United States

Populism in the West: Alive and Kickin'

March 3, 2017

It has been a while since a strikingly populist candidate has been a major contender in a  presidential election in the United States. Many think of William Jennings Bryan, the three-time nominee of the democratic party at the end of the 1800s, as one of the only other strongly populist presidential candidates in American history (Ramone, 2010). President Trump’s campaign can fairly be described as populist through his rhetoric against the elites on Capitol Hill, his appeal to working class voters, and most importantly his outsider status as a non-politician.

Dominicans in the Dugout: Latin America’s Role in American Baseball

January 10, 2017

When one thinks of sports in Latin America, soccer normally comes to mind, with fans going crazy. But another sport dominates in certain countries: baseball. In the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, and Cuba, among others, baseball is extremely popular. So popular, in fact, that many beisbolistas from these countries have come to play in U.S. Major League Baseball. There is a lot of history behind this modern trend.

Nicaraguan Democracy: Successes & Challenges

December 29, 2016

Nicaragua held its presidential elections last week, and current president Daniel Ortega was elected unanimously for the fourth time, garnering 72% of votes with his wife, Rosario Murillo, as his running mate (Wroughton & Pretel, 2016). The next closest competitor, center-right candidate Maximino Rodriguez, only managed to amass 14.2% of the vote (BBC, 2016). This was no surprise, as in previous months, the courts blocked the main opposition coalition from participating in the election. Mr.

¿Estás ready?: A look at "Spanglish" in the United States

December 15, 2016

Most Americans have heard of the term “Spanglish,” whether by the film bearing the same title from 2004, or the experience of hearing someone mix Spanish and English in a sentence. But what is Spanglish? Is it another language? And who is speaking it, and in what settings? What is the prevalence of Spanglish in the United States, and what role will it have for a country whose largest minority is Latinos (16.3 percent based on the most recent census)? (Ennis, Ríos-Vargas, & Albert, 2011)

Obama’s Policy Directive on Cuba: Changing the Status Quo?

November 9, 2016

On October 14th, President Obama utilized his executive powers to issue a new directive on the United States’ relationship with Cuba. The directive dictates new rules that cover a wide range of areas, from supporting medical-related business projects to reinstating normal limits on importing Cuban products for personal use.

Acclimation of Wealthy Mexicans to U.S.

October 20, 2016

When one considers Mexican immigration to the U.S., many envision groups of poor families sluggishly yet relentlessly crossing numerous boundaries in order to reach the land presumed to abound with opportunities. However, in some cases, the families that cross the U.S./Mexican border are not impoverished but affluent, using the resources they have to escape the violence that continually looms over them.

Over a Decade of US Covert Action in Colombia

October 20, 2016

For the last 50 years, Colombia’s most prominent guerrilla group, the FARC or Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, have fought violently for land reform and justice for the poor. Formed in 1964, the Marxist peasant movement has used violence to bring attention to their cause, which has mostly been funded by the lucrative drug trade. However, over the last year in Havana, Cuba, negotiators from both the FARC and the Colombian government have been meeting in an effort to end the 50-year war.

Mexico Finds Itself In the Middle of the Immigration Scandal

October 13, 2016

Recently, a group of seven cuban immigrants found themselves on the coast of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula.1 This group of seven was attempting to traverse the 90-mile stretch of ocean from Cuba to Florida, but instead ended up in Mexico. Due to this longer than expected journey, two died, while the rest were in critical condition upon rescue by the Mexican Navy who found them off the coast of the peninsula. After recovery, the Cubans were deported back to Cuba, while their hopes of making it to the United States remain unfulfilled.

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