Migration of people to the United States of America in the 1900’s

Japanese Baseball in Santa Barbara

Baseball helped the Japanese to divert their attention from the injustices and discriminatory treatment which they received from the Native Americans. They were able to merge their bi-cultural nature and retrieve maximum benefit from it, that is, borrow the good cultural practices of the Americans to make their inhabitation in America more conducive (Takaki, 2012).

The formation of the multi-racial team by Setsou Aratani helped to bring together people of different races. This team though criticized by some members of the national baseball league emerged victorious winning three consecutive league titles.

Abiko Kyutaro

Abiko Kyutaro was a Japanese import activist who was raised by his grandparents. When he became of age, Abiko ran away from his home to Tokyo to become a Christian. He viewed his fellow Japanese as sojourners who did not care about the conditions they were living in as long as they made money. Abiko observed that this character encouraged the Native Americans to develop a negative attitude towards them.

Abiko encouraged the Japanese to become farmers, businesspeople and settle for raising families. To that effect, he bought a 3200acre land and sold it to the Japanese who eventually formed the Yamato colony. Through Abiko’s efforts, the Japanese were able to settle down in America and finally were able to become successful especially as farmers (Takaki, 2012).

Gentleman’s Agreement

Under this agreement, the Japanese government agreed to prohibit the emigration of laborers from Japan. This treaty recognized the power of Japan and allowed it to regulate its emigrants. It also allowed the family members of the emigrants to migrate to America.

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The Gentleman’s Agreement came as a result of the discrimination the Japanese began to face due to the success in farming. The Japanese children in America were barred from attending the normal schools as other American children, hence, denying them the right to equal education. Theodore Roosevelt, the then American president, came forward to point out the significant role the Japanese had played in the war against the Russians and that they deserved to be treated equally as the Germans and the English.

Clara Lemlich

Clara was a Jewish cloth making worker who stirred up the 1908 strike by coming out boldly to talk about the harsh working conditions in the clothing industries and also how their bosses mistreated them. Through Clara’s efforts and the efforts of her fellow workmates, the strike helped to bring into limelight the terrible working conditions to the American public.

1908 and 1920 HI Strikes

The 1908 and 1920 HI strikes came about as a result of the harsh working conditions in the cloth making industries. They were of great significance especially to the working population because their complaints would be heard and addressed. Many of the workers were even motivated to quit their jobs as a way to demonstrate against the harsh working conditions (Takaki, 2012).

The strikes also motivated the formation of a civil rights organization that helped to defend the rights of the working population.

Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo

Under the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo the Mexicans were eligible for American citizenship unlike the Chinese and the Japanese. As a result of this treaty, the Mexicans were able to relocate easily and settle in America.

Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire

This fire took place in 1911 and killed 146 workers out of the 800 people who were working in the factory. Most of the workers in this factory were women. After this fire, the American public was made aware of the harsh working conditions that were faced by the workers in the cloth making industry.

Ozawa vs. the United States

It was a case of Ozawa against the state whereby Ozawa sued for American citizenship status. He was highly assimilated speaking English at home with his family. However, the Supreme Court ruled that although he was in every way qualified to be an American, he was not white, hence, the court ruled against him.

Comparison between the Experiences of the Jews in New York and the Mexicans in California and Texas

Origin

The Jewish had been refugees in Russia. They faced discrimination and inhuman treatment living among the Russians. The Russian officials encouraged acts of injustice against them. These acts included the use of force. Eventually, the Jews realized that Russia was not their home, and they had to move out.

On the other hand, the Mexican immigrants in America were originally from Mexico. Their migration to America was as a result of their land being taken over by American companies for investment in cotton and coffee. These Mexicans were peasants who were forced to migrate to the cities in Mexico and eventually into America (Takaki, 2012).

Flows

The letters from immigrants in America gave the Jews in Russia thoughts of migrating there in pursuit of a better life. The immigrants described how life there was so conducive and even compared it to the Garden of Eden in the Bible. These letters gave the Jews in Russia a message of hope and lured them into migrating to America.

Flows of Mexicans into America are explained using two theories. Firstly, there is the Network theory. This theory suggests that people will always go where their relatives or fellow villagers live. Therefore, other peasant Mexicans migrated to join their families and relatives.

Another theory that explains the flows of Mexicans is the chain theory. This theory suggests that man comes first, and then sends for his family.

