The Immigrant Song: The Story Of California's Mexican Immigrant Children
The Immigrant Song: The Story of California's Mexican Immigrant Children
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The Immigrant Song: The Story of California's Mexican Immigrant Children
The United States propose itself of being a nation that has endured a lot of immigration. Also, the United States presents itself as a country that has a history of successfully absorbing people from different parts of the globe rather than a single area. This assimilation and immigration also include the integration of children along with the families that can play a central role in forming and formulating future of the United States, by contributing to the economic vitality as well as the ever-changing culture values (von Glascoe, et al 2019). It is said that the United States is making signifying efforts so that the children of immigrants can assimilate within the culture and the setting of the United States and they can play a central role in incorporating progression to the country. Although it is what, that is conveyed, an in-depth analysis asserts it is not that easy for the immigrant children to adjust, also there are no evident efforts in the form of policy designed by the United States of America (Sawyer , et al 2019). As a result, it is asserted that there are a lot of issues that are faced by immigration children ranging from recognition to the survival options.
Immigration is increasing at an unprecedented stage in the United States, taking into account that on average about one million immigrants both legal as well illegal are entering the country since the 1970s (Sawyer , et al 2019). Today there are 41 million immigrants in the United States and they present about 13.1% of the total population of the United States, making up 12% of the Americans (von Glascoe, et al 2019). In terms of the first and second generation, it is going that one out of the four members of the US population are immigrants and they are successfully integrating into the current paradigms. In the context of new immigrants, there is a different situation and a background scenario (Sawyer, et al 2019). Between 1900 and 1930, there has been massive political turmoil in Mexico and this resulted in the agribusinesses in the American Southwest adhering to the immigration of Mexicans to the United States of America (Ropp & S, 2019). Mexican immigration in the 20 century is one of the major events that added authenticity to the immigration statement of the United States. For Mexicans, immigration is not something that was temporary or for a short course of time, in fact, it is a one-time journey that refers to a permanent shift. This comprises of both documented and undocumented immigration, taking into account that responsibility is shouldered to the United States government. If immigration from Mexico is a onetime journey than it is highlighted that the children of the migrants would definitely study and work in the United States and now is the edge of complications, attracting the attention of others (Ropp & S, 2019). In California, over hand of the population who walk through the classroom door live in immigrant head household. Today, California is home to almost 11 million immigrants that makes up a quarter of the foreign-born population. In 2017, about 27% of the population was immigrants (Ropp & S, 2019). Nearly half of the California population is naturalized as the United States citizen and as per the information collected. The center of immigration studies about 23% of the population in California are undocumented. Although there have been some significant efforts in the past currently there is some heart-breaking news that is seen on the timeline of the world. It is found that today one in five are the immigrant children and they have to face a lot of issues in terms of their survival and living. It asserted that 21 century should probably be called as the century of the children of immigrants. According to one of the surveys of 35000 teachers, that was conducted in 730 schools, counted in 24 districts it is highlighted that the immigration policies are casting a negative impact on the immigrant families as well as leading to social and psychological issues with an increased academic decline and high level of anxiety in children (Light, et al 2017). These significant issues are disuse as follows.
Role of immigration policies
It is a word of mouth there are a lot of immigration policies designed by the government of the United State are meant for improvement adhering to a broader control and the integration of the policies. Unfortunately, it is highlighted that the immigration reforms and polices have not shown the required results, in fact these policies have become one of the central notions of promoting discrimination between locals and the immigrants. The situations are even worsened by the end of the Immigration Reform and Control Act (Pitti & S. J, 2018). Possessing ambiguous documents or fewer documents have excluded a particular number out of the quota of those who should be given basic necessities of life that is casting a negative impact on the children in California.
