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The growing concerns over illegal immigration into the united states

Introduction 1Immigration reform, political analysts agree, is definitely on the agenda of the Obama administration and could seemingly be introduced into the U. Directives have already been given by Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano that signal a will to tackle immigration issues.

Given the complexity of the task due to a high number of intertwined and sometimes contradictory economic, social and political factors, it is difficult to anticipate what the outcome will be.

Without a doubt, the issue is highly fraught: Yet, the present status quo is no option. United States immigrants have been under growing scrutiny and stress in recent years, especially those without proper immigration papers.

Following the massive mobilizations of 2006, the Bush administration considerably increased its enforcement approach to immigration. In addition to a much tougher policy at the U. Notable abuses against them have been reported, such as the non-payment by employers of hours if not days of work, dire working conditions, harassment and exclusion by communities who refuse to provide housing to day laborers or explicit racial profiling by local police officers.

While there is no indication that President Obama intends to keep up with the enforcement-only approach, politics may dictate otherwise.

Amid focus on immigration from south, illegal crossings from Canada surge

Yet, the recent directives do not reflect signs of significant change. So far few scholars have theorized this question. In an essay entitled Who Controls Immigration: Congress or the States?

Legal scholar Christina Rodriguez convincingly addresses this issue in a brilliant demonstration of how immigration management should be dealt with. The federal-state divide is obsolete, she says.

Her argument will be carefully discussed as it offers alternative ways of thinking and acting. While Benhabib addresses political membership by looking at the boundaries of political community - she advocates the incorporation of aliens as defined by alienage lawsimmigrants and refugees into existing polities, arguing for a notion of just membership, 2 sociologist Sassen focuses on the blurring of the citizen subject and the alien subject as a result of the changes taking place in the current period.

She identifies immigrants as emerging political actors in globalized cities. In the name of September 11 stands for the rationale behind - hence the justification for - the various restrictive laws and policies that have been enacted to fight against terrorism and potential terrorists over the recent years.

Predicated upon a logic of permanent threat, and in a context of growing nativism, the fight against terrorism the United States government has engaged in has wide ramifications. It has extended its berth to migrant groups — in particular the undocumented, making this already vulnerable and easily exploitable category a privileged target.

They became more frequent when the employer sanctions provision of the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act made them legal. The trend intensified with the restrictive immigration and anti-terrorism laws of 1996 and the anti-immigrant provisions contained in the USA Patriot Act of 2001.

Many aspects of H. However, the bill went further. Also, it would have been a felony for anyone to provide services and assist them, whether legally, socially or medically which would have made it very problematic even for immigration lawyers to provide counsel.

One month later, the House and Senate bills moved to Conference Committee where they were supposed to be reconciled but the possibility was torpedoed by the House Republican leadership who listened to the voices of immigration restrictionists.

The final version strengthened anti-immigrant law-enforcement, provided labor protections to only some categories of workers, and defined a tortuous path to legalization for a limited number of undocumented immigrants, establishing a very controversial multi-tiered system. Instead of raising working standards for all workers.

That three-tiered approach creates a caste society in which millions of hard-working immigrants are driven further into the shadows of American society, leaving them vulnerable to exploitation.

The 109th congressional session ended without a compromise, stalling immigration reform. Raids, Detention, Deportation 13Federal funding for raids, detention and deportation has come to replace a democratically debated immigration policy. Developed more intensely since 2006, the measures consist of immigration raids, massive arrests, detention and deportation against the unauthorized immigrant workers living in the country — a vast majority of whom are Latinos.

Among the numerous raids that have been carried out, one series also came as a direct response to the resistance immigrant workers formed in Iowa meatpacking plants during the May 1st mobilizations of 2006.

Of course, such use of immigration enforcement was not unprecedented. According to Bacon, however, the biggest operation began in December 1998 in Nebraska when the INS looked into the personnel records of every meatpacking plant in the state, comparing the employment information including Social Security numbers with the national Social Security database. Requiring undocumented workers to come for an interview at work, the INS hoped to and actually did terminate the jobs of a significant number of them, leading to their arrest and subsequent deportation.

The ICE raid, in the words of a union organizer, was like a nuclear bomb. Workers started to organize as soon as 1994, and their efforts were beginning to show.

On May 12, 2008, at 10 a. Echoing … the general feeling, my fellow interpreter would later exclaim: Driven single-file in groups of 10, shackled at the wrists, waist and ankles, chains dragging as they shuffled through, the slaughterhouse workers were brought in for arraignment, sat and listened through headsets to the interpreted initial appearance, before marching out again to be bused to different county jails, only to make room for the next row of 10.

