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Cubans in America

by Evan Graves

If you take a vacation to Florida and travel through the city of Miami, you will notice an increasing number of Hispanics. Among theses nationalities that are populating the city are Cubans. America is in fact a country of immigrants. Every decade the percentage of immigrants from a particular area change due to many reasons, some reasons are from within America and some are in the land from which the immigrants come. These trends in immigration continue through history, and presently Hispanic immigration is on the rise. And only time will tell what is in store next for America with the start of the 21st century.

One major point in Cuban immigration was in 1966 when President Jimmy Carter allowed for Cuban refugees to come to the United States. Fidel Castro came to power in 1959 causing many Cubans to flee to the U.S.From 1951 to 1960, 78,900 Cubans came and in the next decade, between 1961and 1970 the numbers of Cubans immigrants more than doubled to 208,500. In 1971 to 1979 the numbers increased again to 249,700 immigrants. The next year, in 1980, Fidel Castro allowed Cubans to leave if they went out of Mariel Harbor directly to the U.S. In the five-month period that this was allowed, from the end of April to September, 125,000 Cubans arrived in the U.S. There is suspicion that the exodus was a way for Castro to get rid of Cuba's criminals and undesirables. Ten years later, in 1990, the number of refugees and asylees from Cuba under the Refugee act of 1966 was at 5,730. The number increased each year after to 20,131 refugees and asylees in 1997. The same year the number of immigrants by country of birth was a higher figure at 33,600 immigrants. In 1996 there were26,466 Cuban immigrants to the United States. Of that group an outstanding 22,217 resided in the state of Florida. The next state where a majority went was New Jersey with 1,593 Cuban immigrants. Florida is only ninety miles from the Cuban coast, and there Cubans can feel as if they fit in better because of the already high population in the state. Within the first wave of Cuban's that arrived in the United States were many contributing members to society. Miami has banks, restaurants, construction companies, and trading houses run by this group of upper-class people who are Latino immigrants. The second wave has allowed reputation. In part this is because Castro tried to push the corrupt people from his country. 2,000 of the 125,000 refugees that landed in 1980 committed crimes in the United States, and they severed time in federal prisons. The immigrants are sometimes deported back to Cuba.Such incidents cause problems between Cuba and the U.S.

From the statistics it seems that Hispanics including Cubans will continue to fill American communities and cities, especially in New Jersey and Florida. Already this is causing some unrest with the language barrier, employment, and other personal and public situations. Although this may seem like a new problem, it is not. History is repeating itself, with some turbulence this quandary will be worked out in to the melting pot of American society.