POS334-L: THE RACE AND ETHNICITY BOOK REVIEW DISCUSSION LIST
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Georgie Anne Geyer, Americans No More (Atlantic Monthly Press 1996) ISBN: 0871136503

From Subject
Danielle Lee Walker <dlwalke@ilstu.edu> Americans No More
Nonito P Ong <npong@ilstu.edu> Americans No More(Will Ong)
Eddie Okelley <eokell@ilstu.edu> Re: Americans No More
tangela williams <trwilli@ilstu.edu> "Americans No More" reviewed by Tangela Williams
Nonito P Ong <npong@ilstu.edu> Fwd: Americans No More(Will Ong)

Date: Wed, 24 Feb 1999 22:24:12 -0600
From: Danielle Lee Walker <dlwalke@ilstu.edu>
Subject: Americans No More


"Americans No More" by Georgie Anne Geyer
Reviewed by (Danielle Walker)
Americans No More by Georgie Anne Geyer is an evaluation of
immigration and citizenship policies in America. Geyer discusses the
history of immigration and the possible future consequences of it in her
novel. She encourages people to think carefully of the consequences of
immigration. Geyer also encourages people to think about the meaning of
citizenship. Her book serves as a way to get people to think about the
consequences of having foreign people enter America. Her book is told from
a "journalist's perspective" as she phrases it. This novel was written as a
result of her own experieces.
Geyer makes it clear where her background comes from. She was raised
in Chicago, has traveled to many foreign countries and has met and
interviewed some of the most famous people in the world, among them are
presidents and world leaders. She travels around giving speeches on
citizenship and immigration and people tend to ask her questions, which is
why she wrote this book to educate people. Since she spent time with so
many people who were non-citizens and people from other countries she came
to realize that a lot of people want to be U.S. citizens. She has studied
immigration historically and has interviewed top officials who deal with
immigration. The rise of immigrants coming to America to find jobs has
risen she has found through her studies of the government.
Geyer in this book compares the U.S. to other countries. A main
country she compares the U.S. to is Yugoslavia. Yugoslavians she believes
have a lot of bitterness with anger resulting from past historical
problems. As a result the country has suffered a loss of principles and
Geyer is fearful of the influence of the country on America. She thinks
that people in Yugoslavia do not understand the value of citizenship as a
result of this bitterness. If America follows their example she believes
that the United States' societal structure will suffer a breakdown like
theirs. Geyer herself has studied the country. She has observed the
background and analyzed the problems the country has been in. She saw a
country whose system collapsed very badly which is why she compares this
country to America so much. She views this country as an ultimate example
of what can happen.
Geyer defines citizenship as "a cornerstone of all other
commitments...", a "dignified commitment of respect..." She truly
emphasizes that without citizenship people cannot function effectively. She
believes that currently people nowadays must come together and form a
special kind of commitment. Commitment has a very deep meaning and I think
she is right. People do not always understand the true meaning of what it
means to make a commitment. Commitments are meant to last and in the case
of being a U.S. citizen they should last she argues.
Geyer uses historical events to support ther viewpoints. She discussed
the 1991 Takoma Park's vote which gave immigrants the right to vote in the
local city elections. Geyer was displeased with this occurence. She felt
that this was an influence on immigrants. People have voted illegally in
this country for years and she was concerned that more people would
continue on doing so if this happened. I understand her concern about being
wary of people she is not accustomed to being around. I do not completly
understand the extent to why she has some of her viewpoints. She has
traveled and seen a lot of destuction and I believe that she views people
from other countries as being a threat to America. That is why she compares
them. In my opinion she has a tendency to label people as being a certain
way. She judges based on historical events that have affected their race as
a whole. I think she should focus more on the individual. This is probaly
hard for Geyer to do because she has traveled and seen people suffering, so
she seems to assume certain things about groups.
Geyer has concerns over certain types of Americans. Black people have
had to overcome a lot of oppression and exhibit bitterness which is shown
through organizations supporting blacks. Geyer feels that blacks become so
absorbed in their feelings of resentment that they lose the true
understanding of what it means to be a citizen. It is not only blacks she
claims this has happened to. Hispanics for example are another group she
believes are confused over the true meaning of what it means to be a
citizen. She stated that many Hispanic communties are trying to help the
advancement of Hispanics but are not helping in actuality because they are
confused with their identities. Geyer supports author Shelby Steele who
claims that ethnic groups have lost their identities, especially blacks
because of anger that is being manifested in unhealthy ways. Both Geyer and
Steele believe this is further causing the groups to be oppressed.
Geyer is very particular over the type of immigrants that she wants
in America. The people who are elite in some way she thinks should be
allowed in. She wants America to be more careful with their choices of who
they let in. Geyer admired the previous politics of America on immigration.
She thinks America should be more strict. The 1920 immigration law that
severly restricted immigration after the first
World War was something she thinks was benficial. People who are allowed in
should follow America's standards in some way is what I think she is trying
to say. Geyer appears to have a big issue with people who have a hard time
speaking proper American English. She compared the English of foreigners of
Lebanon and Serbia to the language of gang bangers in Los Angelos. I do not
have that much of an issue with people who have a hard time speaking proper
English. The language is hard to learn and it differs from many other
languages because there are so many exceptions to the rules in English.
Geyer analyzes the community activities of minorities. She finds them
very interesting, She is curious as to how much poweer they exert. She
spent a lot of time discussing MALDEF ("Mexican-American Legal Defense and
Educational Fund") a minority organization that tries to help Mexican
Americans acheive a certain amount of power. Actually, I think she admires
the fact that they have power but at the same time she is intimidated of a
minority organization having that much power. She criticized the
organization for their allowing illegal immigrants to get jobs in their
offices. She stated that their helping immigrants was "typical" of them.
Geyer may sound very negative at times, but she remains hopeful that
America will have a "Renaissance" that restores America's values. She views
the immigratioin system as being frivolous. She claims that the laws are at
a "sixth-grade level." I am not an expert on immigration but I think that
Geyer due to her travels and experiences focuses too much over the types of
countries that want to come to America. I think she should focus more on

