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History of Immigration Policies Concerning Race and Citizenship

2019-01-25 来源: 51due教员组 类别: Paper范文

下面为大家整理一篇优秀的paper代写范文- History of Immigration Policies Concerning Race and Citizenship,供大家参考学习,这篇论文讨论了移民政策。1924年,美国的《移民法》明确了国家选择制度,并对移民数量进行了限制。但数量上的限制导致了移民的大量非法入境以及相应的非法移民问题。美国对待移民的出发点始终是以保护国家和公民的利益。根据利益和需要,调整移民政策。美国以满足国家的生存和发展需要为目标,移民追求自身的生存和发展需要,两者之间存在着一种永久的合作和博弈对抗关系。

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Immigration policies in 1776-1965

With the foundation of the United States of America in 1776, the country initiated a one hundred-year open immigration hardly without any strict immigrants selection apparatus because US economic policies protected itself from the influence of European goods, stimulating much demand for factory labor.

The immigration after Civil War in 1865-1880 declined sharply and while in 1870s, several groups of immigrants such as convicts and prostitutes were to be excluded. Next, firstly based on the racial discrimination, The Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 imposed restrictions on a country’s immigration after taking advantage of and benefiting from Chinese migrant labor for a long period. And in 1917, the “Asiatic barred zone” was then put forward to expand the race restrictions to the whole Asian. Also in this period, another federal law excluding the African or black immigrants was issued. The Immigration Act of 1924 defined a country selection system and also proposed a numerical restriction for the immigrants. But the numerical restriction leaded to the mass illegal entry of immigrants and the corresponding issues of illegal aliens.

The Depression in the 1930s brought bad impacts to the US economy as well as the immigration policies. There was little immigration in this period and there were about 500,000 Mexican immigrants who were repatriated to their own country even though at least half of them had possessed the status of American citizen (US legal residence, US citizenship or birth in the US), which means the citizenship could not defeat the race (Lopez 27).

The US after the World War II was in need of after war reconstruction, economy development and the corresponding essential productive factors, and thus the Mexican Bracero guest workers were recruited and therefore the number of Mexican immigrants peaked at 455,000 in the mid-1950s (Martins 14).

Immigration policies in 1965-2017

In 1965, the US banned the country selection system, abolished the “Asiatic barred zone” and largely dismantled the racial discrimination in American immigration policies. The Immigration Act of 1990 was a federal law representative of a series of immigration policies taking qualitative factors such as skills and education of immigrants into consideration to attract and recruit more and more high quality labor from global labor market to sustain and motive the domestic economy (Chishti and Stephen 1).

In the first decade of the 21 century, US government has proposed many policies to settle the problem of mass illegal immigrants such as border fencing and protection strategies, mandatory E-Verify system, immigration point system, foreign immigrants working authorization and etc., In 2008, Obama advocated enforcing labor and immigration laws in the workplace to protect all workers including illegal immigrant workers (Martin 20). But the most severe economic recession in 50 years leaded to unemployment including the illegal immigrant workers and the ending of legalizing the illegal immigrants. Even the state and local governments continued to issue the severely restrictive laws to constraint the illegal migration. In 2017, Trump signed the executive order of “Protecting the Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into the United States” and "Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States" to strengthen the strict immigration enforcement to limit the refugees into the US and implement the removal and detention and etc., to secure American public safety.

Overall development path

The U.S. and global economies have experienced several periodic cycles of change. When the U.S. economy needed the development momentum (labor force) to boost the domestic economy, the immigration restrictions would be relaxed and broadened because the foreign immigrants could stimulate the economic vitality and competitiveness. The apparatus of immigration enforcement would be relatively loose. But the domestic economic stagnation or the world economic downturn would encourage the United States to shut out immigration and strengthen the intensity of strict immigration enforcement (Gross).

On the basis of American history of the immigration policies, we can conclude that the American society generally acknowledges that immigrant is an important element of the labor force as well as a productive resource promotes economic growth and social development and is also worried about a series of social problems including population, traffic, crime, civil security and so on brought by immigration (Comedy Partners). From both historically and contemporarily, the government of United States has adjusted the immigration policies, controlled the quantity and quality of immigrants and implemented the selective enforcement of the laws and regulations based on the domestic and international situation and coordinated with the country’s needs including the changing labor demand.

Strict Enforcement on Immigrants Concerning Crime

“Criminal alien” and its enforcement

“Criminal alien” is representative of a tendency being prejudiced by first impressions that the immigrants or non-citizens will be identified as criminals or at least they must be recognized as the dangerous threat for the country and the citizens within the country. And according to this kind of tendency, the law enforcement officers are able to prioritize the investigation, border enforcement, detention, arrest, deportation and other proceedings of the foreign non-citizens or immigrant citizens with even the most normal and minor criminal behavior by using a threat targeting approach.  

“Criminal alien” identity can be in essence deemed as a government tool to regulate and control the immigrants as the more and more severe problems brought by immigration. Maybe initially“criminal alien”aimed at combating illegal immigration, but gradually it was not limited within the range of undocumented, illegal or criminal immigrants. Lawful permanent residents or citizens may be placed in those severe proceedings and threat targeting approach definitely becomes race targeting approach under the guise of securing public safety, deviating from the public perception however.

