Essay Example on Mexican Immigrants in US: 11.6M in 2017, 25% in 2020

Paper Type: 
Pages:  8
Wordcount:  1955 Words
Date:  2023-05-23


The issue of immigration of Mexican people into the United States is not a strange phenomenon to many. In the year 2017, almost 11.6 million immigrants into the US were from Mexico alone. 43% of the group had no legal documentation and therefore found themselves illegally in the country. Statistics show that today, and making up nearly 25% of immigrants in the US, Mexicans are by far the largest group. The Donald Trump administration has taken measures of reducing the illegal immigration of Mexicans into the country by increasing the number of law enforcement agents in the US-Mexico southern border (Barrera et al., 2019).

Trust banner

Is your time best spent reading someone else’s essay? Get a 100% original essay FROM A CERTIFIED WRITER!

Quite a several problems do face these Mexican immigrants once they cross-over to foreign lands. Some of these challenges have taken prevalence and require viable solutions. This essay, however, is going to focus on the issue of Communication and Language barrier as one of the main problems faced by Mexican immigrants. The article will also examine the history and reasons for the immigration of Mexicans into the States. The essay will also investigate the correlation between the language barrier and some emerging issues such as bringing up their kids, access to medical health care, securing housing, work, transportation, and accessing services. Besides, the inter-connectedness between language and culture will also be explored. In conclusion, the essay will also look at the positive side of fixing the issue of the language barrier between the Mexican community and the impact it will have on American society.

History and Reasons for Immigration

Throughout history, Mexico is a nation that has predominantly been sending its people across different borders for one issue or another. Violence, heavy-handed immigration policies, and violence in Central America has made Mexico a target State for transit and return over a couple of years (Portillo, 2018). Samovar et al. equally explain that unemployment and raised poverty concerns as the two significant factors for the massive immigration of Mexicans (188). He states that more than half of the Mexican people are living under the poverty level. Due to the insufficient supply of jobs, many of them decide to leave their homes in search of better opportunities abroad. The move has not been without good returns as the year 2012 saw an approximation of 22 billion dollars being remitted back to the Mexican economy by the immigrants (Samovar et al., 188). Such feats are among the reasons why Mexicans leave their families and seek better remuneration packages, which in turn support the nation's welfare.

Another problem that is making the Mexicans leave their homes is the continuous issue of drug-related violence and crime. From the year 2006, Mexico has had an on-going drug issue that claimed the lives of almost 60,000 citizens in the country alone (188). Also, the government has since 2013 spent a whopping 172.7billion dollars in fighting the same war, which accounts for one-tenth of the nation's GDP. Besides, apart from the war on drugs, kidnappings, violence, and extortion have taken precedence within the country as ordinary crimes. As a result, the militarization of the society has taken place as corruption has permeated up to political and law enforcement organizations alongside social, institutional establishments (188).

These factors have primarily eroded the public's confidence in the government, thus creating a wide-spread sense of fear and insecurity among the Mexicans.

The Issue of Language Barrier

In all honesty, the American country is not big for adapting foreign dialects and cultures. In short, the nation is not known for multilingualism. It hence becomes a challenge when immigrants from Mexico are forced to learn English, as it is the main form of communication. English is mandatory as it assists the immigrant to secure job opportunities, perform essential duties like filling out forms, and even purchasing of food items (Loue et al., 2011). For this reason, a substantial number of immigrants are forced to take ESL lessons, which at times prove to be quite hectic. The idea here is attributed to the fact that they have to balance work, kids, and classes. Another factor that is proving to be difficult for Mexican immigrants is the literacy part since, for them, this is a second language they are trying to assimilate.

Communication and language barrier hence becomes a stumbling block to many Mexicans, as is shown below. For instance, in terms of raising kids, a significant number of Mexican parents report incidents of bullying and discrimination for their children while in American schools (Nunez, 2014). Mexican children face castigation for not being able to converse like the native American youth and thus face challenges.

A second over-riding factor is between the parents and the kids themselves. Because the kids are young, their ability to learn, grasp, and understand the English language is higher and better than their parents. As a result, parents feel their children have then become "Americanized" see it as a threat to their family unity (Nunez, 2014). Furthermore, the Mexican parents may also lack the required skills and education needed to assist their children in being better communicators. Thus becomes a problem for the many Mexican immigrants living and working in the US.

Next is the issue of securing jobs for the immigrants once they get into the country. Finding a job becomes an uphill task, especially when one is not conversant in the English language. It then becomes easy more so for the undocumented and non-speaking Mexicans to land odd jobs that pose severe threats to their lives. It is, therefore, not a surprise to find a former educator or engineer working as a taxi driver in most American cities (Nunez, 2014). At the same time, it is a challenge for the employed immigrant to scale up the ladder in terms of promotions and better employment terms. This trait is attributed to the lack of certification, and most employers in the US prefer working with employees whose job experience has been within the country and not from outside. As a result, the Mexican becomes an easy target for discrimination and ill-treatment from their employers who sense their desperate need to keep and maintain their jobs (Nunez, 2014). Thus language is an essential equalizer in the world of business for the immigrant.