the individuals themselves.
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Date: Thu, 4 Mar 1999 16:02:37 -0600
From: Nonito P Ong <npong@ilstu.edu>
Subject: Americans No More(Will Ong)


There are many problems that face the United States today. One of the
biggest and controversial issues is our countries policy concerning illegal
and legal immigration. Who do we let in and don’t let in? Getting to our
country as a non- American citizen is a battle in itself. Getting into
America is a process someone in another country has to go through with the
green cards, applications, and visas. Once they finally are able to become
citizens, they still have a difficult road ahead. What problems await them?
Does America have the resources to provide for its people? What are the
consequences of having immigrants in our country? Georgie Anne Geyer’s
“Americans No More” deals with these issues.
Chapter 1 should have been more clearer or it could have at least made a
more clear connection between the information presented and immigration.
Not just in one or two chapters, but the whole book had too many statistics
and not enough analysis. The first chapter, Balkanazation is a chapter that
focuses on world history and how it could impact the United States. It
talks about how nations like Yugoslavia, Former Communist Countries, India,
and Iraq are in turmoil because you have different ethnic groups fighting
each other. Punjabs in India and Serbs in the Former Yugoslavia are
examples of groups fighting each other based on ethnicity or religion. The
industrialized Western Countries like the United States and Western Europe
have order and peace because of democracy. These industrialized nations
are nations of ideas, not people. From this information, Georgie Geyer
shows that these nations are crumbling because of ethnic clashes. The
author thinks that someday the U.S. could end up like these countries. A
basic concept the author is trying to get across is Globalization.
Globalization is an idea of the world being one economically. There was a
Korean businessman wanting a new type of Korean that embraces
globalization. This new type of Korean would be different in that he or
she wouldn’t be so pro-Korean when doing business. He or she would welcome
doing business with people all over the world. He felt that his market is
dependent on other markets just as much as they are on his. I feel that
this is true. You can’t have an egotistical view of yourself thinking that
the world needs you more than you need it. Same applies for people.
Thinking in terms of just keeping to yourself denies any chance of
progress. With this, Geyer says that there are two effects of this
Globalization. The American Corporations losing their American image and
people not considering themselves so American, but more of a part of global
community. I feel that globalization is a good thing because it will help
our country’s and other countries economy expand. However, according to
Geyer the downside to globalization is that governments lose their control
and power over their own people if globalization increased. American
corporations and people would also lose their traditional connection with
America they grown accustomed to. The last consequence of globalization is
you will have a decrease in American Patriotism. In other words, America
would lose some of its identity. I think that too much globalization is bad
because I don’t want countries to lose their individualities, which makes
them special.
The second and third chapters dealt with the controversial issue of
citizenship and voting. In 1991, the city of Tahoma Park, which is a
suburb of Washington D.C, decided it would give non-citizens the right to
vote in city elections, government, and school and city boards. However,
having illegal citizens vote was being widely practiced long before Tahoma
Park. In fact, it is being practiced in a lot of other places like Chicago
and New York. People who allow non-u.s. citizens to vote would argue
that to understand this problem of who can and can’t vote, would first have
to understand the meaning of citizen. Geyer’s definition of being a
citizen is that you have to inhabit the city you live in. She is also
saying that you can be a citizen of a certain town that, but not be a
citizen of the United States. She feels this is democratic for non-citizens
to be able to vote and that this should be a joy, but I disagree. Again, I
feel we can’t have just anybody vote. Then there’s the issue of taxation.
Some argue that our country was founded on the no representation, then no
taxation point of view. I feel that we need to reevaluate that point of
view and remember that what policies our country was founded on, would not
apply as much they same way today. When reading this chapter, I like many
others , were outraged. On page 57 of the book, Thomas J. Mooney put it
