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Model Minority In America

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Model Minority In America
There are many ideas and assumptions surrounding how the “model minority”, or the Chinese in America came to be. Coined in 1966 by sociologist William Peterson, the term "model minority" was first articulated in an article entitled "Success Story: Japanese American Style" in the New York Times (Peterson, 1966). The immigration of the Chinese to America and how they became the model minority in an age of discrimination while surpassing African Americans is worth learning. I feel it’s important to review the immigration and legal history.
Starting in the 1850s, the first major wave of Asians came to the continental United States. Owners looked to the Asian population to fill an increasing demand for labor in, and on the Transcontinental Railroad,
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The increase in population was growing and the blacks so condensed that some feared for the future and safety of the white people. (Barkan, 2004). In the early 1900s Thousands of Koreans migrated to Hawaii, Filipinos after 1898, migrated to Hawaii as well. In the early 1900s Chinese workers came to the United States to work during the gold rush in the mines, they also looked for factory work, especially in the garment sector and farming jobs. Chinese immigrants were integral in building the railroads in the west, and as such a number of them became independently wealthy. The more the Chinese infringed on the American worker the angrier the Americans became. This finally resulted in legislation called. The Chinese Exclusion Act that aimed to limit future immigration of Chinese workers to the United States. With laborers protesting low wages and the rift between the different immigrants groups forced plantation owners to get even more labor from different Asian countries to keep wages low. (Ninkovitch, 2017) US Congress passed the Chinese Exclusion Act in 1882, which originally was intended to be in place for 10 years, but was made permanent in 1902. The Chinese Exclusion Act was the first …show more content…
migration policies. Although this law was repealed in 1943, little Chinese immigration was allowed to work until the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965. This overhauled the U.S. immigration system and significantly expanded migration opportunities for non-European immigrants including the Chinese. After the exclusion laws, existing immigrants were also restricted from agricultural labor, and as jobs became limited, they increasingly looked for positions as laundry workers, store and restaurant owners, traders, merchants, and wage laborers. They ran in their own circles and lived amongst each other in congested areas like Chinatowns established in California, New York and across the country. At this time, Asian immigrants still continued to face racial discrimination and the height was during WWII when hundreds of thousands of Japanese Americans were jailed in internment camps. The Act of 1965 represents a significant moment in Asian American history. It wasn’t until these very restrictive immigration policies were lifted that would cause people from all over the world to want to call America home. In 1966, then-Assistant Secretary of Labor Daniel Patrick Moynihan defended his controversial claim

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