How and Why Undocumented Immigration Has Grown Since 1965
Immigration in the context of the United States has evolved into a significant problem that requires urgent resolution. While it is true that influx of undocumented immigrants in the United States date to various year ago, it is of the essence that the year 1965 experienced the highest rise in the rates undocumented immigrants gaining entry through our porous borders. The main factor that is responsible for the immense growth of undocumented immigrants in the year 1965 is the inaction of The Immigration and Naturalization Act of the year 1965. This act paved way for the rise in illegal immigration in that it abolished the quota system that had been critical in curbing illegal immigration into the United States (Kenney 33). After abolishing the quota system that was founded on the basis of national origin, The Immigration and Naturalization Act of the year 1965 devised a new immigration policy founded on the basis of attracting skilled labour into the United States and reuniting immigrant families. Apart from The Immigration and Naturalization Act of the year 1965, other policies enacted after the year 1965 offered a comprehensive platform that allow entry into the United States by immigrants drawn from various parts of the globe including Africa and Asia (Ericson 24). A reflection on Grande’s text The Distance between Us depicts the fact that influx of undocumented immigrants in the United States was precipitated by the pertinent notions that the United States offered a comprehensive platform for success. In the text, we find Grande’s father leaving his family in a village in Mexico and making a dangerous walk across Mexico’s border into the United States. Grande’s father walked away from them promising to return back with a fortune that he would purportedly bring from the United States (Grande 75). This offer a clear analysis on the false hope that drove immigrants into the United States.
The “distance between us” in the current text can refer to the separation that immigrants feel from non-immigrants in the United States.
Challenges Faced By Non-English Speakers in the United States
Certainly, non-English speakers in the United States face a wider array of challenges. More importantly, English in the United States is a crucial factor that is considered in the employment context. As such, a significant proportion of high paying jobs require a high level of English proficiency. This is perhaps the most pertinent reason as to why a significant proportion of non-English speakers do not hold high paying jobs. Instead, the non-English speakers occupy middle-level jobs whose pay is not that satisfying. The quest to by non-English speakers to enhance their proficiency in English is clouded by the fact that English lessons require additional time, which they may not have. While it is true that there are certain non-English speakers who have not learnt English and rely on translation as a means of communication, there is a need to not that getting translators can be difficult at times. Another significant challenge faced by non-English speakers aligns with the fact that non-English speakers in the United States are often considered unpatriotic. For this purpose, anyone being heard speaking a foreign language is take to be a non-patriotic citizen. In fact, the persistent use of foreign language amongs non-English speakers has been used a means of discriminating against such populations.
On a similar note, children for whom English is a second language experience various difficulties, particularly in the context of education. This is because education policies utilized across different education context do not elucidate on how teachers a should dealt with students whom English is their second language. Despite the fact that this matter needs urgent attention, concerned stakeholders hold the view that there is no need to waste resources educating children in another language other than English. Despite the fact that bilingual education is a civil right that is enshrined in the constitution, this right is rarely advocated for and this jeopardizes the lives of children whom English is their second language. The fact that issues affecting children whom English is a second language are ignored has a ripple effect on the overall performance of public schools across various states (Chavez 22).
How Do The Different Members Of Grande Family Adopt To This Challenge?
Being non-English speakers, members of Grande family are often prompted to adopt coping strategies that would help them deal with the challenge. The most comprehensive means through which member of Grande family adopt is learning English by themselves. In some instances, there are some institutions that offer coaching lessons on English. Such institutions pay an important role in addressing the needs of the non-English speakers, as well as those who use English as their second language (Chavez 82). Having a translator occurs as the other means through which Grande’s family members could use to address the challenges culminating from the mere fact that they non-native speakers. However, getting a translator is not as easy as it seems.
How did the Grande family’s undocumented status affect their lives and abilities in the U.S.? What changed for them?
Growing up with an undocumented status, Grande and family experienced challenging life. Grande and her siblings arrived in the United States as undocumented citizens. They share their accounts of how they were fighting hard to attain the renowned American dream. Their narrations are symbolic of the exertions that millions of undocumented youth and children in United States who have to handle issues such as peer isolation, the struggle to get educated, trauma associated with family separation and the fear of deportation and detention on a daily basis? The memoir “the distance between us” charts the path of young girl from Iguala; a small town, to the busy metropolis of Los Angeles to link up with family who basically abandoned her (Grande 8). Grande lives in secrecy something that fuels her despair. She is unable to pursue solace from her father; who abuses her daily. However, unlike the generation before her, she is wise as she finds an escape from the shadows with the assistance of a mentor; who conceptualizes great potential and imagination that her family failed to see.
Although life in America has certain opportunities that could set her free, the search for freedom is not adequately focused on the advocacy for reforms in immigration because it is adopting a sensitive platform of the undocumented child (Grande 109). Her power to attain understanding forgiveness after experiencing such family separation is adorable. However, the fear is her insistence on expanding the narrative that is normally reduced to transgression; the immigration. In fact this is a single stroke in the image of a family that in a similar way to other numerous immigrant families experience cultural or social dislocation, emotional distancing and isolation attributed to neglect by family.
Chavez, Leo. Shadowed Lives: Undocumented Immigrants in American Society. Ney Jersey: Cengage Learning, 2012. Print.
Ericson, David. The Politics of Inclusion and Exclusion Identity Politics in the Twenty-First Century America. Boston: Routledge, 2010. Print.
Grande, Reyna. The Distance between Us: A Memoir. London: Simon and Schuster, 2013. Print.
Kenney, Karen. Illegal Immigration. Boston: Wiley & Sons, 2010. Print.