While our focus is generally on the Hispanic market, there are various segments that are represented by the “multicultural” label. This includes advertisers, publishers and agencies focused on Hispanic, Asian-American, African-American- and even LGBT.
In the news in the last week alone, there have been some important decisions made by the courts that affect these groups and those working with them.
- Arizona’s SB 1070 had 7 key provisions blocked by a U.S. District judge.
- In California, Proposition 8, which was a voter-approved proposition that defined a marriage as between a man and a woman, was overturned by a U.S. District Court Judge.
- Mexico’s Supreme Court ruled that every state must recognize gay marriages performed in Mexico City.
With an estimated 10.8 million illegal immigrants in this country, the immigration debate is sure to continue. However, one of the biggest debates will be how to apply laws to stem illegal immigration without negatively impacting the remainder of the almost 50 million Hispanics in this country. By the way, it should be noted that not all of the 10.8 million illegal residents in the U.S. are from Mexico or Latin America, as many may think.
The Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law estimates that there are approximately 8.8 million gay, lesbian, and bisexual persons in the U.S. (based on the 2005/2006 American Community Survey, an extension of the U.S. Census). This is another segment of multicultural marketing that is growing, and considering that the Proposition 8 battle in California was the highest-funded campaign ever on any state ballot, with opponents and supporters raising over $80 million, same-sex marriage too will continue to be a hotly debated issue. Yet even a very Catholic country like Mexico has accepted that marriage is a right that is not exclusive to opposite-sex marriage.
While everyone has their own opinion on how they feel about the individual issues and rulings, aside from working with both the supporters and opponents of the various initiatives, most of the agencies and service providers to the advertising industry are not necessarily interested in the politics- just the key facts. There are significant numbers of immigrants (legal AND illegal), citizens of many different backgrounds, and a large LGBT community, which are all increasingly important. As marketers we care about how many there are and how we can reach them- otherwise the court battles are for the politicians.