Similarity: Both African and Mexican Americans had served in World War II
Differences: African Americans were initially put into non-combatant units
Similarity: Mostly males had served for both African Americans and Mexican Americans
Differences: 1941- 500,000 Latinos and 4,000 African Americans had served 1945- 1.2 million African Americans served
Similarity: Served in the Air Force
Differences: Latina Women served while African American women did not
Similarity: Both had served a lot in the war and were discriminated again when they had gotten back home
How were they treated?
African Americans: The growth of the African American population grew heavily during the war. Although they had served bravely in the war initially they were not allowed in to the draft. They were still segregated against and were not placed in combat units until 1945. The National WWII honors the African Americans that served during the war.
Mexican Americans: While they still served in the war the Mexican youths were being discriminated against on the main land. This is seen by the Zoot Suit riots in 1943 where navy men had attacked a number of Mexican teens because of their suits being unpatriotic. They were still considered heroes but after the war they went back to being segregated and discriminated.
How did they respond to such treatment?
African Americans: African American Leaders had created a campaign called "Double V". They wanted to show they had stopped the victory overseas and the end to the heavy racism they experienced on the mainland.
Mexican Americans: They felt that they had earned their equal rights after the war but that was not the case. Dr.Hector had created the American G.I. Forum which fights for Latinos health care rights.
Did they contribute anything to the cause of WWII?
African Americans: During the start of the war in 1941, only 4,000 African Americans had served in the war but by 1945, that number went up to 1.2 million. They served on the front lines in Europe and the Pacific.
Mexican Americans: Approximately 500,000 Latinos had served in the war by 1941. Mexican women had even served in the war and helped with their bilingualism. The bracero program was opened to allow more Latinos to help work for the war effort.
What is you analysis? Opinion? Reaction to the actions taken by each community?
My partner and I both believe that African Americans and Mexican Americans contributed to the war. The Mexican Americans were cheated out of their rights when they got home. African Americans had made a statement when they were at war.