Chinese Exclusion Act - Cartoon uit 1886 met als ondertitel 'The Chinese Must Go'. Uncle Sam schopt de Chinezen het land uit

Chinese Exemption Act (1882) | Historic

MAnd Chinese Exemption Law (Form 1882 Immigration Act) On May 6, 1882, the United States ended its immigration to China. It was the first major federal law prohibiting immigration to the United States for a particular nationality.

Chinese Exemption Act of 1882

In the decades leading up to the enactment of this law, millions of immigrants came to the United States. However, in the course of the nineteenth century, the call to control this settlement increased. This is partly due to the arrival of a new type of immigrant who was very difficult to ‘Americanize’. Initially, immigrants were mainly from Great Britain and Western Europe. This immigration caused relatively few problems and greatly benefited the United States. New Americans were relatively young, often spoke English, complained little, and were willing to work hard, even when working conditions were not very favorable. Many of them were attracted to the United States by large corporations, including railroad companies, which gave them a future full of growth and independence. America’s new “land of milk and honey”.

However, in the decades leading up to 1882, more and more immigrants came from southern Europe, including many Italians, Greeks, Croats and Slovaks. Their arrival caused more problems. Many of these immigrants were relatively poor, illiterate, and lived in poor areas of congested cities after arriving in the United States. The arrival of poor and incompetent Irish and Chinese working-class immigrants also aroused emotions. On the West Coast, for example, many American workers believed that wages had fallen due to the arrival of cheap Chinese workers. In addition, they accused the Chinese of breaking up the strikes.

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The first groups of Chinese arrived in the United States in 1820. They were very popular among the bosses. The Chinese worked hard, and for little money. In some places, due to this labor migration, especially in the 1960s, the number of Chinese increased sharply in a short period of time. For example, in 1865, Chinese immigrants settled in Boise, the capital of the US state of Idaho. Five years later, one-third of the immigrants in the state of Idaho already had a Chinese background, and nearly 60 percent of the miners were Chinese. The number of Chinese immigrants also increased elsewhere, although the share of Chinese in the total population was as low as 0.002 percent.

Due to the influx of immigrants, the population has increased tremendously nationally in these years. The U.S. population in 1880 was 50 million, an increase of 10 million from a decade ago. In 1882, due to the arrival of new immigrants, the population increased by about 2,000 every day.

The difference

Many ‘old Americans’ felt that they were more associated with European immigrants – they were not always welcomed with open arms – and were often seen as inferior to Asian newcomers. The difference between Europeans and Chinese was also reflected in the law. U.S. governments have sought to restrict the rights of Asians through various constitutions. For example, the Oregon Constitution of 1857 prohibited Chinese from owning real estate, and California law stated that Chinese immigrants were not allowed to testify in court. In the California case known against the people. Hall, which was reaffirmed in 1854. In this case, the Chinese people are described as …

“… the race of human beings who have identified with the inferiority complex of nature, as their history has shown, is incapable of progress or intellectual development beyond a certain point.” These facts – Jill Lepor (p. 375)

A thorn in the side of Americans who considered the Chinese to be “inferior” and “pagan”, children of Chinese immigrants were automatically granted U.S. citizenship when they were born on American soil. It was regulated in the Fourteenth Amendment, and there are no racial restrictions on this rule. Instead of the melting pot of nations, America became a “garbage” in the eyes of so-called “old Americans,” who were outraged by the arrival of Europeans and criminals.

Chinese immigrants often had a difficult time. Many were hired to work in the gold mines or railroads of California. They worked hard and for little money and faced racism in the United States. During an economic crisis in the 1870s, the Chinese were regularly attacked during the riots. The “unreconciled Chinese” were attacked by angry white Americans. There were also voices demanding an end to immigration from China at this time. However, employers who took full advantage of the cheap labor force were initially able to prevent this.

The 1882 political cartoon shows a Chinese refusing to enter the United States
The 1882 political cartoon shows a Chinese refusing to enter the United States

Chinese exemption law en jeri law

Chinese gold miners in California
Chinese gold miners in California

However, in 1882, immigration from China ceased. In California, in particular, people worked hard for this stop because many Chinese workers were attracted there. The Chinese Exemption Act suspended immigration from China for ten years. U.S. President Chester A. Arthur signed the law on May 6, 1882. An amendment to the law soon imposed that Chinese immigrants temporarily returning to China could not return to the United States.

Legislation is considered a key point in the United States’ handling of immigration. Until then the United States had the image of a “land of unlimited possibilities” and was known as a place to welcome all immigrants and a place where everyone could become an American.

In 1892, the so-called Jiri Act was extended to ten years. The strings were pulled even tighter. The Chinese on American soil must now always have identification documents. Anyone who could not show these documents was at risk of deportation. The Chinese Exemption Act was renewed a second time in 1902, and in 1904 the immigration ban became permanent.

Repeal of the law

With the enactment of the Magnuson Act, the Act was repealed in 1943. From that moment on, immigration from China was possible again, albeit on a much smaller scale. Up to 105 immigrants from China are welcomed each year. Allocations were also introduced for immigrants from other nations.

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-The United States – Jill Lepor (pp. 68, 70)
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-These facts – Jill Lepor
Brief American History – John von Otiston (Bert Bucker, 2009) – pp. 68-69
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Chronicle of Humanity – Art Arsbergen e – p. 928

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