The Immigration Crucible
How The Policies of Immigration Can Be Seen In The Crucible
The Similarities of Immigration and The Crucible
There is much that can be seen in what happens in the Crucible and what happens when it comes to immigration. Both The Crucible and the immigration policies both represent a setting where a group in power accuse another group of people, even if they are innocent, out of fear and hatred for the accused's possible presence in the community.
Why Immigrate here?
People have been immigrating to the U.S. for most of America's history. Immigrating to U.S. was vitally important for immigrants because they saw an opportunity to obtain a better life in the U.S. than one in their home country which would most likely be impoverished or of a failed government. As stated by Chiamaka Nwosu, Jeanne Batalova, and Gregory Auclair from the Migration policy institute, "Nearly 41 million immigrants lived in the United States in 2012—a historical numeric high for a country that has been a major destination for international migrants throughout its history."(Chiamaka Nwosu, Jeanne Batalova, and Gregory Auclair) Also, explained by Terence P. Jeffery, "However, there are already about 150 million adults living in countries around the world who would migrate to the United States if they could, according to a Gallup survey released on Friday."(Terence P. Jeffery) But many immigrants are unable to move to the U.S with proper documentation because of poverty, so many have to come to the U.S illegally. This has caused many debates dealing with immigration reform, assimilation, separatism, and cultural pluralism.
The Accusations and The Arguments
Many American politicians believed that since the number of immigrants increase dramatically, there should be a crackdown on illegal immigrants that currently live in the U.S. and that there should be more restrict border policies at the border. These ideas are fueled by the fact that many politicians believe that by bringing in immigrants and bringing their cultures and traditions into America will ruin America. As quoted by Bill Ong Hing in "Beyond the Rhetoric of Assimilation and Cultural Pluralism: Addressing the Tension of Separatism and Conflict in an Immigration-Driven Multiracial Society",(Bill Ong Hing) Patrick Buchanan states, "[P]ut[ting] America first... mean[s] our Western heritage is going to be handed down to future generations, not dumped onto some landfill called multiculturalism."(Patrick Buchanan) Buchanan believes that allowing immigrants to integrate into American society will cause the future of America to be compromised by allowing the very culture and traditions of America to change because of the immigrants cultures. The main driving force for the animosity towards illegal immigrants by Americans, however, is that Americans believe that immigrants are "stealing" jobs for U.S. citizens. However, immigrants aren't necessarily stealing jobs. As a matter of fact, as stated by Jeff Jacoby of the Boston Globe, "Immigrants aren’t taking jobs that “belong” to Americans. They are fueling the economic engine that creates more opportunity for everyone, and we would be poorer by far without them."
What Does it have to do with the Crucible?
In the Crucible, there also seems to be an intense fear of allowing witches to integrate into society a well, because the people of Salem believe they are agents of the devil come to wreak havoc on Earth. In Act one of the Crucible, Reverend Hale states, "Have no fear now-we shall find him out if he has come among us, and I mean to crush him utterly if he has shown his face!"(Miller 1043) Here Hale is talking about the Devil, but a similar mentality of how if "they are among us they will be found and crushed" can be seen in the American politicians when it comes to immigrants. Hale and American Politicians such as Patrick Buchanan believe that harmful groups are in society an are out to ruin it, even though immigrants are only looking for better lives, and the accused witches are just normal Christians like everyone else in Salem.
- Hing, Bill Ong. "Volume 81 Issue 4 "Beyond the Rhetoric of Assimilation and Cultural Pluralism: Addressing the Tension of Separatism and Conflict in an Immigration-Driven Multiracial Society"" California Law Review. N.p.: n.p., n.d. N. pag. Print.
- Jacoby, Jeff. "The Stolen Job Myth - The Boston Globe." BostonGlobe.com. N.p., 2 July 2014. Web. 16 Dec. 2014.
- Jeffory, Terence P. "Still the Land of Dreams: 150 Million Want to Immigrate to U.S." CNS News. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Dec. 2014.
- Miller, Arthur. The Crucible: A Play in Four Acts. New York: Viking, 1953. Print.
- Nwosu, Chiamaka, Jeanne Batalova, and Gregory Auclair. "Frequently Requested Statistics on Immigrants and Immigration in the United States." Migrationpolicy.org. N.p., 31 Jan. 2013. Web. 14 Dec. 2014.