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Punishing Immigrants

Punishing Immigrants: Policy, Politics, and Injustice

Charis E. Kubrin
Marjorie S. Zatz
Ramiro Martínez
Copyright Date: 2012
Published by: NYU Press
Pages: 276
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt9qgjc8
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  • Book Info
    Punishing Immigrants
    Book Description:

    Arizona's controversial new immigration bill is just the latest of many steps in the new criminalization of immigrants. While many cite the presumed criminality of illegal aliens as an excuse for ever-harsher immigration policies, it has in fact been well-established that immigrants commit less crime, and in particular less violent crime, than the native-born and that their presence in communities is not associated with higher crime rates. Punishing Immigrants moves beyond debunking the presumed crime and immigration linkage, broadening the focus to encompass issues relevant to law and society, immigration and refugee policy, and victimization, as well as crime. The original essays in this volume uncover and identify the unanticipated and hidden consequences of immigration policies and practices here and abroad at a time when immigration to the U.S. is near an all-time high. Ultimately, Punishing Immigrants illuminates the nuanced and layered realities of immigrants' lives, describing the varying complexities surrounding immigration, crime, law, and victimization.

    eISBN: 978-0-8147-4904-3
    Subjects: Sociology

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
    (pp. vii-viii)
  4. 1 Introduction
    (pp. 1-14)
    CHARIS E. KUBRIN, MARJORIE S. ZATZ and RAMIRO MARTÍNEZ JR.

    Most scholarly research on immigration and crime has focused on a subset of questions: Are immigrants more crime-prone? Do areas where immigrants reside experience higher crime rates? What are the larger connections between immigration and crime in the United States and abroad? For the most part, these questions have been satisfactorily addressed. Contrary to public opinion, it is now well-established in the scholarly literature that, in fact, immigrants commit less crime, particularly less violent crime, than the native-born and that their presence in communities is not associated with higher crime rates. Consequently, scholars are eager to move beyond the questions:...

  5. PART I: NEW MODES OF CONTROL

    • 2 Panic, Risk, Control: Conceptualizing Threats in a Post-9/11 Society
      (pp. 17-41)
      MICHAEL WELCH

      Since the early 1990s, we have witnessed another round of events that contribute to a historical pattern of punishing immigrants. In the wake of the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center and again following the attack on September 11, 2001, Congress passed tough new laws that essentially scapegoat racial, ethnic, and religious minorities (Welch 2002, 2006a, 2009). Those policies, driven by conservative and populist politics, are not confined to the United States, as similar responses to 9/11 also have taken effect in Europe and Australia (Bosworth and Guild 2008; Grewcock 2009; Melossi 2003; Pickering 2005; Welch and Schuster 2005a,2005b)....

    • 3 Growing Tensions between Civic Membership and Enforcement in the Devolution of Immigration Control
      (pp. 42-61)
      DORIS MARIE PROVINE, MONICA VARSANYI, PAUL G. LEWIS and SCOTT H. DECKER

      Like other nations that are responding to popular pressure to discourage unauthorized immigration, the United States is looking for new ways to step up enforcement. The ever-lengthening wall along the border with Mexico is the most obvious example of this commitment. While the wall incorporates innovative technological features, the enforcement strategy that it represents is familiar. What is new in U.S. immigration enforcement is the push toward formal partnerships between federal immigration authorities and local police. These relationships rely on the more intimate contact of local police with residents to assits in the detection and removal of unauthorized immigrants. Adocates...

    • 4 No Surprises: The Evolutions of Anti-Immigrations Legislation in Arizona
      (pp. 62-88)
      KYRSTEN SINEMA

      On April 23, 2010, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer signed SB 1070, the Support Our Law Enforcement and Safe Neighborhoods Act, into law. Within days, national attention focused on Arizona, with countless pundits, media commentators, and engaged activists from around the country and the world wondering aloud how SB 1070 seemingly appeared out of nowhere. For months following the governor’s approval, national and international media focused on the new law, its implications and impact, and the resulting lawsuits borne from the controversial proposal. Between April and July 2010, national news media discussed SB 1070 nearly every day. For much of the...

  6. Part II: Consequences for Individuals and Communities

    • 5 Unearthing and Confronting the Social Skeletons of Immigration Status in Our Criminal Justice System
      (pp. 91-112)
      EVELYN H. CRUZ

      The need for competent representation of noncitizens¹ in criminal proceedings has never been more critical. As documented extensively in the first section of the volume, in the last 20 years, domestic immigration laws have become more complex and severe. Additionally, the line between criminal proceedings and immigration proceedings has blurred. Today, what is decided in the criminal case may very well seal the noncitizen’s fate in the removal process. And, in the name of efficiency, law enforcement agencies are pressing the judicial system to combine criminal and immigration proceedings into one simultaneous administration in which one tribunal decides both the...

