Chinese Exclusion Act 1882 Essay Research Paper

Chinese Exclusion Act 1882 The Chinese Exclusion Act was passed in 1882. The Chinese Exclusion Act was not passed because of fear of increasing population the United States. It was passed because of racism. It was

Chinese Exclusion Act 1882 Essay, Research Paper

Chinese Exclusion Act 1882

The Chinese Exclusion Act was passed in 1882. The

Chinese Exclusion Act was not passed because of fear of increasing

population the United States. It was passed because of racism. It was

also passed because Americans were scared of losing their jobs.

Chinese were sought for jobs in mines and railroads. Racial tensions

increased as more and more Chinese emigrated, occupied jobs, and

created competition for jobs.

The Chinese came to America in search of opportunities.

Others fled China because of economic problems. The Gold Rush

happened during a period of poverty in China, which encouraged the

Chinese to emigrate to the US. In California, the Chinese newcomers

soon became an exploited work force, especially since they were

predominantly male, but the wages they received in the economy were

better then the ones they received in China . Many

Chinese became miners, and some developed the laundry business.

Owners of the Southern Pacific Railroad, who sought to complete the

transcontinental railroad, imported thousands of Chinese because they

were patient and cheap.

Opposition in California was both immediate and strong.

During the Gold Rush, thousands of Americans from the East, began

to have nativists attitudes. Also non- American whites, who had

suffered from Eastern nativism, attacked the Chinese in order to

elevate their status. Many Chinese immigrants faced discrimination

from many different groups. American miners felt that the hard-

working and low- paid Chinese were reducing their wages. Americans

claimed that jobs were scarce, and that the Chinese were stealing their

only jobs. The Americans also believed that the Chinese were sending

too much gold back to China. They believed the wealth should stay in

the United States. The Chinese were considered strangers. They

remained with their own kind and were very productive. Immigration

taxes and laundry-operation fees, were passed in order to limit the

success of the Chinese workers. Cartoons and propaganda

demonstrated hate toward the Chinese. Some slogans reinforced the

view that Chinese “worked cheap and smelled bad”

Even though Chinese people were discriminated,

immigration was still in progress. Many Chinese felt that their

opportunities were still better than in China. Efforts were made to ban

Chinese immigration, and a bill was passed in 1879. It was vetoed, by

President Hayes, because it violated the Burlingame Treaty. In 1882,

The Chinese Exclusion Act banned the immigration of Chinese

laborers for 10 years. The population of the Chinese emigrating into

the US, decreased from 61, 711 to 14, 799. Teachers, merchants,

students, and visitors were exempt from the act. The Chinese

Exclusion Act created many problems due to different interpretations

of the law and the inability for port officials to make or get quick,

clear decisions. After the ten years were up, a new treaty was made in

which China agreed to exclusion of Chinese laborers for ten years. In

1906, earthquake fires detroyed all family records, and the Chinese

found a chance to use false names and identities, and came to their

fake relatives already in the US as paper sons and daughters. In

response, the city of San Francisco created a prison-like detention

center for incoming immigrants at Angel Island in 1910, where

officials screened and deported fake incomers.

In Conclusion, the Chinese Exclusion Act made a great

impact on the American people as well as on the Chinese. Many

reasons were could have been the reason the US applied this act to the

Chinese. Many Americans feared losing their jobs, therefore they took

action. They also feared the spread of Communism from China.

American reputation remains tainted by its racism and inhumane

policies towards the Chinese in the latter part of the 19th century and

the early part of the 20th century

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