But “criminal alien”has still been a legalized tool for US government. American laws such as the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act(IIRIRA) in 1996 facilitated the border enforcement, detention and deportation by expanding the grounds of exclusion and deportation, leading mandatory detention for the immigrants and legalizing the state and local enforcement. “Criminal alien” identity and its enforcement became more efficient and convenient, resulting in 88,897 people deported from the United States with over 30,000 were merely for drug problems (Kanstroom 11). And there was a surge in the number of expanded border enforcement because with administrative identity authorization, the enforcement became more discretionary and more rigid.

“Crimmigration” and its enforcement

As “criminal alien” , “crimmigration”is also an interface connecting the criminal justice system with the federal immigration authorities, although which is more in legal sense. “crimmigration”generally refers to crimmigration law and the enforcement system in accordance with the crimmigration law. It is a kind of legal control combining the criminal law and the immigration law together. Practically, when a person is an immigrant and is a non-citizen, then the criminal law will be more applicable other than the immigration law and hence even a minor criminal behavior may lead to severe immigration penalty for him or her. The efficacy of “crimmigration”is limited, but it certainly can at least give some immigrants the warning to take caution and the criminal justice system is expected to serve as an under-resourced federal immigration enforcement regime. However, “crimmigration”is still deeply intertwined with the racial discrimination and race targeting enforcement. Also the rigid system and penalty could scare the immigrants to keep distance with the government and law enforcement officers as much as possible and the uncertainties could make the public safety less achievable.

U.S. Government’s role in the immigration enforcement

“Criminal alien” and “crimmigration” are both typical of racial exclusion in essence and the U.S. government has played an important role in the exclusion’s enforcement. In fact, since the 1800s, the federal government’s sole authority, or “plenary power” over immigration policy making and enforcement has been established (Varsanyi 1). And gradually the federal government’s power has been shifted to some extent to the state and local governments in immigration policy making field. And according to the lines of exclusion such as “criminal alien” and “crimmigration”, the government departments and the personnel have been institutionalized by Congress to faithfully execute the immigration laws and focus on the removable aliens who have the slightest signal of minor crime (Zapotosky). Also the laws enforcement is relatively rigid. For example, the power of government personnel to place the immigrants in the proceedings at the border is too expanded to involve searching for the illegal aliens in houses or cars without warranty (Bolter). Therefore the government is able to take advantage of policy making and laws enforcement to build a race exclusion society.

Immigrants’ reaction to the strict enforcement

The strict enforcement is not so much as the unequal treatment and penalty imposed on the immigrants. But the immigrants often ignore the restrictive policies, making a mutually reinforcing cycle whereby more strict border enforcement further reduces return migration and increases unauthorized immigrants and then calls for more strict enforcement at the national level. At the state level, and the immigrants insist on their residence state and the economic and other factors other than the political factor (strict enforcement) are the decisive factors for them to shape their settlement and residency patterns (Garcia 1).

Conclusion

On the basis of the above analysis, the starting point of how the United States deal with the immigration and the immigrants is always to maximize protecting the interests of the country and the citizens. According to the interests and the needs, the immigration policies are adjusted. When the interests of citizenship are threatened, the criminality is no longer a social phenomenon but a national tool and is taken as the guise to limit immigration. The United States is aiming at satisfying the country’s survival and development needs and the immigrants are in pursuit of their own survival and development needs, and there exist a permanently cooperative and game confrontational relationship between both of them.

Reference

García, Angela S. “Return to sender? A comparative analysis of immigrant communities in ‘attrition through enforcement’ destinations.”  Ethnic and Racial Studies (2012): 1-22. Web. 18 June. 2012.

Bolter, Jessica. “The Evolving and Diversifying Nature of Migration to the U.S.-Mexico Border.”  Migration Information Source (2017): n. pag. Web. 16 Feb, 2017.

Lopez, Ian H. White by Law: The legal Construction of Race. New York: New York University Press, 1996. Print.

Varsanyi, Monica W. “Immigration Policy Activism in U.S. Cities and States: Interdisciplinary Perspectives.” Taking Local Control: Immigration Policy Activism in U.S. Cities and States. Ed. Varsanyi, Monica W. California: Stanford University Press, 2010. 1-27. Print.

Kanstroom, Daniel. Deportation Nation: Outsiders of American History. London: Harvard University Press, 2007. Print.

Martin, Philip. “The United States: The Continuing Immigration Debate.” Controlling Immigration: A Global Perspective. California: Stanford University Press, 2011. 1-36. Print.

Chishti, Muzaffar and Stephen, Yale-Loehr. The Immigration Act of 1990: Unfinished Business a Quarter-Century Later. Washington, DC: Migration Policy Institute, 2016.

Comedy Partners. “The Word - Neutral Man’s Burden.” Online video clip. You Tube. You Tube, 16 July. 2009. Web. 18 March. 2017.

Gross, Daniel A. “The U.S. Government Turned Away Thousands of Jewish Refugees, Fearing That They Were Nazi Spies.” Smithsonian.com. Smithsonian.com., 18 November, 2015. Web. 18 March. 2017.

Zapotosky, Matt. “Justice Department will again use private prisons.” Washingtonpost.com. Washingtonpost.com., 23 February, 2010. Web. 16 March. 2017.

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