    • 6 The Ruptures of Return: Deportation’s Confounding Effects
      (pp. 113-137)
      M. KARTHLEEN DINGEMAN-CERDA and SUSAN BIBLER COUTIN

      During a 2008 interview conducted in El Salvador, Victor Castillo recounted his experience of deportation from the United States. Victor first migrated with legal documentation to the United States in 1967 at the age of four.¹ After his U.S. citizen stepfather adopted him at the age of eight, Victor assumed that he, too, became a citizen. He grew up in the United States, where he attended school. But when his family moved to a neighborhood where gangs were prevalent, Victor also joined a gang and became addicted to drugs. In 2004, after several drug-related convictions, Victor was stripped of his...

    • 7 Race, Land, and Forced Migration in Darfur
      (pp. 138-156)
      WENONA RYMOND-RICHMOND and JOHN HAGAN

      Tragically, victimization resulting from a genocidal attack continues for survivors long after the attack is over. This has certainly been the case for survivors of the Darfur genocide. Beyond the traumatic experience of genocide itself, Darfur genocide survivors have witnessed further victimization and human rights violations resulting from forced relocation and displacement. Though less apparent, refugees continue to experience ethnic cleansing, rape and sexual assault, and property loss on the journey to and within the camps. Yet forced displacement has not received the same attention as other human rights violations and “often seems to be accepted as a sad but...

  7. PART III: LAYERED REALITIES

    • 8 Situating the Immigration and Neighborhood Crime Relationship across Multiple Cities
      (pp. 159-177)
      MARÍA B. VÉLEZ and CHRISTOPHER J. LYONS

      Since the early waves of immigration into the United States during the late 1800s, the relationship between immigration and neighborhood crime has garnered considerable interest among social scientists and the general public. Although the preponderance of criminological research on the topic during the last century offers little evidence that immigration leads to more crime, until relatively recently, traditional criminological thinking nonetheless held that the presence of immigrants should increase neighborhood crime. Traditional criminological theory contended that immigrants bring deviant and pro-crime orientations to neighborhoods, disrupt social networks and social cohesion among residents, or place strain upon local service institutions (see...

    • 9 Immigrant Inclusion and Prospects through Schooling in Italy: An Analysis of Emerging Regional Patterns
      (pp. 178-206)
      PAOLA BERTOLINI and MICHELE LALLA

      Education is one of the primary means of integrating immigrant youth into their host country, and it is an important precursor of later economic success. Yet how and in what contexts immigrant youth are best able to draw on education to improve their future prospects is a multi-layered issue requiring micro and macro levels of analysis. For example, in Italy there is evidence that the crime rate is higher among the less educated population: what are the factors affecting dropout rates and potentially increasing crime levels? How do the characteristics of both parents (i.e., their eduction levels. labour force participation...

    • 10 Social Stressors, Special Vulnerabilities, and Violence Victimization among Latino Immigrant Day Laborers in Post-Katrina New Orleans
      (pp. 207-231)
      ALICE CEPEDA, NALINI NEGI, KATHRYN NOWOTNY, JAMES ARANGO, CHARLES KAPLAN and AVELARDO VALDEZ

      Hurricane Katrina is considered one of most costly and devastating storms ever to occur in the United States (Elliott and Pais 2006). The storm left an estimated $156 billion in damages in 49 counties in southern Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana. In New Orleans, the storm surge overpowered the levee system, causing breaches that flooded more than 80 percent of the city. Reports indicate that more than 1,800 people lost their lives during the storm as a result of being trapped by the rising water. Moreover, the magnitude of the residential and commercial structural damage in New Orleans was devastating owing...

  8. 11 Conclusion
    (pp. 232-244)
    MARJORIE S. ZATZ, CHARIS E. KUBRIN and RAMIRO MARTÍNEZ JR.

    On January 28, 2011, Representative John Kavanagh (R) filed House Bills 2561 and 2562 in the Arizona House of Representatives. These bills and their senate counterparts (Senate Bills 1308 and 1309) would deny citizenship to children born in the United States if at least one parent is not a U.S. citizen, U.S. national, or legal permanent U.S. resident. A coalition of lawmakers from 13 other states has joined Arizona in efforts to negate the automatic citizenship granted to children born in the United States under the Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution. According to Representative Kavanagh, “it’s irresponsible and foolish to...

  9. ABOUT THE CONTRIBUTORS
    (pp. 245-250)
  10. INDEX
    (pp. 251-263)