Laws These changes provided immigrants families’ protection and

Laws
that Impacted Asian Americans

The United States is currently home to
more than 17 million people of Asian and Asian American descent, such as
Chinese American, Filipino American, Vietnamese American, Japanese American,
Korean American, and Indian American. During the year of 1852, about 20,000
individuals from Asia were residents in the United States, as cooks, laborers,
and housekeepers. About 30 years after Asians began to migrate to the United
States, Congress passed the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882. This act was the
first major law that was placed to restrict migrates from entering the United
States (Hunt 235). Laws like this was the beginning for the United States
attempt of keeping Asian migrates out the U.S due to their race.

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White Americans were afraid of the
continuously growing population of Asian Americans in the United States, so the
Immigration Act of 1924 was created. This was another law that impacted Asians
entry into the United States of America. The initial targets of this law were
immigrants from Eastern Europe. Due to the United States governments concerns
that immigrants from other countries would attempt to undermine this policy;
the law was expanded to include other continents including Asia. The
restriction of Japanese immigrants warranted an immediate response from
Japanese leaders. Suggesting that the United States government’s antagonism
towards Asians was racially provoked directly because of World War I (Lee 517).

With the 1965 amendments to the
Immigration Act, a window was opened for more emigrates to enter the United
States. The changes made to the act were meant to reconnect families and allow
people into the United States on work visas. Immigrants were given a voice
through those who benefit from their presence. ‘Immigration stakeholders’ such
as politicians, policy influencers, and wealthy officials spoke for immigrants
against policies that blocked entry into the United States because of their
ethnicity. These changes provided immigrants families’ protection and rights to
call the United States home (Lee). These changes created a vision of what the
model immigrant family should look like, through the stereotype of Asian
Americans being an economic success both occupational and educational, without
government assistance. Now in the 21st Century, immigration policies
are a constant conversation. With President Trump attempting to build a wall to
keep Mexicans out and his feud with North Korea Leader Kim Jong Un. As well as
President Trump’s attempt to ban all Muslims from the United States,
immigration policies such as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) is
need to protect those immigrant families.

 

Media
Portrayal of Asian Americans

The media portrayal of different
ethnicities can be exact to the characteristics of the people and their culture
or stereotypic views of the groups. The media can portray a particular group as
inferior, stupid, savage, docile, or refugees. The media has distorted the
images of Asian Americans for many years. In the early 20th century,
films such as Broken Blossoms and the Cheat featured Asian actor Sesue
Hayakawa, who helped portray stereotypes of Asian males as menacing, predatory,
and lusting after white women. Whereas in films such as the Thief of Baghdad, Asian women were
characterized as diabolical, mean, sexually alluring, sneaky, sophisticated, and
determined to corrupt and seduce white men. As time went on the images of Asian
began to worsen, films such as the Dragon
Seed, showed Japanese men as rapist, killer, or an arsonist. After the end
of World War II, the image of the Japanese and Chinese people in films and
television began to change. There was more of what was thought to be positive
images. The Japanese women were now painted as submissive, meek, prostitutes,
and ready to serve the needs of the white American man. This stereotype was
displayed in opera titled “Madam Butterfly. (Shah)”

Today, Asian Americans are prominent in
various areas of media. The media is no longer accustomed to using some of the
horrible stereotypes associated with Asian Americans. With Taiwanese American film
directors like Justin Lin, directing films such as Star Trek Beyond and four of The
Fast and The Furious movies and Indian American actress Mindy Kaling of the
Mindy Project, the media has changed
its view of how a person of Asian descent should behave. People of Asian and
Asian American descent are in positions to provide the world with their own
perception of themselves. Not only is there representation for Asian Americans
in movies and television, also on YouTube. YouTube is an amazing video platform
that is utilized to showcase the various talents of the world including Asian
Americans. 

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