Economic Incorporation

On arrival in America, some Jews began as peddlers selling fruits, fish and second-hand stuff. Later on most of them ventured into cloth making as they had sewing skills. Before the arrival of the Jews, only the rich could afford tailor-made clothes while the working class wore plain clothes. However, the Jews democratized dressing and made available to the masses tailor-made clothes at cheaper prices. The biggest challenge they faced in this business were poor working conditions that forced the workers to go on strikes. The 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist fire that led to the death of 146 workers happened also due to the poor working conditions.

In the case of the Mexicans, those in Texas ventured into the construction industry. Those in Los Angeles went into blue-collar jobs while others managed to get into white collar jobs. The Mexican women went into the garment industry, food processing and canneries. Both, men and women from Mexico were at the bottom of the dual labor market (Takaki, 2012).

Settlement

The Jews settled in the lower east side of New York, which was also inhabited by the German Jews. The area was densely populated with poor housing structures where four people lived per room. Besides, the rooms had very poor ventilation and were death traps since no one would be able to escape in case of fire.

As a result of the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, the Mexicans were able to settle easily in America since they were eligible to be American citizens as per the treaty. Most of the immigrants settled in California, Texas, Arizona, and Illinois.

Socio Political-Adaptation

The Jews hunger drove them into working harder every day and, as a result, they postponed other pleasures. They are said to have postponed even the sexual pleasures in order to focus on making money. They had placed high value on religious education and learning, hence, pleasure to them was out of topic.

After the strikes that brought into limelight the harsh working conditions of the cloth making workers, the Jews formed a civil movement that was meant to defend the rights of these workers.

In the case of the Mexicans, their employers limited their mobility by ensuring that they did not own cars. The employers ensured that they kept Mexicans in debt so that they could work even harder to pay off their debts. The workers went on strikes demanding better pay and better working conditions and even formed a workers union to represent their views.

Segregation of the Mexicans in America was so rampant, for instance, they were expected to maintain a respectable body posture and a respectable tone when speaking to the whites. They were also not allowed to sit and eat at the same table with white land owners. Moreover, there were specific restaurants for them. These were referred to as “for the colored people” (Takaki, 2012).

The Role of Race and Ethnicity in their respective Economic Incorporation, Settlement, Adaptation- Acts of Resistance and Community Formation- and Situation of American-born Second Generation

All the immigrants to America played a key role in the sectors they penetrated. To begin with, regarding economic incorporation, the Japanese were able to thrive well in the agricultural sector to an extent that they were seen as a threat by the white Americans. The Jews were able to democratize the clothing industry by making available the tailor-made clothes to the masses. It is critical to point out that before the Jews the tailor-made clothes were afforded only by the rich while the working class could afford only plain clothes. Besides, the Mexicans promoted the economic sector by providing a cheaper source of labor to the agricultural and construction sector.

The immigrants could not settle in alien lands -America- without facing any opposition from the natives. For example, the Japanese children were barred from attending school with white children of their age. The movement of the Mexicans was also restricted as they were not allowed to own cars. To counter this discrimination, the immigrants formed civil organizations and organized strikes to get their grievances heard by the relevant authorities. They were finally heard, but their complaints were not fully addressed (Takaki, 2012).

The immigrants were not able to occupy the best places in America for settlement. However, they were able to make use of the places they settled to their maximum satisfaction. For instance, the Japanese formed the Yamato colony where they lived in families and as Christians. The Jews settled on the lower east side of New York, which was characterized by a high population density, poverty, and untidiness. Their settlement was compared to the places they lived before in Russia as they lived in lodges and groups of four people. It is notable to point out that people who lived in the same districts in Russia occupied the same places in America. The Mexicans settled in California and Texas. They migrated into America in portions so that the communities were formed in regards to family ties. Some of the Mexican immigrants moved to America to join their families and relatives who had arrived earlier. It can be said that the overall effect of the immigrants settling in America was to increase the population but on the positive side bring along with them an ample source of labor and increase the economic productivity.

The American-born second generation of immigrants was able to live a relatively better life as compared to the first generation. For them, education was the key to opportunities in the alien land. The ability to understand English properly would help them to enable the white Americans to know more about their culture. Take for example the second generation of the Japanese. This generation was known as the Nisei. They were urged by the first generation to learn the English language and pass on their culture to the white Americans to find tolerance from them. However, even after all the effort they had put to be accepted, they were still discriminated. Landowners could not rent and to them no matter how long they had stayed in America. Also, discrimination concerning the places they could go was very rampant. The Mexicans for instance, could not buy goods from any shops except for those designated to them. Also, they could not eat in any restaurants except those labeled, “for colored people.” (Takaki, 2012).

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