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Immigration

Since the below homophones (similar sound, but different in spelling & meaning), so often used in this paper, are confusing words, it is important that we first learn their meaning so that the theme in ensuing paragraphs could be understood quite perfectly. Definition 1. Immigrate: to come to a country of which one is not a native for the purpose of settling down and having permanent residence. 2. Immigration: the act of immigrating or settling in a foreign country. 3. Immigrant: a person who immigrates or comes to a country to settle (correlative of emigrant) 4. Emigrate: to quit or leave one country to settle and live in another.

5. Emigration: the act of emigrating or leaving a country to live in another. 6. Emigrant: a person who emigrates. 7. Emigre: a person who has emigrated for political reasons. 8. Migrate: to move from one place of residence to another with the seasons. 9. Migration: the act of migrating or moving ones residence from one place to another. 10. Migrant: one who migrates or moves from one country to another. Technical Terms a) Visa: is a legal approval or endorsement which the concerned government authority places on a passport. The authorities of the country, a person intends to enter, grant him or her visa.

The mere placement of visa certifies that the passport under scrutiny is valid. Then the immigration officials grant permission to the bearer of this visa to enter the country. A government of the country the traveler intends to enter can, for any reason, refuse to grant visa to a particular person. (Pranger, Robert J. , n. p. n. d. ) b) Passport: is a legal travel document certifying the citizenship of the holder for the country that issues it, and allows him or her safe passage from one country to another and is entitled to all lawful protection under the international law.

But visa on the passport is must for entering those countries which impose visa endorsement condition. In the United States, it is the Department of State in Washington, D. C which issues passport. (Pranger, Robert J. , n. p. n. d. ) Introduction The term Immigration as explained above is an act of settling in a new country, while emigration is the act of leaving the native country to settle in another. But those who virtually run away from their country because of the fear of harassments, disasters, or epidemics are called “refugees”.

Many people find extremely difficult and sometimes impossible to make a potential and respectable living in their native lands, so they decide to leave their birth places and move to the estranged world outside in search of better and more prosperous living. Countless of such immigrations had been made since the dawn of human civilization, the heaviest of which took place in history from 1800s until up to the hard times of the Great Depression in 1930. It is estimated that nearly 65 million people moved to new lands during that period of time.

However, immigration today is much easier than it was in the olden days, just because of the availability of faster and safer means of transportation. (Reimers, David M. , n. p. n. d. ) Most affected by immigration issue In the modern world today, it is now Asia instead of Europe which is considered most famous as the largest immigrants-sending area, so also the United States as the receiving nation and a safe haven for these immigrants. (Reimers, David M. , n. p. n. d. ) Illegal Immigration A person, who enters another country illegally i. e. without authentic documents required in his or her immigration is called “Illegal Alien”.

These illegal aliens or non-citizens are often those unfortunate people who flee to foreign countries because of hunger, poverty, economic hardship and miserable lives they experience in their homelands. Countless illegal aliens from Central America and Mexico came to the United States over the years. The illegal aliens, if caught entering the US, have option to seek ‘political asylum’ , and they may be allowed to stay in the country if the judge grants them such an asylum. After thorough investigations, it has been found that all among those caught for illegal entry into the United States are not undocumented.

From various surveys conducted over the time, the government authorities have estimated that from the lot of illegal aliens, nearly half of them are those persons, who make overstay i. e. continue staying even after their work permits and visas get expired. The Differing Opinions There are divided opinions among people about the illegal aliens especially in the United States. Some people are against the illegal aliens as they think they are extra burden on the wealth accumulated through taxes, the government spends on myriad public services as schools, libraries, parks and public entertainments, and these being equally used by aliens.

But opinion contrary to it is shared by those people who think that the aliens have equal right over the use of such facilities and public services because the aliens too pay all the taxes. And there are other defenders of the aliens in the United States who hold that since most aliens accept low paid jobs or the menial works which otherwise would not be acceptable to the legal citizens; their stay can still be supported for the reason. (Reimers, David M. , n. p. n. d. ) Historical Background of the Issue

Some of the most important agencies and departments which have been dealing with the Immigration Issues include: 1. Immigration and Naturalization Service: The Immigration and Naturalization Service for short INS was a government agency of the US which had successfully enforced United States Immigration Laws (1891 – 2003). The agency was responsible for regulating the aliens’ entrance into the United States. The INS, which was created by the Congress in 1891 as an integral part of the Labor Department, not only banned the entry of illegal aliens but also deported them to their respective countries.

(Lowell, B. Lindsay. , n. p. n. d. ). 2. Department of Homeland Security: The Department of Homeland Security for short DHS is the US state department, responsible for the security of the nation. The Homeland Security Department was an executive department of the US Government that was created by the Homeland Security Act of 2002. (Mockaitis, Tom. , n. p. n. d. ) 3. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, United States: The Immigration and Customs Enforcement, United States for short ICE is the immigration law enforcing agency of the United States.

In the investigation of suspected violations, the primary objective of the agency is to get rid of all the terrorists and keep the terrorists weapons out of the country. (I. C. E. , United States, n. p. n. d. ) 4. Citizenship and Immigration Services, United States: The Citizenship and Immigration Services, United States for short USCIS, is the agency of the United States that oversees and looks after all the services relating immigration, reviewing petitions and work permit applications of the citizens.