best when he said voting is an act of involvement, right of passaging
defining our government. In other words, I believe being able to vote is a
privilege that should be given only to U.S. citizens, nobody else. That’s
is one of the benefits of being an American Citizen. By having
non-citizens given the opportunity to vote is a just another way
unconfirming our governments’ existence and power. If you go to another
country, you won’t be allowed to vote. So why should people from other
countries be allowed to vote here?
The best chapter in the book is on the state of California. If things
continue the way they are going, the rest of the United States will be like
California. California is the already the most diverse state. It also has
the most minorities and immigrants in its state. Geyer discusses why
California has such serious a gang problem with its youth and immigrants.
There are too many immigrants and not enough jobs, as Geyer summed up.
With no job and nothing to do, these immigrants result to crime and gangs.
What else do they have to do during the day? How else can they make money?
That’s where the drugs become a factor. There aren’t enough resources to
go around. Although, there are youth gang problems everywhere, not just in
areas with a highly concentrated number of immigrants. I believe that
there needs to be a limit on the number of immigrants that are allowed in
the country. We need to take any measure necessary to bring the number of
illegal immigrants down. For example on page 302, the book talks about how
the town of El Paso, Texas employed extra police to patrol its borders.
The number of illegal immigrants caught crossing the border increased and
the crime rate fell.
With having so many illegal immigrants, it is a strain on our country.
According to the figures in the book, having illegal immigrants costs Los
Angeles County alone $1.43 billion. Illegal immigrants only make in $36.2
million, which results in a huge net loss for their economy. Then there’s
the issue with healthcare and American taxpayer. Again with so many
illegal foreign-born people in this country, it drives up medical costs
everywhere, especially California. Who has to suffer for this? The
American taxpayer has to suffer. Geyer feels that why should the American
people have to pay medical and other expenses for people who don’t even
live here legally. Now, I understand why there’s never enough money to
around to help our own people.
Just trying to keep people from illegally entering this country is also a
financial burden born by the American people. El Paso, Texas example, it
costs money to have all those patrol the long border. Going back to the
situation with drugs and immigrants, this causes crime rates to go up.
Prisons are already overcrowded. When immigrants come here legally or
illegally, not only do they bring their culture, but they also bring drugs.
This contributes to America’s already alarming rate of drug-related deaths
and crime.
Geyer’s main point here is that having immigrants here in the United States
has consequences. The crime rates go up, costs go up, and the tax rates
increase. Like a lot of Americans, she feels something needs to be done
about this. The government should do more to stop the influx of illegal
immigrants and come up with stricter laws and policies.
Geyer throughout the book talks about how immigrants do whatever they can
to keep their identity and be being successful living in America. I
believe that if the immigrants in America want to be successful, they need
to accept American culture. That doesn’t mean that they have to forget
their identity. Immigrants are always made fun of. Not by people like
myself, but by those everyday jerks. People have mistaken me for an
immigrant, I’ve lived here in America my whole life, and was made fun of.
It was very unpleasant experience. To be on the safe side, immigrants have
to accept the mainstream culture or otherwise they will be ridiculed. What
I’m suggesting is that if you’re one to cling to you ways that’s fine. I
have no problem with immigrants keeping their identity, etc. However,
they must realize they are responsible for whatever negative reaction
people give them. If Immigrants or anybody don’t care what people think
about them, that’s great. Geyer mentions how having so many immigrants in
this country results in little ethnic enclaves such as Little Tokyo,
Chinatown, and Little Italy. As a result, you have isolation and
segregation of groups. The perfect example is Los Angeles. The author
feels that it is the fault of the U.S. government for not being strict
enough on cracking down on illegal immigration. There was a time when the
government was very active in this, but now that our society is becoming
more multicultural, people will see it as a bad thing if the government
rejects legal and illegal immigrants. I feel that immigration is fine as

