With the recent buzz surrounding United States immigration, it’s important that citizens stay up to date with their immigration information, to avoid legal trouble or insensitive commentary. If you have dual citizenship, have entered the country illegally, or are just behind on your facts, here’s a brief guide to what you need to know about immigration and where it stands in America today.
The past – The United States were founded as a nation of immigrants, traveling from many different countries to begin a new life in a new land. Settlers from European countries came to America to escape religious and political intolerance, and to start a life full of free expression and financial opportunities. Between 1870 and 1930, nearly 30 million immigrants traveled to the U.S., and from 1820 to 1930, the U.S. had absorbed nearly 60% of the world’s immigrants.
The present – Current attitudes towards United States immigration have been unfortunately influenced by uneducated politicians. As a nation of immigrants, the United States has a system in place for the verification and allowance of people from other countries to achieve U.S. citizenship without the need for illegal immigration. Programs like the Diversity Visa lottery were created to allow immigrants from countries with low immigration rates to come to the U.S. Nearly 55,000 visas a year are allocated to random citizens who are from countries with less than 50,000 immigrants sent to the United States in the past 5 years.
The future – Without immigrants, we wouldn’t have a country. The U.S. is one of the places that can grant asylum for people facing religious persecution in other countries, and can offer assistance in refugee matters. In order to keep the United States consistent with the values that it preaches, it’s essential for people to know about what role immigration plays in our nation’s history, and how we can keep it a free nation.