Gomberg Munoz Labor And Legality Essay


Shamory 2

Families and kinship ties are comple and intricately bo!nd into h!man li"e# $he %eb o" "amily connections o"ten proves to be m!lti"aceted eno!gh %itho!t complications o" transnational relationships as seen in '!th (omberg)*!+o,-s Labor and Legality: An .thnography o" a *eican /mmigrant 0et%ork# $he Lions are a connected gro!p o" immigrants "rom the to%n o" L3on *eico# $he *eican immigrants- "amily and kinship net%orks in this ethnography are eamined by thro!gh three main scopes: the !se o" kinship ties in relation to the migration process "amilial relationships internationally bet%een the USA and *eico and intranational relationships#First o" all the migration o" the Lions is based aro!nd "amilial connections o" their kin in *eico and in the USA# /n the ethnography (omberg)*!+o, emphasi,es the bo!nds o" kin that create the path%ay to migration# $he price o" a risky passage over the US)*eico border is high so all o" the Lions %ere monetarily sponsoredby a brother another male kin or a close "riend 4(omberg)*!+o, 2511: 678# Sponsorship allo%s the Lions to make that initial trip across the border that they %o!ld not be able to a9ord on their o%n# itho!t the ties o" kin already in the United States their migration net%ork %o!ld be a slo%er process# Additionally many o" the sponsors take it !nder their obligation to ;nd the ne% immigrant to get a <ob and place to live so that he can pay o9 his debt o%ed# =is ne% ho!sing is o"ten %ith "amily members

1. According to Ruth Gomberg-Muñoz in the ethnography Labor and Legality, there are historical factors that explain Mexican labor migration to the United States; name and describe two historical factors (20 pts). Discuss both the positive and negative positions regarding undocumented migrant and immigrant workers in the U.S. and their impact on U.S. economy as presented by Gomberg-Muñoz (20 pts). Then, give one examples (from the reading) that shows how these positions are much more complex than simply thinking that undocumented immigrants are good or bad for the economy (10 pts). Finally, explain why the author mentions that the perception of Mexican immigrants as hard workers, due to their “culture,” is a way to naturalize their subordination (10 pts). One historical factor was that prior to the Mexican Revolution, President Diaz implemented many neoliberal policies that privatized communal land, giving large portions to few individuals. The uneven distribution of land lead to increased cost of living and lower wages for the laborers. This lead to strikes, where the end result was mass emigration to the US. Facing labor shortages, the US supported the immigration and began to recruit workers to come to the US. Another factor was the Bracero program which was an agreement between the US and Mexico that allowed a large number of temporary workers from Mexico into the US. Through the course of this agreement, Mexican laborers became acculturated to US lifestyle and they built many cross-border relationships with their family in Mexico, leading to a migratory pattern of Mexico-US immigration of undocumented workers. The habit formed by this program still exists today. The Bracero program showed a positive side to immigration because both the Mexican and US economies benefitted. The US received cheap labor from illegal immigrants because they didn’t have to pay health care costs and taxes for them. And many of the immigrants send money back home their families in Mexico, boosting the economy. There are a few commonly used anti – immigration arguments. One being that illegal immigrants cost US taxpayer money in public systems like education, since these undocumented workers are sending their kids to public schools when they don’t pay taxes. Another is that they take away jobs from US citizens, but the jobs these workers fulfill tend to be seen as undesirable jobs for the average US citizen. But this isn’t true for all cases, competition for jobs does exist between US citizens and the immigrants.

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