long as it’s legal.
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Date: Mon, 29 Mar 1999 00:27:12 -0600
From: Eddie Okelley <eokell@ilstu.edu>
Subject: Re: Americans No More


I read your review of "Americans No More" by Anne Geyer and found what Anne
Geyer had to say very, very interesting. What caught my eye was how she
compares America with Yugoslavia, in that there is alot of bitterness with
anger from past historical problems. This was unique in that "we" or should
I rather say "NATO" is at war with Yugoslavia. I found this to be of a
great concern if what this lady believes is true. I tend to disagree with
her in that only the "select" few should be allowed in to our country. True
we need standards or rather there needs to proper channels to go through in
order to become citizens, just like in the past. However, like the past
America was founded by those that came from all different economic
backgrounds and lacked the common bond of knowing english as a language.
God Bless America!

At 12:24 AM 2/25/99 -0600, you wrote:
> "Americans No More" by Georgie Anne Geyer
>
> Reviewed by (Danielle Walker)
>
> Americans No More by Georgie Anne Geyer is an evaluation of
>immigration and c...................................................

>
Back to top...



Date: Wed, 7 Apr 1999 18:01:10 -0500
From: tangela williams <trwilli@ilstu.edu>
Subject: "Americans No More" reviewed by Tangela Williams


Tangela Williams Review: "Americans No More" Georgia Anne Geyer "

>From the very beginning of the republic Americans knew in their heart and
minds that America was something different, and pleasant, and they come to
realize that their country was the very example to the world of the
modernized nation-state; as such, it was marked by God and history for all
other struggling, less lucky old countries to follow." (Pg.5)

Would the above statement signify what every American citizen believes?
And if so, would “God” continue to bless Americans who allow people from
those struggling countries to suffer and die, when they are capable of
assisting to make life better for those people?

A native of Chicago IL, but a woman of many places, Georgia Anne Geyer has
traveled throughout the United States to various countries giving speeches
and touching on the surface of citizenship. As a journalist, Geyer has
interviewed a massive number of presidents, world leaders and criminals.
She was the first journalist to interview Suddam Hussein; the second most
wanted Nazi; Walter Rauff, President Ronald Reagan, President George Bush
and also King Hussein of Jordan. And these are only a few of the many Geyer
has had the opportunity to meet and interview. Geyer's experiences in
Yugoslavia, Lebanon, India and several other countries inspired her to
write the powerful novel "Americans No More."

"Americans No More," reads like a history book. Geyer tries to encourage
Americans to remember the root of citizenship by discussing the history of
Western civilization and early American history. She says Americans are
starting to take citizenship for granted and that this is demostrated, in
part by the rapidly increasing levels of immigration. She believe Americans
destroy the main factors, language, culture, borders, and civic
responsibility when they extend the rights to all whom wishes to become
American citizens or who wish to just live here. When immigrants bring
different languages, beliefs and different identities to America it starts
to confuse the definition we have labeled as the real “American.” Geyer
expressed how many immigrants that come to America does not want to
assimilate to America’s costume which destroy America uniqueness. She also
talks about problems that can evolve from globalization, which can bring
America's status down, but I thought her main focus was geared toward
immigrants receiving American citizenship and benefits.

