Defining America Through Immigration Policy / Edition 1

Defining America Through Immigration Policy / Edition 1

4.0 1
by Bill Ong Hing, Anthony D. Romero

ISBN-10: 1592132332

ISBN-13: 9781592132331

Pub. Date: 02/06/2004

Publisher: Temple University Press

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Temple University Press
Publication date:
Mapping Racisms Series
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Product dimensions:
7.00(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.70(d)

Table of Contents

1The Western European New World and the New Americans11
2The Undesirable Asian28
3"Translate This": The 1917 Literacy Law51
4The Xenophobic 1920s62
5The 1952 Act: Excluding Communities, Homosexuals, and Other Undesirables73
61965 to 1990: From Discriminatory Quotas to Discriminatory Diversity Visas93
7Politicizing the Southwest Border115
8Patrolling the Border and Sweeping for Mexicans134
9IRCA: Penalizing Employers, as Amnesty Barely Survives155
10The Dark Side of Modern-Day Enforcement: Operation Gatekeeper184
12The Politics of Asylum233
Epilogue: Two Americas259

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Defining America Through Immigration Policy 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Imazon More than 1 year ago
DEFINING AMERICA THROUGH IMMIGRATION POLICY by Law Professor Bill Ong Hing, is divided into two parts. The first part is a general history of immigration and legislation concering immigration from the late 1700's through the post-quota era of the 70's and 80's and the September 11th fall-out. The second part deals mostly with clandestine border crossers from Mexico and other parts of Latin America. The first part is a little dry and repetitive with information already covered in part in such books as CIVIL RIGHTS IN IMMIGRATION by Milton Konvitz (Cornell, 1952) and Oscar Card in NATIONALISM & RACE IN AMERICA (Anchor Books, 1957). However, Professor Hing does provide some info not included in these other books. The second part is more interestingly written, covering the 1986 amnesty bill and Operation Gatekeeper with brief detours to former Nazi collaborators, John Lennon's case and Iranian students during the hostage crisis. One excellent argument Professor Hing makes here is how the US spends more and more money on the "War on Drugs" Crusade to little effect while repeating the same mistake on human smuggling and clandestine crossings. (A libertarian irony is how many Americans favor legalized drugs--or at least decriminilization of marihuana, but tighter punitive measures on the border for clandestine crossings. Rand Paul, for instance.) He also, surprisingly, points out the "morality" of certain US border-enforcement policies--namely, the Clinton-initiated "Gatekeeper." True, this point may be subjective to a degree and difficult to argue for, but it is comforting to hear older liberals and progressives still use the word "moral" and "morality." Another example, would be when one of the producers of the documentary film, AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH was making his acceptance speech for an Academy Award, he referred to global warming as a "moral issue" as opposed to a mere environmental one. The reason I point this out is that both conservatives and liberals relegate morals and morality to mere sexual ethics, when in reality it is much more than just that. My own opposition to the Death Penalty, for example, is a moral choice and has ABOSULUTELY NOTHING to do on whether it serves as a deterrant or not or even out of fear of executing the wrong person. One very important fact that I come away with this book, even though I have read numerous books on US history, is that much of the history of the United States of America for the past 175 years has been a history of exclusion. This exclusion is evident in the following: the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, the Quota Acts of 1917, 1921, 1924 & 1952; the Gentlemen's Agreement, the Palmer Raids, the creation of the Border Patrol (initially established to prevent Chinese smuggling from the southern border), the repatration of Mexicans and Mexican Americans, 1929 - 1939, Ike's Operation Wetback in 1954, the termination of the Bracero Program in 1964, Operation Gatekeeper in 1994 and post-9/11 punitive measures. One could even include the old Jim Crow laws as an expression of the same mentality. A final note is that the book could have used better editing or at least have been more tightly written. However, it still remains a very much recommended book.