One Person's Opinion

Implications of the growth of the national Latino population

By Armando F. Sanchez
Published on LatinoLA: February 12, 2003

One Person's Opinion

So what are some of the implications of recent statistical information showing the rapid growth of the nation's Latino population?

Several years ago my family and I were traveling by road to visit Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. On our way there my wife and I struck a conversation and we began to wonder what we could do, other than teaching, in those isolated remote places that were between here in Los Angeles and there.

Along the way we stopped in resort locations like Tahoe, Aspen and Vail. We also visited Jackson Hole in Wyoming. It's very beautiful country but also isolated. Many small towns we passed by were dilapidated and many downtown buildings were empty.

As we kept traveling I kept asking myself what kind of opportunity could I find in such remote places as those towns and one day when we were in Colorado the answer came to me. I would put up a radio station! The more I thought about it the more I liked the idea. I would put up a Spanish radio station and perhaps also start a newspaper in Spanish.

Why would I do that you may ask?

It was quite simple. Everywhere I went in these major ski resorts there were a lot of Spanish-speaking persons working there and no services were offered for them. I informally interviewed some persons and they were all shared and wished they had local media and professional services available to help them.

Now that I see this kind of statistical information I begin to once again see the need for creating new local television and radio stations, local publications and professional services that will be needed for the emerging and expanding Latino populations in locations like Nevada, North Carolina, Georgia or even Minnesota. I would think it is easy to give out a daily weather report in Minnesota ???Mucho, mucho frio!!!

I interpreted this statistical information to be a wake up call to those seeking new opportunities. It is likely that the current public and private agencies are unable to deal with the emerging Latino population.

Pessimists will claim that these new immigrants will stretch and drain already very limit community and social resources. From my own travels and observation many of these towns, except for the notable major recreational resorts, they seemed like they were already half empty and close to becoming ghost towns. Being that I am an optimist at heart and I normally see the glass half full I see new and vibrant blood going into previously dying communities and I see an upturn in the vitality of existing and new businesses and communities. One major change I also see them doing is line dancing to cumbias and cha-cha-chas."

There is opportunity "up in them there hills."

Copyright ? 2003 Armando F. S?nchez

About Armando F. Sanchez:
Originally published in the LSAC eNewsletter. To learn about becoming a LSAC member contact us at

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