This question derived from a scenario involving Hispanic basketball players and students chanting "US":
http://www.debatepolitics.com/breaki...post1060269547 (Racist? Texas high school apologizes for fans' 'USA!' chant after basketball game) (Racist? Texas high school apologizes for fans' 'USA!' chant after basketball game)
What I want to know is whether or not it is racist to insult an ethnicity.
Here's data on both sides of this issue:
It IS racist:
❖ Hispanics form an ethnicity made up of various different races.
❖ Most people use a more generalized, looser definition of racism.
It ISN'T racist:15-II WHAT IS "RACE" DISCRIMINATION?
Title VII prohibits employer actions that discriminate, by motivation or impact, against persons because of race. Title VII does not contain a definition of “race,” nor has the Commission adopted one. For the collection of federal data on race and ethnicity, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has provided the following five racial categories: American Indian or Alaska Native; Asian; Black or African American; Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander; and White; and one ethnicity category, Hispanic or Latino.(12) OMB has made clear that these categories are “social-political constructs . . . and should not be interpreted as being genetic, biological, or anthropological in nature.”(13)
Compliance Manual Section 15: Race and Color Discrimination
❖ Hispanic, in itself, is not a race.
❖ People can undergo Hispanicization, to become Hispanic. This means that being Hispanic is a culture.
Hispanic - Wikipedia, the free encyclopediaHispanicization
Hispanicization is the process by which a place or a person absorbs characteristics of Hispanic society and culture. Modern hispanization of a place, namely in the United States, might be illustrated by Spanish-language media and businesses.
❖ Supposedly, most Hispanics are white.
❖Hispanic - Wikipedia, the free encyclopediaDefinitions in the United States
The term Hispanic, as dominated by the Office of Management and Budget, is used in the United States for people with origins in Spanish-speaking countries, like Mexico, Costa Rica. Hispanic is not a race, as the Chilean Nobel Prize Gabriela Mistral once said, "mi patria es mi lengua" (My fatherland is my language). Latino, from American Spanish, is used in some cases as an abbreviation for latino americano or "Latin American" and tends to be used interchangeably with Hispanic in the United States, despite the fact these two words are not synonyms. The term "Latin America" was used for the first time in 1861/1867, when the French occupied Mexico and wanted to be included in what has been known until then as "América Española" or "Spanish America". 
"The terms "Hispanic" or "Latino" refer to persons who trace their origin or descent to Mexico, Puerto Rico, Cuba, Spanish speaking Central and South America countries, and other Spanish cultures. Origin can be considered as the heritage, nationality group, lineage, or country of the person or the person's parents or ancestors before their arrival in the United States. People who identify their origin as Hispanic or Latino may be of any race."
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". This definition excludes people of Portuguese origins, such as Portuguese Americans or Brazilian Americans. However, they are included in some government agencies' definitions. For example, the U.S. Department of Transportation defines Hispanic to include, "persons of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Dominican, Central or South American, or others Spanish or Portuguese culture or origin, regardless of race."
❖Hispanics: A Culture, Not a RaceNow, repeat after me: "Hispanic is not a race." Disregard nearly every U.S. Government form which asks for race and shake your head in dismay at the cultural ignorance of nearly every writer in practically every newspaper in the United States, yes! the United States, because the term "Hispanic" or the equally misused "Latino" is nowhere used in so many wrong applications as it is in our politically correct, but sometimes culturally incorrect nation. Go ahead, pick any random issue of the Washington Post, or the latest book of essays by the great Camille Paglia or the wording in some of our 50 states' Equal Rights laws. You will also find countless medical surveys or economic studies where "races" are broken into Black, White, Asian and Hispanic; Congressional Black Caucus members complain that U.S. Government policy is different for Cubans because they are "light-skinned Hispanics." The samples go on and on.
For the last time: Hispanicism is NOT a race! Hispanicism is the cultural legacy which sometimes unites nearly every country in the New World south of California into a diverse group of peoples and races joined by a common language. Oh, by the way, I suppose one must throw in Spaniards, although I was shocked and amazed to listen to a San Francisco Mexican-American politician declare a few years ago that " Spaniards were not Hispanic because they were Europeans and white."
❖ If Hispanic is a race, then so is Muslim.
❖ "Racist" is a specific term, else it loses all meaning.
❖Why doesn't the census include Hispanic as a race?
The census does it right! Hispanic is NOT a race. There are many races within the Latino community, including White, Black, Native Indian, and even Asian. Some segments, like the Cuban community, show very few mixed-race individuals. In fact, Cubans exhibit a race discrimination behavior within their community that is similar to that of the general market. Other groups, like Puerto Ricans, are very mixed. Argentineans are mostly White and some Latin American countries, including Mexico, have a strong Native Indian background. For years, however, the U.S. Census considered Hispanic a race. They changed that definition since before the 1970 census; and in 1977 the Office of Management and Budget issued the “Race and Ethnic Standards for Federal Statistics and Administrative Reporting”. They established the U.S. racial classifications to be American Indian, Alaskan Native, Asian or Pacific Islander, Black, and White. They added ethnic classifications of “Hispanic Origin” and “Not of Hispanic Origin”.
Unfortunately, we continue to see the race question in most market research studies and marketers in this country continue to label Hispanic as a race. The misconception that Hispanic is a race is so ingrained in this country that many Hispanics are confused themselves. This creates a big problem in marketing research, because many Latinos would check “Other” if “Hispanic” were not included in the race category. Yet, many Hispanics would check “White” or “Black” and not “Hispanic”, if “Hispanic” was included as a category. A way of avoiding this problem is to divide the question like the census does and to pay close attention to how the questions are worded. A better approach is to not bother asking about race at all.
❖Race and ethnicity in the United States Census - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia2010 Census
The 2010 US Census included changes designed to more clearly distinguish Hispanic ethnicity as not being a race. That included adding the sentence: "For this census, Hispanic origins are not races." Additionally, the Hispanic terms were modified from "Hispanic or Latino" to "Hispanic, Latino or Spanish origin".
Although used in the Census and the American Community Survey, "Some other race" is not an official race, and the Bureau considered eliminating it prior to the 2000 Census. As the 2010 census form did not contain the question titled "Ancestry" found in prior censuses, there were campaigns to get non-Hispanic West Indian Americans, Arab Americans and Iranian Americans to indicate their ethnic or national background through the race question, specifically the "Some other race" category.