Geyer argues that if Americans continue to let immigrants into the country,
America in return will know longer be the dominant country. Throughout her
book she compares America to less fortunate countries (third world) and
implies the more immigrants that come to the United States to make money,
will increase the likeliness that America’s economy will soon suffer. Yet
she express how there could be exceptions made to those who are elite in
some manner. However is Geyer suggesting that Americans should relate back
to the 1920 immigration law that carried more restriction on immigration?
She believes those people who want to have American citizenship should live
as Americans. She goes on to say, "Strangers because history of society
(and there's the meaning) they are joining and without having to make most
of the traditional commitments to it, so they remain what they were when
they approached America (strangers) (pg.52)"

Geyer also emphasizes that immigrants should be able to speak proper
English. She writes, some immigrant come to America because of its
opportunities but along with that they are still in their small
sub-cultures. Most immigrants keep to themselves and identify with their
heritage or ethnic group. An example could be China town or something along
that path. I get the feeling Geyer does not consider such affiliations are
demonstrating appreciation for American citizenship. Geyer then states how
the test to become an American citizen is comparable to a joke or fraud.
She uses question #86 as an example, "Name one benefit of being a citizen
of the United States? One might pause here to reflect upon the profundity
of the historical "social compact" or contrasting between the citizen and
the state, how it grew and was nurtured originally through all the long and
turbulent stages of modern Europe civilization, at each step and every step
making the individual human being more because the love that individual had
made a solemn commitment to a nation." (Pg.3) But instead there are only
three acceptable answers; which are, "To obtain federal government jobs, to
travel with a U.S passport and to petition for close relatives to come to
the United States to live." (pg.4) Geyer insinuates Americans has simply
made it too easy for immigrants to gain American benefits and citizenship.
Question #86, also upsets Geyer because the answer has nothing to do with
any knowledge of America's history. She then writes about how immigrants
gain voting rights and the number of immigrants who vote illegally each
year. She expresses disgust about the 1993 National Voter Registration Act,
which prohibits states from requiring applicants to present proof of the
basic eligibility requirement for voting, which is citizenship.

When you have become part of a country/society, the events that take place
within your surrounding should concern you, considering it can affect you
tremendously, especially in relation too electing people in office.
Therefore I feel immigrants deserve the right to vote, if Americans have
allowed immigrants to migrate to America, work for less than minimum wage
(which is a plus for Americans), be forced to forget their identities, pay
taxes and deal with arrogant attitudes, why shouldn't they be able to vote?
Is it wrong for immigrates to want to vote to make changes? If the laws
they are trying to pass do not cause detriment to American people, why
would there be a problem? Personally I can understand immigrants wanting to
get laws that protect them from any discrimination and prejudices etc.,
considering America is known for treating people differently if one looks
different, or have different backgrounds and beliefs. I sense Americans
(like Geyer) has no real problem with immigration as long as it is
beneficial to them. I can not emphasize enough, how we are all "God's"
children and if we would stop trying to divide one another and grasp the
concept that this life is only monetary and see each other as children of
"God" we would eliminate a tremendous amount of our chaos and disagreements.

Geyer's concern with America's wellbeing is understandable. After all we
live in a society that does not see everyone as children of "God" and
there's even those who chose not to believe, consequently we have undesired
dilemmas. Unwanted perplexities that are ignored within America that needs
to be addressed. Nevertheless we choose not to do so, instead we say the
large flow of immigrants to the United States is accountable for America's
value and economy declining. (If we chose to believe America is declining
and losing value) Except I have to disagree and stress our last fret should
be people from other countries bringing our economy down or anything else.
The American people are their own greatest enemy and they will destroy it's
own existence before individuals from poverty redden countries have the
opportunity.

America is not a perfect place, yes it generates a large flow of money and
profound power but it has a tremendous amount of downfalls. There are many
opportunities in America, but at what measure do you have to go too to get
them? Statistics will show that there are a lot of Americans who chose not
to work, which leaves an enormous amount of jobs not being filled. With
that thought in mind, why should we stop those immigrants who are out of
work from coming to America to fill unwanted position by America's people?
But then there's our stereo-typical ways of thinking (Most Americans are
guilty of judging because of stereotypes), that Mexicans etc. are only
coming to American to bring drugs, and whatever else isolated minds have
been rationalizing, but lets be realistic! If I am told America, the home
of the free, land of the brave and many riches why wouldn't I try to better
my situation and move to America? Yet when many come to America they are
stunned by the undesirable issue Americans deal with on a daily basis
(racism, discrimination, injustices, etc.) that they wish to return to
their homeland.

However Geyer suggest immigrants who want to come to the United States
should become more Americanized. After all most people wanting to come to
America are not interested in coming because they want to be Americans, but
because the opportunity they thought living in America can possess. That is
presumably why many choose not to give up the cultures and languages, etc.
Simply because they do not speak English, does not mean they are not aware
that America is a money-hungry country. And most of the immigrants who come
to America focus towards more productive circumstance, progression some
Americans are not even thinking about. For example Japanese, Chinese,
Indians, etc., focus on education, so when they come to America they are
extremely more advanced in the educational system than Americans are. I
wonder did Geyer ever think that permitting immigration could be beneficial
to America on a social level? It would probably convert living in American
more comfortable for some, if there was a mixture of all cultures and
"races”. That would eliminate having a majority of one particular race.

Georgia Anne Geyer is a very brisk writer; she has some very commendable
views. Geyer wants Americans to realize that there is a possibility that
America could become equivalent to other disadvantaged countries if they
continue to tolerate unrestricted immigration. I have to disagree because
regardless how many immigrants come to America, American's will not allow
them to make more money or advance in the mainstream to the point where
Americans are at any risk of losing the power they preside over. If
Americans even had a notion that there at risk for being equivalent to
disadvantaged countries there would not be so many overpaid athletics and
underpaid teachers. Besides the only way a country could possible become
equivalent to America would be to take away all America's power,
manufactory goods and cut off their trade with other countries. America
should concentrate on the significance of education rather than the
possibility that permitting immigrates into the U.S. will cause a problem
in the future. If we have the skills and knowledge to construct our own
supplies for survival why should we be intimidated by allowing immigrants
to try to get a piece of the America's riches. We are on an economic system
that deals with preference and favors, "you are in my circle; so I'll
scratch your back and you scratch mine and no one else can be part of that
sub-culture unless they make as much as money as we do." Therefore
Americans will always have that benefit over immigrants.

Geyer views seem to stem from the fact she has been around the world to see
and experience many things. She refers to conservative William Bennett and
Charles Krauthhammer and others to reinforce her views. As noted above,
Geyer never really confirmed she was totally against immigration, but it
must be restricted. Yet how can we say, lets pick and chose who’s able to
come to America and if you are financially stable then you have a greater
chance. Considering there is an extensive amount of people living in
poverty and homeless in America, Americans will pay athletes millions of
dollars a season, and the homeless are still not sheltered and the people
in poverty are still in poverty. American's are not doing anything to solve
the problems that exist in society. I personally feel we are all equal
whether we are from America or another country, so why limit someone from
making a better life for themselves if they are able too? It might create a
little more competition amongst those who are living in poverty, but if you
are willing to work, and put your trust in God all else will prevail. I do
not think America should imply poor immigrants could not come to America
because that will make a larger amount of poor people for Americans to deal
with, but I do not think America is dealing with that issue as much as they
should. Furthermore if immigrates are willing to work I do not think they
will remain poor for long. And as I stated earlier if someone is eager to
work, let him or her.

Geyer sway from history to the present times of today trying to persuade
one to understand the importance of America history and why Americans
should not weaken it existence by undesired immigration. Geyer suggest you
have to know the history of America, the idea the "founding fathers" had
intended before you can honestly say you are a true American citizen. But
along the lines of American history, she left out some very significant
factors; she never really addressed the role people of color contributed to
making America what it is today. However she states blacks really do not
understand the meaning of citizenship, because of past historical events,
so are blacks really not citizens? On that account, what would America have
become without the people of color? How can anyone truly understand
America's history when it tends to be someone else’s stories (his-story)?

