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Immigrants’ Human Rights in America: The Issue of Immigration as Old as the Country Essay

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Updated: May 28th, 2020

The issue of immigration into the U.S. is as old as the country itself and it has happened throughout history. There are numerous reasons why people from other countries would be motivated to immigrate to the U.S. and some of the common reasons here include a search for greener pastures, environmental crises, civil unrests and issues of overpopulations in native countries. However, no matter the many unspoken circumstances surrounding these immigrants, they have a right to equal treatment and protection by the law, just like any other ordinary citizen. Whereby it is important for every American citizen to respect and uphold the rights of immigrants, these groups still continue to receive private and public discrimination on various grounds.

All people within the American borders are liable to equal treatment in the country, no matter their ethnicity or cultural differences (Scheve and Slaughter 139). These rights are embodied in the American Constitutional rights and in that case, they do apply to all citizens and not only the native citizens. For this reason, the essential importance of protecting immigrants from any form of abuse and discrimination is something well-understood across all segments of the American society. More importantly, there are various organizations whose main aim is to ensure that the different rights aligned to immigrants are respected and practiced.

However, despite these measures, these groups have continued to be deprived of their rights in most parts. There have always been all forms of dehumanization against immigrants in the U.S. and this can be perceived through the sickening habits of some regions to impose discriminative and restrictive measures against non-citizens in matters of employment and care facilities among other aspects(Espenshade 562). Following these aggressive measures, quite a large number of immigrants in the U.S. have desperately remained subjects of a marginalized existence. Some of the common round-ups here would include denial of promotions in work places, increased bias attacks and hate crimes. These issues are in the forefront, among the dehumanizing acts being exercised on foreigners by the U.S. government and natives.

Another way by which the U.S. government claims to protect the rights of immigrants is by according them care and protection which equals that of any other ordinary American citizen. This as well, has been embodied in the Bill of Rights, where protection of non-citizens against any form of abuse is emphasized. On this basis, equal security and protection is a right for all people within the American border, regardless of their race or ethnicity (Sainsbury 235). One way of exercising this right is by ensuring constant advocacy of the rights of immigrants across the country especially in matters regarding social justice in the society.

There is more than enough evident that the U.S. government is not walking the talk in its pledge to safeguard the rights of immigrants on various segments of its expansive society. Whereby it is important for everyone to receive a fair recognition and treatment by the government and other key organizations, immigrants are often the most vulnerable target of exploitation from these organizations. Effective measures are not being practiced to address the plight of immigrants in the U.S. A clear evidence of this dehumanization can be witnessed in detention facilities, where hundreds of thousands of immigrants are held. Whereby the use of detention as a way of curbing unauthorized migration violates the international human rights, it can be overwhelming to think of the period immigrants do spend behind bars, before receiving a hearing to determine their cases (Wright 203). Another big challenge often faced by these groups of people in such circumstances is lack of representation to secure justice in their rights.

As observed here, the rights of immigrants have never been fully respected in USA. When the authorities have the power to fully extend its services to only its original natives, then, the rights of immigrants are at risk. America cannot claim to be loyal to its Constitution, when it does not fully uphold and value the rights of the many innocent immigrants within its borders. In order to make the constitution a living document, America should introduce effective measures in ensuring that the rights of all immigrants are fully recognized, secured and protected.

Works Cited

Espenshade, Thomas. Contemporary American attitudes toward US immigration. International Migration Review 17. 4(2006): 535-570. Print.

Sainsbury, Diane. Immigrants’ social rights in comparative perspective: welfare regimes, forms in immigration and immigration policy regimes. Journal of European Social Policy 16. 3 (2006): 229-244. Print.

Scheve, Kenneth and Slaughter, Matthew. Labor market competition and individual preferences over immigration policy. Review of Economics and Statistics 83. 1(2001):133—145. Print.

Wright, Richard. Race, region and the territorial politics of immigration in the US. International Journal of Population Geography 6. 3 (2000): 197-211. Print.

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