Criminalization Of Immigration

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The United States has always been a land of immigration. From the first group of pilgrims that travelled across the Atlantic Ocean, to the masses which flooded through the gates of Ellis Island, and to today, where we still see those from foreign lands dream of pursuing the American Dream. Since the beginning, the United States has been a beacon to those who dream of a better life, and it is because of this blend of countless cultures that the United States has become the melting pot it is today. That being said, in recent history the United States has been undergoing an increase in the criminalization of immigration. Ewing, Martinez, and Rumbaut tackle the increase in the criminalization of immigration from two angles in the article, “The…show more content…
Due to the fact the United States policy-makers, in regards to immigration, let their fears and prejudices influence changes to immigration policy, immigration policy has broadened to the point in which the laws itself have created an escalation of “criminal alien” and the double standards of consequences, for criminal behavior, being applied to them. The federal government’s definition of criminal alien has been broadened so that it is now evidently inconsistent with the general public’s understanding of serious crimes. This redefinition is apparent when looking at the data the authors provide from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security because while they claim that 45% of foreign nationals removed from the United States in FY 2013 were classified as “known criminal aliens,” even though in actuality the crimes these immigrants were removed for would not be considered as serious crimes by the public. Over half of the offenses in which immigrants are subjected to removal are crimes that would not be perceived by American’s to be serious. This makes immigrants have the need to be even wearier, for even a traffic violation can lead to…show more content…
Government has become reliant upon private prison corporation to handle the increasing number of “criminal aliens,” and has the industry of immigration-detention grew, so did the redefinition of “immigrants.” This time the redefinition made immigrants into a dangerous group of people, which would in most cases make a member of the public even more fearful of immigrants. Being that these private prison corporations are going to flourish as long as they are being relied upon by government for this duty, they are, as any typical industry would, going to do what is in their power to ensure they stay relevant. If this means redefining immigrants in a way in which will promote more business for themselves, then they are going to push that as far as they can to maintain the power they have come to
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