Society has conditioned us to believe it is not our problem but the
individuals, consequently how many people do you know choose to be homeless
or to have to go without food, shelter, clean clothes, etc? On that account
are we suppose to be proud to be American citizens? And for that reason, I
ask proud of what? Hence, a country that lies, steals, and cheats to get
ahead, besides whose actually benefiting from America's riches?
Back to top...


Date: Fri, 09 Apr 1999 16:15:06 -0500
To: gmklass@ilstu.edu
From: Nonito P Ong <npong@ilstu.edu>


>Date: Thu, 4 Mar 1999 16:02:37 -0600
>Reply-To: The Race and Ethnicity Book Review Discussion List
> <POS334-L@H-NET.MSU.EDU>
>Sender: The Race and Ethnicity Book Review Discussion List
> <POS334-L@H-NET.MSU.EDU>
>From: Nonito P Ong <npong@ilstu.edu>
>Subject: Americans No More(Will Ong)
>To: POS334-L@H-NET.MSU.EDU
>
>1
>
>There are many problems that face the United States today. One of the
>biggest and controversial issues is our countries policy concerning illegal
>and legal immigration. Who do we let in and don’t let in? Getting to our
>country as a non- American citizen is a battle in itself. Getting into
>America is a process someone in another country has to go through with the
>green cards, applications, and visas. Once they finally are able to become
>citizens, they still have a difficult road ahead. What problems await them?
> Does America have the resources to provide for its people? What are the
>consequences of having immigrants in our country? Georgie Anne Geyer’s
>“Americans No More” deals with these issues.
>
>Chapter 1 should have been more clearer or it could have at least made a
>more clear connection between the information presented and immigration.
>Not just in one or two chapters, but the whole book had too many statistics
>and not enough analysis. The first chapter, Balkanazation is a chapter that
>focuses on world history and how it could impact the United States. It
>talks about how nations like Yugoslavia, Former Communist Countries, India,
>and Iraq are in turmoil because you have different ethnic groups fighting
>each other. Punjabs in India and Serbs in the Former Yugoslavia are
>examples of groups fighting each other based on ethnicity or religion. The
>industrialized Western Countries like the United States and Western Europe
>have order and peace because of democracy. These industrialized nations
>are nations of ideas, not people. From this information, Georgie Geyer
>shows that these nations are crumbling because of ethnic clashes. The
>author thinks that someday the U.S. could end up like these countries. A
>basic concept the author is trying to get across is Globalization.
>Globalization is an idea of the world being one economically. There was a
>Korean businessman wanting a new type of Korean that embraces
>globalization. This new type of Korean would be different in that he or
>she wouldn’t be so pro-Korean when doing business. He or she would welcome
>doing business with people all over the world. He felt that his market is
>dependent on other markets just as much as they are on his. I feel that
>this is true. You can’t have an egotistical view of yourself thinking that
>the world needs you more than you need it. Same applies for people.
>Thinking in terms of just keeping to yourself denies any chance of
>progress. With this, Geyer says that there are two effects of this
>Globalization. The American Corporations losing their American image and
>people not considering themselves so American, but more of a part of global
>community. I feel that globalization is a good thing because it will help
>our country’s and other countries economy expand. However, according to
>Geyer the downside to globalization is that governments lose their control
>and power over their own people if globalization increased. American
>corporations and people would also lose their traditional connection with
>America they grown accustomed to. The last consequence of globalization is
>you will have a decrease in American Patriotism. In other words, America
>would lose some of its identity. I think that too much globalization is bad
>because I don’t want countries to lose their individualities, which makes
>them special.
>
>The second and third chapters dealt with the controversial issue of
>citizenship and voting. In 1991, the city of Tahoma Park, which is a
>suburb of Washington D.C, decided it would give non-citizens the right to
>vote in city elections, government, and school and city boards. However,
>having illegal citizens vote was being widely practiced long before Tahoma
>Park. In fact, it is being practiced in a lot of other places like Chicago
>and New York. People who allow non-u.s. citizens to vote would argue
>that to understand this problem of who can and can’t vote, would first have
>to understand the meaning of citizen. Geyer’s definition of being a
>citizen is that you have to inhabit the city you live in. She is also