Assimilation vs. Acculturation
According to many of the researchers, the issue of immigration is now turned into a philosophical one. there are two major dimensions and concepts that are used to explain immigration adaptation process either it is a classical model that is an assimilation model, and the other is that of a melting pot that refers to the acculturation process (Pitti & S. J, 2018). An in-depth analysis has highlighted that there is a dire need to define the definition of merging for children in terms of assimilation or acculturation because there is a need to look for one way out. In order to promote homogeneity in school, students need to assimilate while teachers continue to teach the concept of a boiling pot which is not capable of resulting in the required outcomes. Assimilation requires a reformation that requires children to forget their past while boiling pot assert them to keep their identity which is hard for the other students to digest and adhere to. So, there is a need for social reform that can infer assimilation in the children.
In addition to the political and economic progressions, the social context has made a significant impact on immigrant children or children of California. It is highlighted that the identities of immigrant children are shaped by the ethos of reception (Gutiérrez & R. A 2019). In schools, immigrant children face a lot of issues in representation in class. The major reasons for their underrepresentation are the lack of teacher training and other approaches that can be favorable for students. Students quote that their teachers usually make them realize that they are exploiting American resources as they are overpopulating the country, especially while studying social studies.
Challenges of Language Acquisition
Another major barrier that stops students in California from becoming assimilated with the other students of the class is the language barrier. It is highlighted that usually there are pronunciation issues and a lot of gaps in the understanding language that position immigrants on at a lower position as compared to the other students in the class. Immigrant children's accent, dialect, and choice of words is something that is always criticized and they are unaccepted. Though it is something that cannot be sorted by the help of some policies but welcoming attitude, and code shifting is something that can resolve this issue. This issue is not just confined to the realm of student life, but it paves the way for a student unable to understand what their teachers are saying. It also refers to the gap between students and the instructor language, which leads to the feeling of segregation and loneliness in schools (Light, et al 2017).
Ethic and racial identities and association are more like a dilemma in the present time because it is an issue that is presented several times but it is deep-rooted in the mind of every student. These stereotypes are one of the major issues that refrain a student from practicing the decorum or culture of the school or the education system. There are a lot of cases in which students don’t want to go to school because their class fellows think about them as someone who is not part of their culture. The intensity of these stereotypes is seen in the violent attitude of students, highlighted immigrants being abused and threatened by the other class fellows. This stereotyping results in social, moral and then psychological deterioration because immigrant student also develops that hatred for the students finding themselves unable to fit in the set dimensions (Feliciano, et al. 2019)
Segregation is one of the barriers that is faced by the students in California. Firstly the idea of being an immigrant and new to someplace is always frightening for the students. The sadness to the situation is added by the segregation that is faced by the students in the names of “immigrant” in schools. This differentiation paves the way for unwanted and unseen distances that can not only affect the life of the student but it can also enhance the gap in the student relationships. According to one of the researchers, the information resources have become so strong that almost everyone knows about immigrants and immigrants from different cities are given different connotations that is tormenting for students. This segregation creates psychological barriers that keep students of California segregated and apart from the other students in the same classroom (Light, et al 2017).
Immigration has several social connotations and one of these connotations is "poor life standards”, “lack of Sandside life” and “immorality”. There are several research reports in which “crime” is also associated with immigration. All these issues cast a negative impact on students within school realms. Poverty is something that attracts the attention of everyone. The stance of materialism and material wealth is so strong that children don't want to be friends with the poor, especially when they are immigrants. Poverty is another aspect that refrains a child in California from participating in the classroom setting taking into account that children of California don’t have the learning resources and the required resources that can let them assimilate with the classmates (Pitti & S. J, 2018).
Lower standards of living is another major concern to be addressed because there is a lot of students in California who live in deprived conditions and it prevents students from being a part of society. Just like other policies of student funding, attention is required in this context as well but still, it is one of the issues that is disturbing the mental comfort of the children of California. Another phenomenon associated with social paradigms is the essence of crime and immorality. The stereotypes and perceptions that immigrant students are low in moral growth and they are criminal creates psychological gaps among the students. It is one of the reasons that student fails to assimilate with the other classmates taking into account that this notion cannot be fought off as it is fed by the families of the students (Gándara & P 2019).
