

As a society, we need to understand that Mexican culture is anything but homogenous. Just as in the United States, culture is unique to various regions and ancestries, so too Mexico is a rich tapestry of diversity.

The sooner we recognize this and drop the stereotypes, the sooner we can appreciate all of its myriad colors.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for March 2015
Universal:
Scientists: That those involved in scientific research may serve the well-being of the whole human person.
Evangelization: Contribution of women: That the unique contribution of women to the life of the Church may be recognized always.


Rosaries, Crosses, Prayer Cards and more... by Catholic Shopping .com


Comments


More Americas

First U.S. Hispanic Saint: Pope Francis to canonize Junipero Serra during U.S. visit Watch

Image of Father Junipero Serra's canonization will

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pope Francis and the Vatican have announced plans to canonize the Blessed Junipero Serra during the Pope's visit to the United States on September 23. Serra will become the United States' first Hispanic saint. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Often times, the ... continue reading


Canadian couple takes to amazing floating fortress to get away from it all Watch

Image of Located off the coast of Tofino, British Columbia, Freedom Cove was built in 1992. The couple, who have two children, live in the home year round.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Wayne Adams and Catherine King  are an unconventional Canadian couple who have forsaken the bustle of city life with their floating fortress that they've named "Freedom Cove." Off the grid and self-sustaining, the pink and green floating home is a welcome respite ... continue reading


New species of prehistoric 'terror bird' found in Argentina Watch

Image of Researchers say that the Llallawavis likely lived around 3.5 million years ago, near the end of terror birds' reign. It stood about four feet tall and weighed about 40 pounds.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Birds, it is commonly believed, evolved from dinosaurs. However, between now and then, some horrific, carnivorous birds ruled the prehistoric world with an iron claw. A new species of "terror bird" has been uncovered in Argentina; paleontologists are gaining ... continue reading


Dozens of mummies uncovered in Peru's Cotahuasi Valley Watch

Image of Finding the reasons behind the selective destruction of the mummies and artifacts is a challenge.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Tombs, containing at least 40 mummies each have been discovered in Peru's Cotahuasi Valley. Archaeologists say that at least 171 mummies have been unearthed at the 1,200-year-old ceremonial site. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Located on small hills ... continue reading


Underground tunnel between U.S. and Mexico found hidden in wardrobe Watch

Image of When soldiers raided the property, they also reportedly seized 44 pounds of marijuana and a truck being used by the racket to move the excavated earth.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

An average wooden wardrobe near San Diego served a far more sinister purpose. Concealed within its doors was a small trapdoor that led to a secret underground passageway stretching some 500 feet towards the U.S. border. The Mexican military uncovered the ... continue reading


Rare video shows 'successful' exorcism on woman 'possessed by devil' Watch

Image of Laura was described by locals as

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A 22-year-old woman, only identified as Laura, was reportedly a good girl before the devil turned her bad, according to Argentina locals. In this disturbing footage, Laura is seen writhing in pain, screaming as Bishop Manuel Acuna performs an exorcism on her. LOS ... continue reading


Magical Chilean hotel straight from 'The Hobbit:' features living wall, waterfall Watch

Image of The hotel, completely made out of wood and stone, is located under the majestic Andes Mountain range, the unique hotel is right in the middle of one of the most valued, as well as endangered regions in the world.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Montana Magica Lodge, located in the middle of the southern Andes is something straight from "The Hobbit." It is a literal "Magic Mountain." There is a manmade volcano with a stunning waterfall cascading down its side. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


Falling to progress, the beautiful Lake Nicaragua will be compromised by artificial canal Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A massive, fabricated canal, headed by the Hong Kong-based consortium HK Nicaragua Canal Development Investment Company, or HKND is set to undergo construction. The $50 billion project, called the Nicaragua Canal, or the Nicaragua Grand Canal and Inter-oceanic ... continue reading


Mummified bodies of two climbers missing for 55 years believed found Watch

Image of Local officials are confident that the cadavers correspond to two of three Mexicans who went missing after an avalanche 55 years ago.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

At 18,000 feet, Pico de Orizaba in Mexico is the country's highest elevated level. Several climbers have lost their lives trying to scale the mountain. The skeletal remains of two climbers, recently discovered there, are believed to be two of three members of ... continue reading


Villarrica's spectacular eruption: Nature's version of 'fireworks' Watch

Image of

By Hannah Raissa Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Chile's most active volcano finally erupted, after starting to show signs of seismic disturbance a few days ago. The volcanic activity raised alarm to over 3,300 residents who were evacuated from the small towns of Villarrica, Pucon and Conaripe before the eruption ... continue reading


All Americas News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Psalm, Psalms 117:1, 2
1 Meanwhile Saul was still breathing threats to ... Read More

Gospel, John 6:52-59
52 Then the Jews started arguing among themselves, ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for April 24th, 2015 Image

St. Fidelis of Sigmaringen
April 24: Franciscan Capuchin martyr. He was born Mark Rey is Sigmaringen, ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter