As the White House and Congress grapple over immigration legislation, the term "chain migration" has quickly become part of the D.C. lexicon.
President Trump has blasted the practice as a massive immigration loophole that terrorists and "truly evil" people can exploit to infiltrate the U.S. Democrats have defended it as a cornerstone of America's immigration history.
So what exactly is it?
Put simply, "chain migration" is a derogatory term used to describe the ability of U.S. citizens and green card holders to bring their extended family into the country.
A majority of the roughly one million foreigners who are allowed to enter the U.S. to become permanent residents each year are approved because they're related to Americans.
Chain migration is a term used by demographers since the 1960s to refer to the social process by which migrants from a particular town follow others from that town to a particular destination city or neighborhood. The destination may be in another country or in a new, usually urban, location within the same country.
Chain migration can be defined as a “movement in which prospective migrants learn of opportunities, are provided with transportation, and have initial accommodation and employment arranged by means of primary social relationships with previous migrants.” Or, more simply put: "The dynamic underlying 'chain migration' is so simple that it sounds like common sense: People are more likely to move to where people they know live, and each new immigrant makes people they know more likely to move there in turn."
The term "chain migration" has been around for a long time
The 1960s is not a "long time" when it comes to word histories.
The term "chain migration" is used by people who feel that word "family" make immigrants seem too much like human beings.
In truth, most of us are here because some great-grandparent came here from Europe.
That's not the same thing. People born here, descendants of someone who immigrated several generations ago, are not considered to be immigrants themselves.
I want to emphasize that the term has only recently acquired this particular negative connotation.
Quote:Chain migration is a term used by demographers since the 1960s to refer to the social process by which migrants from a particular town follow others from that town to a particular destination city or neighborhood. The destination may be in another country or in a new, usually urban, location within the same country.
About half the village left in the mid-1950's.