The history of US-Mexico relations has continued to have many challenges since the two countries attained their independence from the British colony. The land issue has been one of the major issues affecting the two countries since independence. The land issues have been prominent since they have led the two countries into war thus increasing hatred among them. Secondly, racism and ethnicity has also been a problem affecting the relationships of the two countries. Moreover, economic and social disparities are also main challenges affecting the relations of the two nations. Political stereotyping and increased discrimination has also been a challenge that has affected the relations between the two countries. Ultimately, segregation issues have also affected the two countries.
The issues of land have continued to affect the US-Mexican relations. The land issues aggravated in 1846 leading to US-Mexican war that lasted for two years. The aftermath of the war in 1848 led to Americans wining the war thus taking the northern part of Mexico. Americans believed that they had a God given right to expand their territories and that Mexico was one of the lands they would occupy. This led to the idea of Manifest Destiny in which Mexico would be occupied by Americans. The aftermath of the war led to hatred between Mexicans who lived in the US and the natives. The annexation of independence of Texas by the US also increased conflicts and tensions between the two countries thus leading to war at the end. However, the issues of land between the two countries were settled in 1853 after the Gadsden Purchase of the American borders. The Gadsden Purchase was a treaty between the US and Mexico. In the treaty, United States bought part of Texas, Nevada and California from Mexicans thus ending the land conflict (Chasteen and James 56).
RACISM AND ETHNICITY:
Political debates against Mexican Americans have continued to increase over the years. The two countries have continued to blame each other due to issues of racism and ethnicity. Prejudice based on race, color and ethnic background has grown in the US. This has prevented many Mexicans from getting employment and enjoying equal rights as compared to US citizens. Before 1848, many people from Mexican origin did not have the right to vote as compared to their counterparts. In addition, the people of Mexico could not legally intermarry with the US citizens. Moreover, there was increase of discrimination based on the origin as many Mexicans did not enjoy equal rights as compared to the citizens of the United States. In addition, the United States government had also introduced a white scheme based salary where the Mexicans could be paid small wages as compared to the other natives (Lorey 76).
Due to the increased conflicts between the two countries, the US has taken advantage of the poor economic situation of Mexico to its own benefit. Many employers in the US have continued to enjoy cheap labor from Mexico. The issue of immigration in the two countries has heightened over the years. A study carried out in 2006 shows that employers take advantage of the Mexicans because they know that they will be deported upon questioning the authorities. Majority of the employed people are offered meager wages and enumeration that cannot even support their livelihood. The ethnic profiling and cheap labor has been a major issue to be addressed by the two countries. Many Mexicans have also been reported to be employed in cheap labor services despite their educational achievement and status quo (Vargas 135).
The US government has continued to exploit Mexico’s oil without compensating the workers and the government with equal payments. Despite exploitation of their national resources, the US does not give attention to the problems affecting the people of Mexico. In retaliations, the people of Mexico have continued to take positions of the United States interest even in international bodies. For instance, Mexico refused to support the US in its invasion in Cuba, Venezuela and even Iraq. This widened the animosity between the two countries. Another economic issue that has grown between the two countries is the issue of drug trafficking in Mexico. The government of the US has tightened immigration policies with an aim of preventing drugs from entering the US territory. However, the people of Mexico have taken this negatively since they think it is discriminatory for their trade relations with the US (Gutiérrez 94).
Issues of social status and assimilation have continued to affect the relationshops between the two countries. Racial discrimination has been the greatest social challenge affecting the relationships between the two countries. Over the years, Mexican Americans have been discriminated against their race and ethnic backgrounds. In 1948 many Mexicans were lynched due to their ethnic backgrounds. Although the US government discriminates Mexicans due to their illegal migration to the United States, there has been massive deportation of the all migrants thus heightening tensions between the two countries. The worst cases of discrimination occurred in 1940s when most of them were denied access to basic commodities including food and medication thus opting to return back to their countries.
The people of Mullato and Mestizo descent has faced increased levels of discrimination and prejudice even in schools. There has been formation of white supremacists groups such as the Klux Klan Klux in the US that have public aired issues of discrimination. Assimilation of the Mexicans into the United States has become a difficult affair due to increased levels of segregation in schools and social places. Since Mexicans especially asylum seekers received free social services from the government, it is clear that many people do not want to associate with them. Although the racist and stereotype has continued to rise, they should be stopped before the problem becomes a humanitarian issue (Lorey 56).
In summation, there are many problems affecting the history of US-Mexico relations. The main problem that has affected the relationships of the two countries is the land issue. Since the acquisition of the northern part of Mexican territory, there has been growing hatred between the two countries. Moreover, racism has continued to affect the relationships between the two countries. For many decades Mexican Americans were considered outsiders in the US territory and were not entitled to land ownership. Moreover, before 1980 Mexicans were not legally accepted to marry people from the US. The political class of the United States has continued to pass laws that discriminate Mexicans based on culture, race and ethnicity. There are many issues of segregation between the two countries that has continued to widen the gap between Mexican Americans and the US citizens. Although the relationships between the two countries have continued to improve over time, much needs to be done to improve peaceful coexistence.