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Sociology: Anti-Immigration Policies
-California Proposition 227 and Proposition 187-
The purpose of this paper is to research Anti-immigration policies in the United States and to further discuss California's Propositions 227 and 187 and in the critique of the literature to compare and contrast these policies while at the same time to interject originally and critical thinking from the perspective of underlying assumptions, potential weaknesses in the argument of methodological approach and further to analyze their potential value in really grasping an understanding in the immigration issue as to "second generation."
Early roots in anti-immigration sentiment were expressed in the two-dollar a head tax of immigrants in 1903 and in 1997 moving upward to four-dollars a head. "Anti-immigrant sentiment is a result of ignorance of the value of immigrants throughout the history of the United States," pointed our Michael Lin, National President of the Organization of Chinese-Americans (OCA)
During the year of 1912 the anti-immigrations heated up their attack with the assistance of the Immigration Restriction League and by 1917 the broke down the defense of the pro-immigration groups and within the immigration pact of that year the head tax was doubled to eight-dollar a head and made instituted as code law the Dillingham Commission recommendation for a literacy tests in making a determination the eligibility of the individual in receiving entry into the United States. The Anarchist Actof 1918 set out quotas on immigrant numbers reducing them to 2% of the nationality's foreign born population in the 1890 Census. The enacted legislation that was in power within the United States between 1917 and 1926 effectively ended "unrestricted immigration. In the past recent years the number of immigrants entering the United States has reached an unbelievable proportion. The total number of immigrants entering the United States in fiscal year 2002 was 1,063,732 for 2002 with a slightly larger number entering the United States in 2001 in the number of, 1,064,318 and for the year 2000 the number of immigrants entering the United States was the total of 849,807. California had more immigrants for each of these years than did any other state. The total number of immigrants that entered the United States between 1820 and 2002 was 68,217,481.
II. The Possible Burden of Immigrants:
Many individuals hold the belief that the immigrants place an undue burden on the United States by heavy utilization of the welfare services. California Proposition 227 or the Indian Languages Act was signed on October 30, 1990 by President George Bush as Title I of Public Law 101-477.1 The cornerstone of this act is the principal that the Native Americans are of a unique and different heritage and that the preservation of the culture and the language of the Native American people is a responsibility of the United States for ensuring the survival of this unique heritage dimension of mankind while allowing the Native American in the United States maintain separate identities. Stated in the Act is that:
'Languages are the means of communication for the full range of human experiences and are critical to the survival of cultural and political integrity of any people. . ." Sec. 102 (9)
Further stated within the text of the act is that:
"Language provides a direct and powerful means of promoting international communication by people who share languages." Sec. 102 (10)
The act holds that by encouragement, support and use of Native American languages may be used as a medium of instruction in order to: Ensure Survival of Native American Languages; Educational Opportunity; Increased student success and performance; Increased student awareness and knowledge of the cultural aspects; Increased student and community pride. Within the scope of the Native American Languages Act gives encouragement to parents, educators as well as Native American governing body.
In Section (195) stated is that the President will review the policies in one year and at that time will recommend any necessary changes of Federal law that have occurred or need to occur to bring the Federal Laws back into compliance.
II. Proposition 187:
This 1994 law has been referred to as a 'radical law" that was implemented to prevent illegal immigration. This law passed with 59% of the vote and was instituted as a law the next day. The expressed purpose in this Proposition was for the provision of cooperation between states and local agencies in the establishment of a system requiring notification "by and between" all agencies focused toward prevention of aliens in the United States having receipt of benefits or public services in the State of California. (Prop 187 Sec. 1)
Under Proposition 187 the California law enforcement, social services, healthcare and public personnel to: Make verification immigration status of individuals they come in contact with, Notify specific individuals of their immigration status, Report those individuals to state and federal offices, Deny those individuals social services, healthcare and education.
Proposition 187 was challenged five (5) separate times but all those cases were joined into a class action suit in the United States District Court of California with a preliminary injunction being granted to the Plaintiff in the first case of December 14, 1994. The League of united Latino Citizens (LULAC)
and other original Plaintiffs fought the summary judgment in May 1995 and in November 1995, District Judge states that concurrence was granted in part and denied in part. In 1998 a Federal District Judge ruled that the primary provisions of the law were unconstitutional for two stated reasons as follows:
1. The law interfered with the exclusive jurisdiction and control of the federal court in relation to immigration law and;
2. The Supreme Court case holding was in that a state cannot deny a public education to illegal immigrant children. "
III. The Immigrant Problem:
There has existed as a generally held opinion among American citizens that the immigrants attempt to move right into the best areas of industry and as well into the areas of higher income where the payments from welfare benefits are optional. The five countries from which immigrants first came were as follows:
Vietnam; and Cuba
Studies performed in the early part of the 1990's show that the immigrants are over-represented in the system. The reason for over representation is the increase in relative elements of immigration population. "Anti-immigrant sentiment is a result of ignorance of the value of immigrants throughout the history of the United States," pointed our Michael Lin, National President of the Organization of Chinese-Americans.
IV. Anti-immigration: Reason & Rhyme
The policy changes toward immigration swing broadly from first one side to the polar opposite side in the rapidly changing world of today. From the conservative point-of-view then this country never was intended to be the indiscriminate dumping place of humanity containing the wretched flaws indiscriminately hoisted upon this country that came together through the blood, sweat and tears of the forefathers.
There are approximately eight million individuals who live in the U.S. But do not have legal documents. Each and every year another 250,000 immigrants either stay past the date on their visa or simply enter into the U.S. In an illegal manner. According to Daniel Griswold, Researcher at the Cato Institute Center for Trade Policy Studies the growing demand for low-skill labor in the U.S. against the backdrop of a rapid decline of available workers has created a problem that no immigration law in the U.S. presents a proper venue for low-skill workers entrance into the country in order to fill those demands. Resulting is "an illegal flow of workers characterized by more permanent and less circular migration, smuggling, document fraud, deaths at the border, artificially depressed wages, and threats to civil liberties. Table 1.0
Chart based on Bureau of Justice Statistics (in millions)
Griswold believes that legalization of migration of Mexicans would in one with one quick stroke open up the underground market and give producers in the American economic sectors an opportunity to employ the workers needed for their companies to expand and become prosperous raising wages and conditions of work for low-skill workers in the millions spurring human capital investment as well as freeing up resources as well as personnel for the war on terror. Immigrants admitted lawfully in the U.S. In 2002 were 1,063,732. Of these 384,427 aliens are presently living out of the country after obtaining immigrant visas through the U.S. State Department and entering the U.S. As lawful and permanent residents.
There has been a backlog at the INS office due to 966,000 cases waiting on a decision. 63% of all immigrants lawfully residing in the U.S. In FY 2002 were sponsored by families while 16% were employment preference admission and 3% were Section 202 & 203 (family sponsored) admittees and finally 142,632 for employment-based immigrants. Only 25,804 of the preferred issue visas are allowed. The Diversity Program have 55,000 visas are allowed. According to the USCIS
report: "Immigration exempt from worldwide numerical limits. Immigration usually totals much more than the annual worldwide limit for preference and diversity immigrants because some major…[continue]
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