Professor: Latino immigration a complex issue.

David Hernández

Immigration is a complex and crucial issue for Latin Americans living in the United States, argues David Hernández, an assistant professor of Spanish and Latina/o & Latin American studies at Mount Holyoke College, in a letter published in The New York Times January 6.

Hernández’s letter responds to an opinion editorial by Robert Suro from the University of Southern California, who contends that Latinos are losing political ground by focusing solely on immigration.

“Immigration is far from a single issue,” Hernández wrote. “It’s central to economic policy, national security and humanitarian relief. It’s linked to health care, education and the reunification of families. Latinos know this complexity and thus engage variously with the issues of immigration.”

Hernández also noted that at least nine million families in the United States today include at least one immigrant and one citizen. He said immigration is an extremely important issue in the Latino community.

“Supporting immigrants is not folly, but directly in many of our interests,” Hernández wrote. “To not talk about immigration is to stick one’s head in the sand.”

Read David Hernández’s letter to the editor.