What exactly is a "Hispanic?" Is it a P.C. term for a Mexican, or a catchall term for people of Spanish/American descent? This question arose last night
"Hispanic" takes different definitions depending where in the world the term is used. For the US:
-Hispanic is NOT a race (the term was first used in a census in 1970, criteria was changed in 1980, and 1990, and 2000 census, and was omitted from options in 2010.)
-Hispanic IS interchangeable with "Latino"
The U.S. Office of Management and Budget currently defines "Hispanic or Latino" as "a person of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, South or Central American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race".
In general it encompasses people whose primary ethnic descent is from a country that was once under the control of the Spanish Empire (1492-1898)
Paraphrased from Wikipedia entry "Hispanic"