It is a quagmire for an immigrant who is unable to secure proper housing in the States. Being unable to converse and speak in English places the immigrant in a disadvantageous position. An example is from Utah, a group of refugees known as Karen from Myanmar was unknowingly forced to stay in apartments that had bedbug infestation (Nunez, 2014). The landlords would unscrupulously force the tenants to remit an exorbitant sum to have the buggers eradicated. At the same time, the landlord would threaten to kick out the immigrant from his house unless they (the immigrant) pays some additional fees. It is an apparent scam, and the immigrant is forced to comply with such ruthless measures as opposed to if they (the immigrants ) would have been conversant in English and then be able to read, understand and interpret the law for themselves.

Besides, safe houses and affordable regions are expensive to come by in America. It then becomes a task for an immigrant family to seek a better life in America. Most families are forced to hurl and live together to save on several costs. Thus, the environment created becomes stressful, not conducive to simple life choices such as studying or resting and too noisy (Nunez, 2014). The aspect of the language barrier is once again in the play as to how will the immigrant be able to secure well-paying jobs to have improved lifestyles while they cannot communicate?

Being unable to converse in the English language has also seen a majority of Mexican immigrants unable to access services such as legal representation and medical (Nunez, 2014). The Mexican will be afraid of being discovered as an illegal and will hence refrain from seeking what will help him stay in the country, which is papers and legal representation.

The issue of medical access is an even bigger problem for Mexican immigrants living and working in the US. Firstly, mental health is quite a challenge for them. Since most of them are illegally positioned in the country, when vices such as rape, torture, and violence are meted out, they tend to keep silent about it (Nunez, 2014). It is quite a depressing issue knowing that a human being is supposedly being mistreated. Yet, he or she cannot take the necessary steps of reporting the abuse for fear of facing deportation or jail term.

Secondly, the issue of mental health is a taboo in the Mexican culture and thus creates a huge barrier for those in dire need of such services. It is believed to be a vice and, therefore, most dare not be viewed differently by their community; thus, they keep such issues to themselves. Also, not being able to converse in English makes it difficult for the immigrant to seek help from an American physician. In some severe cases, doctors have been known to misdiagnose a patient's illness due to the language barrier (Nunez, 2014).

Transportation is another obstacle that immigrants who cannot converse in English face. Obtaining a driver's license, for instance, becomes problematic for several reasons. Among these is the issue of language as a translator is needed most of the time. This translator has to be conversant in the English language, and they prove difficult to get (Nunez, 2014). Besides, the immigrant who is looking to work as a driver must have some verbal skills in the English language for him or her to pass the English written examination.

However, at times, some families will be able to acquire a car in which they will then have to share amongst themselves. It poses quite a challenge as this same vehicle is expected to bring kids to and get them from school. The same car is also being used to take the adults to and from their working stations. Besides, the Mexican culture gives preference to the male adult. The females are then left to fend for themselves in terms of transportation (Nunez, 2014). The females' then hitch-hike rides from co-workers or friends. All in all, having many people depending on a single mode of transportation is quite hectic as commitments such as medical appointment s and attending ESL classes become a real issue.

One might then question as to why the use of public transportation does not come to play. In Utah, a particular fellow shares a story of how one immigrant lady hailing from one of the remotest parts of Mexico faced a public transportation incident due to the limited English. After receiving assistance to reach her place of work at IRC, the American friend thought then the lass would be in a good position of using the public means all by herself (Nunez, 2014). To his horror, the following week, he receives a phone call from the lady who is at this point sounding terrified and in tears. It turns out that the Mexican lady was not familiar with the American roads and did not know the rules of the road and also could not read them.

As a consequence, she nearly gets run over by numerous motorists as she is trying to cross the roads illegally. On her way to IRC, she gets on the wrong buses until she finally finds the right one but is still confused as to which was the correct stop for her. Thus the above incident shows how transportation poses a threat to immigrants who have little or grasp of the English language.

Culture is another facet that poses a challenge for the Mexican immigrant that cannot converse in English. Culture and language are two forces that go hand in hand. It is quite natural for one to influence the other and vice-versa. In a separate inci...

Cite this page

Essay Example on Mexican Immigrants in US: 11.6M in 2017, 25% in 2020. (2023, May 23). Retrieved from

Free essays can be submitted by anyone,

so we do not vouch for their quality

Want a quality guarantee?
Order from one of our vetted writers instead

If you are the original author of this essay and no longer wish to have it published on the ProEssays website, please click below to request its removal:

didn't find image

Liked this essay sample but need an original one?

Hire a professional with VAST experience and 25% off!

24/7 online support

NO plagiarism