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Alternative Histories and Minorities in Times of War - Essay Example

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Name: Course: Instructor: Date: Discrimination of Minorities in Times of War and Migration Human beings are definitely prone to defining their identities in terms of collective aspects that are usually influenced by certain factors. Inconsistencies and differences that emerge on such occasions result in chaos, controversies and disregard for other people…
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Alternative Histories and Minorities in Times of War
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Alternative Histories and Minorities in Times of War

Download file to see previous pages... Whereas others moved to these foreign lands willingly, others were forced into immigration due to famine, search for opportunities, and slavery. The interaction of foreigners and locals, thus, results into controversies or good relations depending on the extent of established social norms in a particular place. Locals may dislike certain qualities and implications that result from these interactions and this has a negative impact on the well-being of an immigrant. Also, the activities of racial or religious groups that identify with certain immigrants may lead discrimination locally, and abroad. For instance, the 911 attacks led to the discrimination of Arab Americans, and the subsequent attacks on several countries in the Middle East including Iraq (Armaney, 5). As much as these minorities may become recognized as citizens of a particular country, historical inclinations towards the prevailing differences have never been eliminated completely. This implies that constitutions and other agreements that seek to protect the welfare of the people have never been quite effective, despite having good intentions. It is, therefore, evident that uncertain events like wars and immigration are likely to fuel the possibility of discrimination against minorities for a variety of reasons. Immigration trends, especially into America, all have some similarities in terms of the immigrants’ experiences. One conspicuous case of immigration experiences during the 19th century is embodied in the movement of the Irish into America. In 1845, Irish potato fields were attacked by a fungus and this resulted in a devastating famine (Scroth, 5). It caused the deaths of 2.5 million citizens and subsequently led to several crop failures by 1951. Between these periods a mass exodus ensued and Irish people began streaming into America. They came in millions and most of them were poor, disillusioned, and malnourished. Just like many other immigrants, they believed that America was the land of opportunities and also a solution to all their problems. However, they failed to know that this marked the beginning of a dangerous journey. The trips took 3 months and the conditions in the vessels were intolerable (Dolan 8). Food was scarce and families were heaped together in the vessels with insufficient air and light. Beddings were dirty and the rough conditions resulted in the branding of the vessels as coffin ships. Once they arrived in America, the immigrants were met with even more chaos. No official reception areas were present and immigrants were also sold tickets that led to wrong destinations. Increased fraud led to the establishment of Castle Garden station in 1855 and investigations on the abuses took course. Immigrants also had to wait for two days since Ellis Island could not serve more than 5000 people in a single day. At the dock they underwent medical examination and those suspected to have serious illnesses were marked with chalk for further medical examination (Dolan 12). A failure in the examinations meant that the immigrant would get deported. They also had to answer questions about their intelligence, amount of money possessed, and other seemingly ridiculous questions that they never understood. Living conditions in the US also proved to be harsh as they lived in crowded rooms and received little wages for lots of work. As a result, epidemics like typhoid, tuberculosis and diarrhea were ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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