Controversial Essays On Immigration

The second reason that I suggest these debates are sterile relates to the tendency to use simplistic dichotomies in discussing the issues raised by immigration—such as bad or good immigrants, closed or open borders, pull or push factors, and nationalistic realism (justified by the ethics of responsibility to protect the nation) in contrast to idealist cosmopolitanism (based on the ethics of conviction and the need to protect human rights).Such a binary approach ignores the “grey zones” that characterize many aspects of the decision-making process in the fields of border controls, socio-economic policies, and integration policies.

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Such a belief is used to legitimize “extraordinary measures” such as the reestablishment of border controls within the Schengen area in the aftermath of the 2015 refugee crisis; the erection of fences in Central and Eastern Europe; the violation of the Dublin regulation in Europe and of the Geneva Convention elsewhere; and the stationing of military troops at the US-Mexican border.

Consistent with those scholars “bringing the state back in,” I argue that immigration policy remains one of the few bastions of state sovereignty.

The ethics of responsibility requires prioritizing the interests of the state and its citizens; yet, it does not require the infringement of the human rights and civil liberties of “others”—notably in the current context of a “permanent state of emergency” in which native citizens are also targeted by discriminatory security measures. Instead of asking whether immigration is good or bad for democracy, I thus advocate analyzing what kind of immigration policies are democratic and which are not.

Conversely, proponents of the ethic of conviction tend to underestimate the issues raised by the minority integration process, taking for granted the idea that “diversity” will produce more tolerance. Addressing this question requires defining the contours and substance of a democratic governance of immigration.

Conversely, proponents of liberal policies argue that the socio-economic and cultural contributions of immigrants are largely positive.

They praise immigration as improving “diversity” (also broadly defined) while noting that newcomers actually assimilate faster than prior generations of immigrants, including those (such as Muslims and Hispanics) often suspected of being unable to assimilate at all.CONTEMPORARY IMMIGRATION DEBATES ARE FREQUENTLY STUDIED AS POPULATION FLOWS across spatial borders, with relatively less scholarly reflection on how the stakes of those debates are framed and contested in terms of time.The insufficiency persists despite the glaringly obvious temporal dimensions of neo-nativist arguments in the U. on behalf of reclaiming a past of patriarchal, white-governed, national greatness—partisans plainly seeking to turn back the clock.Yet, how should people born in their country of residence be defined when they do not have access to citizenship?Or how should nationals who are perceived as immigrants on the basis on their foreign origin be defined when they are citizens?The logic that immigrants do the jobs that Americans will not, or cannot do, perpetuates an already enduring biopolitics whereby the extended lifetimes of dominant populations are leveraged on the foreshortened lifespans of racial others.Either stated or implied, a working premise is that a steady supply of cheap and plentiful immigrant workers is necessary to provide citizens with the accoutrements of twenty-first century digital capitalism, even if it means that immigrant others toil in conditions evocative of the nineteenth century.Immigrants reputedly threaten national identity and societal cohesion, especially the newcomers whose perceived distinctiveness challenges the assimilative capacity of their host societies.These claims fuel populist movements, nativist agendas, and anti-migrant sentiments.States have the full authority to select who is allowed to enter the country, apply for asylum, and be granted citizenship.The inability of Western democracies to manage the dynamics of the migratory process should therefore not be interpreted as an indicator of their limited capacity to rule.


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