The USCIS, which was also created by the Homeland Security Act of 2002, regulating the entry of illegal aliens, began functioning actively in March 2003. The USCIS is also the integral part of the Department of Homeland Security of the United States. (Citizenship and Immigration Services, United States, n. p. n. d. ) The Socioeconomic, Psychological & Political Causes of Immigration The myriad reasons for which most People leave their native country to settle in another include: 1. Some people leave their homeland to avoid hunger and starvation. 2.

Some people emigrate for the purpose of adventure and joy. 3. Some people move outside their native lands to evade horrendous and intolerable family situations. 4. But some others move out in their desire to be reunited with their dear ones. 5. There is still a group of people who move to new lands because of religious persecution. The most apt examples of emigrants in pursuit for religious freedom and to practice their faith freely, are the Jews of England in 1200s and the Bahai’s of Iran in 1980s. 6. Political unrest, revolutions and wars also forced people to emigrate from their native lands.

Tens of thousand fled from their homelands because of the horrors associated with warfare. The examples of people fleeing from their country because of fights , conflicts and wars include: a) Bosnia-Herzegovina b) Ethiopia c) Iraq d) East Timor e) Rwanda f) Liberia g) The Serbian province of Kosovo. 7. The Economic Causes as: lure for better economic opportunities; better and lucrative jobs, and ultimately better and more prosperous life. For example many European farmers emigrated from their native lands to the rich prairie land of the US during 1800’s. (Reimers, David M. , n. p. n. d. )

Immigration to the United States For most immigrants the United States has long been the world’s main attraction place and the land of opportunities for which the United States has been playing as the chief host or the major receiving nation. There were four basic and broad phases of immigration which to place in the United States over the years. These periods or the so called waves of immigration included: 1. The first period of immigration constituted the US Colonist of the 1600s before the Revolutionary war in America in 1775. 2. The second chief wave of immigration began in 1820s and ending until 1870s.

3. The third major wave of immigration began when people started pouring in bulk into the United States from 1880s to the early 1920s. 4. The fourth wave of immigration to the US started in 1965 due to the drastic changes in the United States Immigration laws. (Reimers, David M. , n. p. n. d. ) Current US Programs Relating Immigration One of the most important contributory factors in the civilizational uplift of the United States is its immigration policy. People from all over the world had been migrating to the US, looking for economic prosperity and for better standard of life, for many past years.

But the recent tragedy of 9/11 has put America on its toes with regard to its immigration laws and programs. In danger of further suicidal terrorist attacks on America, the American administration has recently imposed strict laws and stringent immigration policy with new immigration laws safeguarding the nation from possible threats to its existence. An overview of the new immigration law in the USA follows: The new bill under the immigration law is called, “The Border Protection, Antiterrorism, and Illegal Immigration Control Act of 2005-vide H. R. Bill 4437.

This bill was passed in December, 2005 by a vote of 239 to 182. The Salient features of the new bill include: 1. The fencing of US Mexican border up to 1120 km (700 miles), at the places which are vulnerable and most attractive in the border crossings. 2. Taking into custody by the federal government of all the illegal aliens who had been detained previously by the local authorities. 3. Empowering the workers to testify the legal status via electronic means. 4. Eradicating or abolishing the ‘Diversity Immigrant Visa’ which is also commonly known as Green Card Lottery.

5. Eliminating grants to local, state or federal government agencies which have sanctuary policy that has been enacted. (New Immigration Law in the US, n. p. n. d. ) The Debate over the Bill The said bill has been subjected to a gross controversy with regard to its intensions. Various organizations, the humanitarian and religious groups and numerous migrants are of the opinion that the proposed bill and its legislation would have an adverse affect on nearly twelve million illegal immigrants and their families living in the USA. Pros and Cons of the Bill

In addition to a hot debate over the bill there have been negative as well as positive reactions. In the positive side, the body known as the National Immigration Forum holds that the said bill has, in fact, has put into force the complete immigration reform as it has paved the way for granting citizenship status to thousands of immigrants. Whereas, the voices on the negative side state that the legislation of the bill can lead to the growth of millions of illegal aliens into the United States in the coming years. The Republican & Democrat Perceptions in Immigration Introduction to Liberal Republican Party:

This was a US political party which was formed in 1872. The members who joined this party opposed the reelection of President Ulysses S. Grant because of his earlier corrupted regime. They disliked the policies of Grant especially for tariff reforms, civil services and especially for his policies in the South. Thus, more liberal reforms were made by the party members in a party convention held at Ohio demanding the immediate civil government to be established in each of the former confederate states, so also the abolition of the restrictions on the civil and political rights of the citizens.

But the Republican party even with great public support was defeated in the 1872 election. (Jenkins, Jeffery A. , n. p. n. d. ) The Present-day Republican Party: The present day Republican Party, also remembered as the ‘GOP’ i. e. Grand Old Party is one of the major two parties of the United States two-party system, alongside the other political party called the Democratic Party. The Republican Party which was found in 1854 through the union of former members who opposed the institution of slavery and its expansion.

This party which is more liberal of the two mentioned above is based in the in- land west and the south. The current party leader is the president of the US George W. Bush. From 2002 the Republicans have been attaining majority of seats in the House of Representatives and the senate. The symbol of the Republican party is the elephant. It is worth noting, however, that from a total of 29 US presidents, 18 have been from the Republican Party including the present US president George W. Bush.

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