Immigration is a contentious issue in the United States of America. Organizations, political systems, and individuals have highly debated the topical issue that is immigration. The federal government has gone further to instruct that no immigrants should be deported or victimized. Emigration is a topic that is inclined to the immigration discourse. People migrate within USA for different reasons. The different reasons include looking for new environments for settlement, family reunions, and economic crises. Fortunately, emigration is not highly debated hence emigrants feel freer to move across USA compared to immigrants. Therefore, the context herein discusses the different opinions presented by different authors pertaining to immigration and emigration leading to a concrete stand on their debate in USA.
Immigrants are considered as detainees awaiting deportation. This is because most immigrants are assumed to be illegally in USA. When asked to produce their documents, many immigrants are not in a position and unfortunately cannot substantiate their claims. Judicial systems in the US have no clear laws on immigration and emigration and as such huge gaps exist leaving behind confusion (Lyon, 1058). Attorneys and families face challenges in getting justice due to the existent loopholes. There is a need to make clear rules on immigration that ensure victimization does not exist. A significant percentage of the immigrant population asserts that authorities threaten and vindicate them, which is unfair. Psychologists argue that harassing immigrants is unfair to human relations because not all immigrants are illegally living in USA. Therefore, there is a need to exercise sobriety to both immigrants and emigrants as working solutions are being deliberated upon.
Arguably, immigration separates people form their families, cultures and lifestyles. When immigrants enter US, they lead new lives; this brings them closer to their families. Harassment and unlawful arrests lead to the denial of one’s culture, lifestyle, and access to family. This is unfortunate since people ought to understand each other but not vindicate one another. The issue of immigration has been heavily debated in US leaving many people psychologically disturbed. Some are stressed about their fate regarding deportation. Assimilation of immigrants into the existing systems rather than preying on their vulnerability is of the essence as it will foster national unity and constructive societies void of hate or discrimination.
Policy makers and the elite rarely comment on immigration since it is a sensitive issue that requires caution in its approach. Reckless commenting on immigration might cause deep divisions and as such many people leave the matter to the Congress and States. Notably, there has been change in the perspective that immigration has had in USA for the past thirty years. However much the nation seems divided, people are connected by politics, welfare and economics. Therefore, immigration caused significant changes which include the transitioning of the US economy from colonial to agricultural. The economy then changed from agricultural to manufacturing due to the highly-embraced industrial revolution. Now, USA has a dominant Knowledge based economy where market forces are studied for necessary readjustments for those in the country’s financial sector.
Regions such as Fremont Nebraska affirm the changes mentioned above as pertains to immigrants. Initially, immigrants were welcomed cordially as there were believed to bring new skills, talent and values that would collectively benefits the society. When colonization ended, immigrants in USA were specifically concerned with making their livelihood. Most immigrants were laborers working on plantations. They provided cheap labor to the people there and continually adapted to economy changes. During the industrial revolution, many immigrants were employed in the manufacturing companies. “People in Fremont Nebraska started viewing immigrants as people who were out to exploit their resources and grab all jobs” (Roberts). Contentions gradually grew and manifested when the ordinance policy was the main talk in the neighborhoods. Immigrants such as the Latinos were considered outcasts of the society. Tension levels were high.
The Immigration and Naturalization Act helps determine which factors will enable an immigrant enter US while giving conditions that might lead to deportation if an immigrant. The policy is contentious despite the fact that the Congress enacted it. It requires immigrants enter USA on family grounds, skill, talent, protection and refugees programs. Immigration on the grounds of family requires a foreign individual to have family affiliations to a citizen of USA (American Immigration Council). When such an immigrant visits his or her relatives, it will be considered a family reunion. .
The port of New York was an important entry port and facilitated the entry of over five million Irish nationals. They finally reached America to look for jobs, to own land and to have a comfortable life. Further still, the economic hurdle was not the only reason why the Irish nationals migrated. The soils of Ireland were affected by fungus and growing of the Irish potato was no more (Gilder Lehrman Institute). That subjected the Irish nationals to hunger as they would grow no crops. The contingency plan was to head to America where there were good soils, and they would farm their food.
