The Birth of ‘Illegal’ ImmigrationBreaking News
tags: immigration, Trump
Until the late 19th century, there wasn’t any such thing as “illegal” or “legal” immigration to the United States. That’s because before you can immigrate somewhere illegally, there has to be a law for you to break.
American immigration didn’t really begin until the late 1700s, when the United States became an independent nation. Before that, Africans had unwillingly entered the Americas as enslaved peoples and Europeans had entered as settlers—which is something totally different. While immigrants are beholden to the laws of the land they migrate to, settlers come to disrupt the current system and implement their own laws, write the scholars Eve Tuck and K. Wayne Yang.
But once the U.S. made its Constitution the new law of the land, immigrants flocked to the country with few restrictions. This didn’t mean that they were welcomed in the “New World.” In the beginning, when immigrants came mostly from northern and western Europe, anti-Irish and anti-Catholic sentiment were rampant. By the mid- to late-19th century, people from southern and eastern Europe as well as China were coming over, and Americans resented the presence of Chinese, Italians, and more Catholics.
comments powered by Disqus
- The National Security Agency's own history of tracking of U.S. Citizens is flawed
- Before Trump vs. the NFL, there was Jackie Robinson vs. JFK
- Saudi Textbook Withdrawn Over Image of Yoda With King
- Israelis are celebrating the Kurds’ bid for independence
- Wall Street Journal study finds that rural youths who enlisted after 9/11 shouldered the greatest burden for the nation’s defense
- Jelani Cobb unloads on Trump’s double standard of patriotism in the New Yorker
- Lonnie Bunch is astonished the African-American History Museum has become a pilgrimage site so fast
- Nancy Isenberg says what Americans think is exceptional about them is that they erased class distinctions
- Niall Ferguson’s new book is a warning about the pernicious threat of networks
- Yale history department now emphasizing global history in undergraduate courses