Volume 12

Immigration Policy as a Defense of White Nationhood

by Juan F. Perea

President Trump has declared war on undocumented immigrants. Attempting to motivate his voters before the 2018 mid-term elections, President Trump sought to sow fear by escalating his anti-immigrant rhetoric. Trump labeled a caravan of Central American refugees seeking asylum as an “invasion” and a “crisis” that demanded, in his view, the use of military troops to defend the U.S. border with Mexico. When the caravan arrived, the border patrol used tear gas on the refugees, including mothers with infant children. Trump also referred to undocumented immigrants as criminals, rapists, and gang members who pose a direct threat to the welfare of “law-abiding” people. Despite the imagery of invasion, crisis, and crime disseminated by President Trump, undocumented immigrants pose no such threats.

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