The terror imposed on immigrant communities is not new, she says. The category itself was created in 1924 with the numerical restriction implemented by the Johnson-Reid Act. In comparison, the literature dealing with the impact of the current Homeland Security State is only emerging.

Yet, it is already providing us with an insightful understanding of the situation. Her documentarist approach reveals what, according to her, is hidden for many Americans: The combination of act and speech policies and rhetoric makes the device a masterful instrument of power.

Latest issues

Who Controls and Manages Immigration, Anyway? The rule was postponed a number of times but, in August 2009, the court decided in favor of the government and dismissed the case, making the final amended rule effective on September 8, 2009.

  1. Workers started to organize as soon as 1994, and their efforts were beginning to show.
  2. Predicated upon a logic of permanent threat, and in a context of growing nativism, the fight against terrorism the United States government has engaged in has wide ramifications.
  3. Developed more intensely since 2006, the measures consist of immigration raids, massive arrests, detention and deportation against the unauthorized immigrant workers living in the country — a vast majority of whom are Latinos. She identifies immigrants as emerging political actors in globalized cities.
  4. On May 12, 2008, at 10 a.

One in particular H. A correlated bill has been introduced in the Senate S. By withholding up to 50 percent of the DHS funds from the cities, the proposed legislation was evidently targeting sanctuary cities whose policies are seen as protecting immigrant rights. Cambridge, Massachusetts, and New Haven, Connecticut, to mention only a few, are prime examples of how some small towns have adopted sanctuary policies.

By granting all residents municipal identification cards, thus helping the unauthorized to access public and even some private sector services, New Haven encourages all immigrants to trust public officials and helps them and the new Haven community at large to live safely.

However, it provided no general power for immigration enforcement by state and local authorities. Several local and state officials have accepted to enroll into the program and are, as a result, authorized to arrest and detain individuals for immigration violations and to investigate immigration cases. The case of Maricopa County, Arizona, is even clearer: Department of Justice launched an investigation into County Sheriff Joe Arpaio to determine whether he was using his power to target Latino immigrants 55: In July 2007 she signed a law in favor of employer sanctions, threatening to suspend their activity.

She dismissed the bill as impractical and expensive: By embracing this notoriously problematic experiment, the new administration is not in line, to say the least, with the reform it has promised, and is already facing serious protest.

It underscores the wide range of views held by public officials and local communities on the subject of immigration management and the way they interact with unauthorized populations in particular.

With a view to discerning the powers of the federal and state governments over noncitizens, Victor Romero examines what constitutional lawyers consider as the two sources that give authority to the federal government: Supreme Court interpreting that text. The Constitution says even less about the power of the states over noncitizens. In contrast, it strictly reviews state and local laws on the theoretical basis that noncitizens do not migrate to an individual state, but to the United States as a country.

Such contrast in the deference granted to the federal government over noncitizens and the systematic review states have been subjected to, Romero contends, is likely to be scrutinized in the coming years as more and more states the growing concerns over illegal immigration into the united states localities try to extend their immigration power. It is thus likely, indeed, that state and local governments will only legislate more. The numerous measures do not speak with one voice, accounting for the diversity of sometimes conflicting positions: State laws evidence such diverging views.

Her ensuing proposition draws on her understanding of the intricacy of the situation: The primary function states and localities play in this structure is to integrate immigrants, legal and illegal alike, into the body politic. By demonstrating how states play this role, I establish the proposition that immigration regulation should be included in the list of … state interests, such as education, crime control and the regulation of safety and welfare, not just because immigration affects each of those interests, but also because managing immigrant movement is itself a state interest.

Immigrants as Emergent Political Subjects 43Immigration regulation cannot be thought of in the sole context of the nation-state. Benhabib challenges membership as defined by the doctrine of state sovereignty: To her, such modalities are no longer adequate. Focusing on emerging rights claims whether migrant, civil or indigenousshe makes a similar stand: Consequently, urban settings - global cities in particular - have become spaces where political practices have actively developed.

  1. The rule was postponed a number of times but, in August 2009, the court decided in favor of the government and dismissed the case, making the final amended rule effective on September 8, 2009. But they do not appear to view the problem with the same urgency as US officials.
  2. It has extended its berth to migrant groups — in particular the undocumented, making this already vulnerable and easily exploitable category a privileged target.
  3. The terror imposed on immigrant communities is not new, she says.
  4. While there is no indication that President Obama intends to keep up with the enforcement-only approach, politics may dictate otherwise. The other two were the smugglers.

Among the multiple actors who have emerged in such productive spaces are the unauthorized migrants. New York University Press, 2008.