Reproduction, Eugenics and Immigration Law


I’ve posted a new working paper on SSRN — Reproduction, Eugenics and Immigration Law.


Policies designed to exclude the children of unwanted immigrants from citizenship have insidious roots in the eugenics movement. Today’s anti-immigrant agenda is no different than the one that animated the eugenicists into enacting the restrictive 1924 legislation. Nor is there a difference in the latent racism inherent in such views. While immigration restrictionists may not subscribe to eugenics theory, they fear immigrants and their descendants on the same basis as eugenicists in the past, namely that the children of immigrants deemed undesirable are inherently less American, unassimilable and could lead to the demise of the white majority.

The goals of the eugenics movement of yesteryears are carried out by behaviors that are much more retrograde than sterilization. These behaviors include maintaining restrictive immigration laws, keeping national origin quotas, targeting undocumented immigrants through law enforcement efforts, and viewing immigrants as a public health problem that needs to be purged

It was recently listed on SSRN’s Top Ten download list for: PRN: Discrimination, Oppression, Coercion, Consent to Risk or Harm, Violence (Topic) and Reproductive Justice, Law & Policy eJournal, as well as the PSN: Politics of Immigration (Topic).

However, it needs quite a bit of work, especially with regards to citations. I also want to incorporate the new study by the Center for New Community,  “The Quinacrine Report: Sterilization, Modern-Day Eugenics, and the Anti-Immigrant Movement,” which details the connections between the Tanton network and Quinacrine, a drug used in coercive sterilization.

Comments and suggestions welcome.

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