The Chinese nationals, on the other hand, had gone through an invasion by the British. The British destabilized their economy through heavy taxes on peasant farmers. They further forced the opening of China’s economic ports to foreign countries. The British would take all the revenue. The Chinese were left jobless and helpless as the British had taken control of their country and economic states. According to Robert Whyte, the Chinese nationals felt they were treated unfairly, and they needed to get out of such a situation as they termed the British rule as oppressive (Betts, 218). The taxes were hefty, and the peasants were nowhere near close to affording the rates. America would be the next stop for the Chinese people. Robert Whyte was among the Immigrants on transit who felt that the British rule was harsh on the Irish nationals. The irony bit of it is that he was still travelling to British North America where he would still find the British. The British continued to act oppress the immigrants. A law was passed that hiked the fare to 7 pounds. The immigrants could not afford the fare hence would go to ports such as Liverpool where the law known as the Passenger Act had not been effected (Warren and Warren). The Immigrants could be overcrowded in ships which were known as “coffin ships” where some of them died on the way. It was thus evident that the British were oppressive. The Immigrants found it exciting moving to America as new opportunities were available that could change their lives for the better.
Essentially, talent and skill define employment attributes of an immigrant; he or she can either be self-employed or employed in a private or public US organization. Citizens with adept talent, prowess and skill are granted US entry. This happens after the talents and skill usability and essence towards the US economy have been assessed and confirmed. Protection of immigration grants people unable to return to their homes due to reasons such as on-going conflicts, national disasters, and political exile opportunities to settle in USA. Surveys have aptly been done on the execution of the several provisions handled by the US government. The US department of State and Bureau of Consular Affairs has played a large role as pertains to implementing the policy.
A survey by Rasmussen Reports holds that 55% of the voter population opines that the immigration policy is rife with loopholes. Further, the voters stress that the government is unwilling to stop the illegal entry of immigrants in US. The voter population is in ire as people continue to feel threatened by foreigners settling in their country. This is public opinion largely influenced by the political elite, media and conspiracy theories amongst US citizens (Rasmussen Reports). The local and international media regularly portray US as the land assured of opportunities. This woos many people in different parts of the world to travel to US. People ensure they travel to the country in pursuit of opportunities, a better life characterized with an improved livelihood and handsome income. However, majority of the US population feel threatened by new entrants into their country while thinking that they will be denied their job opportunities.
Illegal immigration has developed a negative perspective of Immigration. The government has been unable to regulate illegal entry into US hence defaming legal immigration. This has facilitated the development of proposals by the public and government to fence or build walls across the US borders as is the case with President Trump’s administration, the US-Mexico border wall. Public opinion has spurred negative attribution towards immigration through the applause of deportation (Goo). The media has played a large part in influencing negative public opinion labeling foreign individuals as people who take what rightfully belongs to the US people. Rarely will you find immigrants applauded for their achievements or heroic acts US, this is because the masses are much fed by the press hence a skewed perception of immigrants. Today, there are population shifts where certain races are dominant in some states while different people have chosen to diversify their economic ventures. Some immigrants have started and grown companies that significantly contribute positively to the country’s economy. Time will allow for reconciliation and healing of the US society to accommodate its immigrants without discrimination.
The three principles that are the Duty of Beneficence, Assistance and the Difference principle have one common element. The element is improving the lives of the immigrants who are considered a disadvantaged lot but should be provided necessary resources to eliminate economic inequalities. Although the legal provisions in USA are not clear on matter immigration, there is an evidence of a high advocacy for immigrants’ welfare. If the law has a positive inclination towards the immigration subject then there should be a taskforce that aptly handles immigrants fairly. This is because different immigrants are in the country for different reasons. The reasons might include asylum, looking for a better life, work, promoting talent and skill as well as education. These are sound and reasonable reasons that most immigrants have in the USA, they have their image tainted by the influx of illegal immigrants. Illegal immigrants should however be grilled on their reasons for entering US. People who have a positive effect in USA such as to the economy can be excused from stern treatment that ends up with the deportation of individuals.
