Both Are Right

The juxtaposition of reading both “Safety through Immigration Control” by Mark Krikorian and “Not Your Homeland” by Edwidge Danticat together makes the reader want to separate Krikorian as an essay against immigration and Danticat as an essay for it. However, this implies that the two essays disagree when really neither essay’s argument directly conflicts with the other. Rather, each is advocating for different aspects to the same subject (immigration). This opens up the possibility for both to have their way, no compromise necessary. Krikorian writes about immigration as the greatest threat to homeland security and advocates for “an immigration system designed for homeland security [to] apply to all stages in the process: issuing visas overseas, screening people at the borders and airports, and enforcing the rules inside the country.” Danticat never disagrees with these ideas in her essay concerning immigration in America. Instead, the main focus of “Not Your Homeland” is how immigrants are treated in America. Danticat writes about how immigrants from Haiti are many times sent straight to prison once they enter the United States. That these individuals are not, and have never been, criminals and how they merely seek to find refuge in the states and instead are imprisoned and abused. Danticat does not say that all immigrants should be allowed into America, her main focus is how many are unfairly treated while they are here. If America was to follow Krikorian’s guideline for an immigration system they could easily treat immigrants respectfully as well. Homeland security does not need to beat or imprison immigrants in order to not allow them into the country.

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One Response to Both Are Right

  1. I agree with graphophobiia that in some ways Krikorian’s essay “Safety Through Immigration Control” and Danticat’s essay “Not Your Homeland” do not conflict with one another. Graphophobiia makes some excellent points when it comes to the differences in the two arguments. While Krikorian argues that immigration laws need to be stricter in order to protect our country from terrorism, Danticat argues that the actual treatment of those who do immigrate (even illegally) needs to be much better. Krikorian never mentions anything about the way immigrants are treated, and Danticat never outright states that the actual immigration laws are unfair. However, I believe that there are also some ideas that do conflict. In her essay, Danticat also talks about the desperate situations that so many immigrants have come from. In many cases, the reason that these people are trying to immigrate to America is because they are trying to escape from the violence and poverty of their own countries. Immigrants are looking to start a new life in America, and Danticat argues that we should consider the desperate situations of these people, let them into our country, and treat them with respect. Although Danticat never says so directly, she seems to be arguing for looser immigration laws–which conflicts directly with Krikorian’s argument. By telling the story of her uncle, Danticat argues that us Americans really have not considered the true desperation of those who are trying to immigrate. For the most part, those who are trying to immigrate into America are not doing so because they wish to harm the country. Rather, they are doing so out of pure desperation in hopes that they might possibly find a better life for themselves and for their families in America. According to Danticat, shutting off immigrants in need is not the right thing to do. Isn’t it understandable that these people would want to escape from violence and poverty? I know nearly every American citizen would try to do the same for themselves and for their families if they were in a similar situation. While Krikorian argues for stricter immigration laws, Danticat seems to be leaning towards the opposite approach. Until people can find peace and prosperity in their own countries, there is going to be a continued push for immigration into the U.S. We should not push desperate people out of our country because they might be a “threat to national security”. Because in almost every case, these people are men, women, and children just like ourselves, without the tremendous fortune of being born in America.

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