All the readings from class have proved that America has a rich history of discrimination and disdain for those who are “different”. Unfortunately, this prejudice is not behind us. Anti-immigrant sentiment is very prevalent in the United States. This intolerance can be seen through the anti-immigrant laws being proposed around the country, the most recent being Alabama’s HB 56.
This law, HB 56, is the most oppressive anti-immigrant law to date in the United States. This goal of this law is to make every aspect of undocumented immigrants lives difficult. Provisions of this law force police to check the immigration status of any person pulled over for a routine traffic stop if the officer has any suspicion that the person may be undocumented, essentially forcing the officers to racially profile. Undocumented immigrants are also forbidden to get driver’s licenses, pay utility bills, rent an apartment or enter in any deal with the state. In some cases this means that they can’t pay their electricity or water bills because it would require them to show their papers. If arrested they are to be held without bail. Many parents are worried that they might randomly disappear and have made other arrangements for their children in the event of their disappearance. Thankfully, many provisions of this law are being held up in court. Regardless, the law has been successful in inspiring fear in undocumented immigrants across the state.
Not only is discrimination engrained in this countries history, but so is the question of who has the right to be here. It is important to learn about the history of settlers/indigenous interactions because, like most of history, it has relevance in contemporary times. Just like the colonists, immigrants to the United States are looking for more opportunities and ultimately a better future.