Tuesday, February 14, 2017


Trump’s Refugee Ban Isn’t as Un-American as You Think

"A century ago this February, the 64th Congress of the United States overrode President Woodrow Wilson’s third veto to pass the 1917 Immigration Restriction Act. This act—for which anti-immigration and eugenics proponents such as the Immigration Restriction League (IRL) had lobbied for decades—barred “idiots, imbeciles, epileptics, alcoholics,... poor, criminals, beggars, any person suffering attacks of insanity” from entering the country. The act likewise decreed that immigrants take a literacy test to determine if they represented a “desirable” or “undesirable” population. The U.S. allowed in more of the...Western or Northern European...

In 1882, a little more than a decade before the IRL formed in Boston, the U.S. federal government asserted its constitutional authority over naturalization and immigration by passing both the Chinese Exclusion Act and the Immigration Act. This marked the first time the U.S. used federal law to discriminate against immigrants—in this case the Chinese, who constituted .002 percent of the country’s population—by race or ethnicity, and the introduction of “undesirable” subjects into federal law. For the Chinese, this meant they could not enter the U.S. for ten years, which only grew when Congress renewed the act in 1892. It likewise meant that those in the U.S. could never become U.S. citizens...

By 1921, accepting mounting bodies of pseudoscience as fact, President Calvin Coolidge would say that “biological laws tell us that certain divergent people will not mix or blend.” Three years later, Coolidge signed the 1924 Immigration Restriction Act into law, which received the support of the Ku Klux Klan, barred all of Asia from entering the U.S., and introduced a national origins quota system (which some would say made the death toll of the Holocaust that much greater). Putting pen to paper, Coolidge added, “America must remain American.”

As eugenics fell out of favor, the U.S. developed other ways and reasons to define “undesirable” subjects and govern their movement. As the twentieth century wore on, national security concerns played a more prominent role in informing the treatment of these groups. Following the 1941 bombing of Pearl Harbor, Lieutenant General John DeWitt wrote that the “Japanese race is an enemy race … and while many second- and third-generation Japanese born on United States soil, possessed of United States citizenship, have become ‘Americanized,’ the racial strains are undiluted.” Heeding the advice of his cabinet, Franklin Delano Roosevelt ordered over 100,000 Japanese-Americans into forced labor camps, with the government seizing their possessions."

from research by Michael Scipio. His source I am not privy to.  

General Toussaint L'Ouverture of Haiti lead his people to overthrow the French. His victory was
the first African revolt that kicked a European power out of power. Haiti has paid for that for
centuries. Economically punished.

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