Correspondingly, IIRIRA’s provisions are considered oppressive to immigrants. Immigrants are labeled as a threatening, excludable and disposable lot (Appelbaum, Jordan and Ahmed, 198). They are considered threatening because natives think that their opportunities will be taken away from them especially due to the immigrants’ availability for cheap labor. Furthermore, the IIRIRA provision finds immigrants excludable meaning they can be left out on matters pertaining to the nation and its dynamics. Disposability ascribes to deportation which threatens the lives of immigrants and ensures if found not legally worthy to live in the USA an immigrant will be deported (Arbona and Consuelo). Additionally, USA does not limit the settling of its citizens in different parts of the country but has an exception. The exception is a criminal record that clearly states an individual is grounded and not expected to move from their assigned area of residence. In fact, some US citizens have houses in different states which mean emigration is allowed (Caleb, 823). Therefore, if an individual identifies sprouting opportunities in certain vicinity he or she is free to move and settle there.
Conclusively, different authors on the topic of immigration and emigration argue that immigrants should be fairly treated to foster human relations. How a country treats immigrants might be proportional to how an employee will be treated. This is an unfair construct that should be eliminated at all costs. Emigration should be promoted to ensure interplay of the many cultures in USA, this will foster notions cohesion. Emigration should be treated as a form of survival in new grounds. Evidently, different scholars see the need to exercise caution in the handling of immigrants. This is because immigrants have families and it is unfair to detach parents from their children unless it is a crime. Fortunately, immigration is not a crime but has largely been stereotyped and affected many people. History of the different developments of immigration in USA has simply made it easier to understand its different underlying elements. Deductively, immigration should be handled with utmost sobriety and the laws should further be repealed or improved to fix the existent gaps with exclusion for illegal immigrants. This context agrees with the assertions of the authors that immigration is a necessary construct that can be a lucrative enterprise and aptly serve the US population.
- American Immigration Council. American Immigration Coucil. 12 August 2013. <http://www.immigrationpolicy.org/just-facts/how-united-states-immigration-system-works-fact-sheet>.
- Appelbaum, Adina, et al. “The Human Cost of IIRIRA-Stories from Individuals Imapacted by the Immigration Detention System.” Journal of Migration and Human Security (2017): 196-216.
- Arbona, S and F Consuelo. Acculturative Stress among Documented and Undocumented Latino Immigrants in the United States. New York : HrperCollins, 2017.
- Betts, Alexander. “”Towards a “Soft Law” Framework for the Protection of Vulnerable Irregular Migrants.”.” International Jourbal of Refugee Law (2010): 209-236.
- Caleb, Young. “Justice in Labor Immigration Policy.” Social Theory and Practice (2016): 817-844.
- Goo, Sera Kehalauni. What Americans want to do about illegal immigration. 14 August 2015. <http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2015/08/24/what-americans-want-to-do-about-illegal-immigration/>.
- Hennessy-Fiske, Molly. Nebraska town’s anti-immigration rule stands, but furor persists. 6 May 2014. <http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-nebraska-immigrants-20140507-story.html>.
- Lyon, Ice V. “Immigration Law-Right to Counsel-California District Court Finds Due Process May Include Right of Access to Counsel for Detained Non citizens.” (2017): 1056-1063.
- Rasmussen Reports. Immigration Update. 9 November 2015. <http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/current_events/immigration/immigration_update>.
- Roberts, Dave. Local immigration law expert meets with Trump. 20 November 2016. <http://www.ketv.com/article/local-immigration-law-expert-meets-with-trump/8346478>.
- Warren, Robert and John Robert Warren. “Towards a “Soft Law” Framework for the Protection of Vulnerable Irregular Migrants.”. Washington : HarperCollins, 2010.