Abstract

This essay examines the multiple forms that law, policy, and public attitudes take toward immigrants and the role of undocumentedness in maintaining systems of national and global inequalities. It is based on firsthand testimonies from the U.S.-Arizona border and the Streamline court system that illustrate how racism and discrimination are reproduced and justified. It compares today's forms of legal marginalization, and their justifications, to the slave system. Today, an insistence that discrimination against Mexicans does not constitute discrimination at all since it is based on "nationality" instead of "race" offers a convenient rationale for the legal marginalization of approximately 10 percent of the U.S. population: the "undocumented." And this marginalization keeps them trapped in the cycle of providing the cheap labor upon which our overconsumption is based.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1935-8652
Print ISSN
1935-8644
Pages
pp. 203-210
Launched on MUSE
2011-07-09
Open Access
No
Archive Status
Archived
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