Education is something that is a compulsion for everyone when it comes to educating the children of California there are a lot of issues that are faced by the students in terms of education. One of the issues is the unavailability of seats for education in the schools, there are a lot of schools that are reluctant to give admission to the student who are immigrants or who have come from some other geographical location. Also, there is a complete denial of the acceptance of children of California especially in the private schools that are myriad of good education. It is highlighted that the students are doomed to get admissions in public schools where they have to deal with other social and ethical dilemmas by themselves. Also, there is a massive gap observed at the edge of the students who are taught by the teachers, reflecting that the teachers do not pay equal attention to the students, either immigrant students are criticized or they are treated as absentees in the classroom which is more of a dilemma (Pitti & S. J, 2018).
Taking into account some particular cases and evidence of people immigrating because of violence or some critical issues, there is a possibility that students might suffer from health issues. When students are admitted to schools, their health concerns are treated as transmittable disease, rather than empathizing with the students the other students are taught to stay away for them. Also, there are a lot of students who are doomed to get admission in public schools in California and there, they are exposed to some unclean conditions and environment that may develop some serious health concerns. Health issues also include a negative attitude towards the illness of student highlighting the idea of disease because of some ill act or lack of hygiene awareness. All these and other compact aspects are associated with the students taking into account that hatred reaction not only imparts gap in assimilation but they make students hate education and the students prefer to stay at home and work (Ropp & S, 2019).
Access to resources
It is asserted that the unacceptance of children of California is not just limited to the attitude but there a lot of physical attempts to degrade students such as lack of access to the learning resources. It is highlighted that there are a lot of students who have shared that their teachers do not share with them the online available resources. As they don’t have the gadgets so they have to stay idle and share with friends themselves rather than initiatives by teachers to arrange for their learning.
All these issues play a central role in casting a negative effect on the immigrant children who are living in California because they are neglected in almost all the dimensions and aspects of life and it paves the way for the negative impact that discourage them to take an active part in the progression of the country. In a nutshell, the children of California face social, economic, health economic and psychological issues, without any way out that can act as life support for them (Light, et al 2017).
After an exegetical analysis of the lifestyle and treatment of immigrants in California, it is highlighted that it is not just immigrant families who are suffering but immigrant students are facing more torment. Educational realms are less of enlightenment resources and more of torture cell for students that keep on reminding them of their past, unacceptance and the negative impact that they can cast on the others. All the issues discussed are thought-provoking and demand quick action because students are the ultimate key to future success but when a majority of the student are immigrants and then they are deprived than the situation is a clear emblem of destruction and dire need of reforms that can ensure assimilation and cooperation.
Feliciano, C., & Rumbaut, R. G. (2019). The evolution of ethnic identity from adolescence to middle adulthood: The case of the immigrant second generation. Emerging Adulthood, 7(2), 85-96.
Gándara, P. (2019). The students we share: falling through the cracks on both sides of the US-Mexico border. Ethnic and Racial Studies, 43(1), 38-59.
Gutiérrez, R. A. (2019). Mexican Immigration to the United States. In Oxford Research Encyclopedia of American History.
Light, I., & Bhachu, P. (2017). Introduction: California immigrants in world perspective. In Immigration and Entrepreneurship (pp. 1-24). Routledge.
Pitti, S. J. (2018). The Devil in Silicon Valley: Northern California, Race, and Mexican Americans. Princeton University Press.
Ropp, S. (2019). The Child and the Latina Immigrant: Reimagining the Southern California Imaginary in Héctor Tobar's The Barbarian Nurseries. Western American Literature, 53(4), 469-495.
Sawyer, A., Rosales, O., Medina, O., & Sawyer, M. T. (2019). Improving schooling outcomes for Latinos in rural California: A critical place-based approach to farmworkers history. Journal of Latinos and Education, 1-14.
von Glascoe, C. A., & Schwartz, N. A. (2019). Bad Lungs/Bad Air: Childhood Asthma and Ecosyndemics among Mexican Immigrant Farmworkers of California's San Joaquin Valley. Human Organization, 78(2), 110-121.
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