A Re-evaluation on racism: how a strong U.S. tradition of anti Mexican sentiment was responsible for the 1930s Mexican repatriation crisis
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SubjectResearch Subject Categories::HUMANITIES and RELIGION::History and philosophy subjects::History subjects::History; Honors Theses; Repatriation; Deportation; Immigration; Great Depression; Racism; Anti-Mexican racism; 20th century
My paper will discuss the events that led to the 1930s Mexican repatriation crisis as well as the social and cultural motivations of racism that allowed for both the local and national government to repatriate around 400,000 Mexicans during 1930-32. The most agreed upon number is 400,000 and that includes lawful U.S. residents, illegal aliens, and Mexican Americans who were U.S. citizens. While it has most often been cited as an outcome of the economic depression during the late 1920s and early 1930s, the specific brand of anti Mexican racism that flourished post 1924 Immigration Act cannot be ignored. By looking at specific case studies, such as the Los Angeles La Placita Raid and repatriation processes in cities like Detroit and Gary, Indiana, I was able to identify a frustration targeted against anyone Mexican, automatically labeled a non-citizen, disguised as economic anxiety. These events and the racism that motivated them cannot be ignored, especially in today’s mindset of ‘America First’.
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