• Rich Barlow

    Senior Writer

    Rich Barlow

    Rich Barlow is a senior writer at BU Today and Bostonia magazine. Perhaps the only native of Trenton, N.J., who will volunteer his birthplace without police interrogation, he graduated from Dartmouth College, spent 20 years as a small-town newspaper reporter, and is a former Boston Globe religion columnist, book reviewer, and occasional op-ed contributor. Profile

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There are 6 comments on BU Class Explores the Deportation of 56 Million Latin Americans from the United States over the Last Century

  1. The United States takes in over a million immigrants a year and naturalizes nearly a million immigrants a year. No other country in the world comes close to this.

    But I’m sure these students never learned anything about that.

    (https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2020/08/20/key-findings-about-u-s-immigrants/)

    An unlimited and unchecked flow of labor into a country harms the working class and the working poor and other immigrants. Bernie Sanders even said so in 2015 that open borders are “a Koch brothers idea.” There is nothing unusual about a sovereign nation enforcing its immigration laws, every country in the world does this.

    Further, a nation cannot have unchecked immigration AND be a welfare state. Why is that hard to understand?

    Nolan is pushing grievance nonsense for the far left and poisoning political discourse, which despite what she says, this issue can not be reduced to “racism.” Is that the standard of intellectual rigor at BU?

    1. This is a great summary of the common sense points we’re not allowed to discuss openly and honestly. Let’s repeat the obvious facts for anyone who has been brainwashed by the propaganda that the US is racist or xenophobic toward immigrants: whether legal or illegal, this country has taken in by far the most oppressed and impoverished people from all over the world than any other country in the world. It is true that there have recently been examples of other countries accepting a huge number of immigrants (EU during the Syrian civil war, Colombia accepting 2 million Venezuelan’s) but these are extreme exceptions that happen for a relatively short period then the doors close. Whereas the US takes in hundreds of thousand of people every single year … for decades. There is no other country that comes close to that number of people over an extended period of time. And no other country comes close to the welcoming immigration policy. These are just plain facts that can be checked by anyone who cares to look into it.

      There is though one legitimate caveat to all of the above that is very much worth exploring: that is to what extent is the US policy historically has been responsible for the conditions in places like central America that drives people to flee their dysfunctional and dangerous home countries. And on that point I think the US might bear some responsibility (for example US support for murderous death squads in El Salvador in the 1980s and 90s). I don’t know to what extent, because I’m no expert and haven’t studied this in detail, but there clearly has been US meddling in central America that has had tragic and destructive results. I don’t know to what extent the consequences are still being felt today or if it is still going on. My guess is it isn’t but I don’t know.

      In addition it might very well be the case that the US can atone for some of that evil with good foreign policy and aide. For instance I heard an interview on NPR about a week ago with a human rights activist from Central America who indicated that recent US policies and aid have really helped to bring down the insane violence in Honduras from 10 years ago. It was the most violent place in the world a decade ago. Today it is still a violent but not nearly to the same extent. Maybe more of that would be the way to go and help prevent creating more refugees fleeing their homes. Seems like this should be an integral part of the immigration debate.

  2. Sorry, not sorry. My family and I did it the right way when we came over from Mexico. We waited in long lines, got our visas approved, waited in long lines, drove to Atlanta or back to Mexico yearly, waited in long lines, kept waiting in long lines, and finally received permanent resident status, then citizenship over 20 years after the process began. All I ask is for others to do it the right way as well and not cheat the system.

    1. Thank you for the uplifting account of your immigration experience. We should celebrate legal immigrants like yourself who follow the laws of the country and settle here without breaking laws and involving media.

      Regrettably, your story does not meet the prevailing sympathies in academia where immigrants from south of the border are thought of as poor (God forbid you ‘had a car”), uneducated and in desperate need of rescue by utopian, privileged academics living from the inflated costs of higher education.

      I am an immigrant myself and a great majority of us do not subscribe to the predominant immigrant victimhood narrative served by media and blindly accepted and supported by today’s higher education elitists.

  3. Great course, Rachel! Students need to know more about the dynamics driving the immigration phenomenon. (Congratulations, also, to Jorge for going through the 20-year process. It’s a good thing that his family had a car to drive back and forth to Atlanta so many times. Presumably they did not feel threats of drug-related violence and could take their time.)

  4. If you think Latinos are the only ones being deported think again. Found this info on KCRA3 News website;

    Europeans comprise about 440,000 of the estimated 11 million people living illegally in the United States, according to the Migration Policy Institute.

    Since just before Trump was elected last November, the U.S. has deported 167,350 foreigners, compared with 240,255 in all of fiscal year 2016. Immigrants from Latin America make up the most by far, with Mexico leading the way at about 93,000.

    Among Europeans, Romanians make up the largest share, with 193 deportations so far in fiscal year 2017. Behind are Spain at 117; the United Kingdom at 102; Russia at 81; and Poland at 74. Those countries were also tops last fiscal year; Romania had 176, United Kingdom 160, Poland 160, Spain 115 and Russia 94.

    More at this link;

    https://www.kcra.com/article/immigration-crackdown-leads-to-deportations-of-europeans/10288871

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