Immigration has become a hot topic under the current presidential administration of the United States. Swift changes in our nation’s immigration policies have resulted in high amounts of media attention regarding immigration and the immigrant experience. However, the immigrant narrative displayed by major media publications seems to be dominated by the stories of brown Latinx immigrants from Central and Latin America. While this narrative serves as representation for the majority of the United States’ Latinx immigrant population, it severely neglects and underrepresents the experiences of black immigrants. According to the Pew Research Center, there are approximately 4.2 million black-identifying immigrants in the United States, and this population is steadily increasing. These immigrants often migrate from the Caribbean and Africa.Despite the growing presence of black immigrants in the United States, their underrepresentation in the media has remained the same and the lack of media representation for these immigrant groups has had lasting effects on black immigrant youth.
For years, African Americans have struggled with finding sufficient representation in the media. We’ve spent so long fighting that whenever we do have a moment where a TV show or film has a primarily black cast, we celebrate. We tend to become so captivated by our sense of representation that we don’t realize how poorly represented black people still are.