By Victor C. Romero
Throughout American historical past, the govt has used U.S. citizenship and immigration legislations to guard privileged teams from much less privileged ones, utilizing citizenship as a “legitimate” proxy for in a different way invidious, and sometimes unconstitutional, discrimination at the foundation of race. whereas racial discrimination is never legally appropriate this present day, profiling at the foundation of citizenship continues to be mostly unchecked, and has actually arguably elevated within the wake of the September eleven terror assaults at the usa. during this considerate exam of the intersection among American immigration and constitutional legislation, Victor C. Romero attracts our recognition to a “constitutional immigration legislation paradox” that reserves convinced rights for U.S. electorate merely, whereas concurrently purporting to regard each person really below constitutional legislations despite citizenship.
As a naturalized Filipino American, Romero brings an outsider's standpoint to Alienated, forcing us to examine constitutional immigration legislations from the vantage aspect of individuals whose citizenship prestige is murky (either legally or from the point of view of alternative electorate and lawmakers), together with foreign-born adoptees, undocumented immigrants, travelers, overseas scholars, and same-gender bi-national companions. Romero endorses an equality-based examining of the structure and advocates a brand new theoretical and useful technique that protects the person rights of non-citizens with out sacrificing their personhood.
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Additional resources for Alienated : immigrant rights, the constitution, and equality in America
In the preceding section, I questioned the wisdom of deferring to federal political branches whose view of the Equality for All as a Constitutional Mandate | 17 dangerous or undesirable foreigner may be based less on reality than on false perception. Regardless of how one answers the foregoing question, I suggest that the Constitution generally requires the protection of those most vulnerable to unfair treatment. The equal protection guarantees of the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments46 require the government to treat all “persons,” not just citizens, equally.
43 Perhaps even more interesting will be the extent to which other out-groups find themselves collaterally affected by stricter immigration norms justified ostensibly by national security concerns. Might undocumented immigration, for example, resurface as a federal concern as it did during the Depression and post–World War II years, this time recast not as a mere border control concern but as an antiterrorism issue? ”45 Narratives and Extralegal Perspectives: Why Upholding Equal Treatment Is Important Despite its problematic treatment of racial and political outsiders, the traditional legal analysis of constitutional immigration law yields a logical policy argument in favor of strong federal congressional and executive power over immigration, supported by the Constitution’s text and the Supreme Court’s precedent.
For example, if the United States declares war on Iran, it might make sense to 36 | Immigrants and the War on Terrorism after 9/11 exclude all Iranian citizens from immigrating to the United States, not just for our own citizens’ security, but for theirs as well. But what should our immigration laws say when the object of our foreign policy is not another nation, but a multinational guerrilla movement such as al-Qaeda? How does the United States balance its national security concerns against fair treatment of the individual noncitizens affected by its immigration laws?