>saying that you can be a citizen of a certain town that, but not be a
>citizen of the United States. She feels this is democratic for non-citizens
>to be able to vote and that this should be a joy, but I disagree. Again, I
>feel we can’t have just anybody vote. Then there’s the issue of taxation.
>Some argue that our country was founded on the no representation, then no
>taxation point of view. I feel that we need to reevaluate that point of
>view and remember that what policies our country was founded on, would not
>apply as much they same way today. When reading this chapter, I like many
>others , were outraged. On page 57 of the book, Thomas J. Mooney put it
>best when he said voting is an act of involvement, right of passaging
>defining our government. In other words, I believe being able to vote is a
>privilege that should be given only to U.S. citizens, nobody else. That’s
>is one of the benefits of being an American Citizen. By having
>non-citizens given the opportunity to vote is a just another way
>unconfirming our governments’ existence and power. If you go to another
>country, you won’t be allowed to vote. So why should people from other
>countries be allowed to vote here?
>
>The best chapter in the book is on the state of California. If things
>continue the way they are going, the rest of the United States will be like
>California. California is the already the most diverse state. It also has
>the most minorities and immigrants in its state. Geyer discusses why
>California has such serious a gang problem with its youth and immigrants.
>There are too many immigrants and not enough jobs, as Geyer summed up.
>With no job and nothing to do, these immigrants result to crime and gangs.
>What else do they have to do during the day? How else can they make money?
> That’s where the drugs become a factor. There aren’t enough resources to
>go around. Although, there are youth gang problems everywhere, not just in
>areas with a highly concentrated number of immigrants. I believe that
>there needs to be a limit on the number of immigrants that are allowed in
>the country. We need to take any measure necessary to bring the number of
>illegal immigrants down. For example on page 302, the book talks about how
>the town of El Paso, Texas employed extra police to patrol its borders.
>The number of illegal immigrants caught crossing the border increased and
>the crime rate fell.
>
>With having so many illegal immigrants, it is a strain on our country.
>According to the figures in the book, having illegal immigrants costs Los
>Angeles County alone $1.43 billion. Illegal immigrants only make in $36.2
>million, which results in a huge net loss for their economy. Then there’s
>the issue with healthcare and American taxpayer. Again with so many
>illegal foreign-born people in this country, it drives up medical costs
>everywhere, especially California. Who has to suffer for this? The
>American taxpayer has to suffer. Geyer feels that why should the American
>people have to pay medical and other expenses for people who don’t even
>live here legally. Now, I understand why there’s never enough money to
>around to help our own people.
>
>Just trying to keep people from illegally entering this country is also a
>financial burden born by the American people. El Paso, Texas example, it
>costs money to have all those patrol the long border. Going back to the
>situation with drugs and immigrants, this causes crime rates to go up.
>Prisons are already overcrowded. When immigrants come here legally or
>illegally, not only do they bring their culture, but they also bring drugs.
> This contributes to America’s already alarming rate of drug-related deaths
>and crime.
>
>Geyer’s main point here is that having immigrants here in the United States
>has consequences. The crime rates go up, costs go up, and the tax rates
>increase. Like a lot of Americans, she feels something needs to be done
>about this. The government should do more to stop the influx of illegal
>immigrants and come up with stricter laws and policies.
>
>Geyer throughout the book talks about how immigrants do whatever they can
>to keep their identity and be being successful living in America. I
>believe that if the immigrants in America want to be successful, they need
>to accept American culture. That doesn’t mean that they have to forget
>their identity. Immigrants are always made fun of. Not by people like
>myself, but by those everyday jerks. People have mistaken me for an
>immigrant, I’ve lived here in America my whole life, and was made fun of.
>It was very unpleasant experience. To be on the safe side, immigrants have
>to accept the mainstream culture or otherwise they will be ridiculed. What
>I’m suggesting is that if you’re one to cling to you ways that’s fine. I
>have no problem with immigrants keeping their identity, etc. However,
>they must realize they are responsible for whatever negative reaction
>people give them. If Immigrants or anybody don’t care what people think
>about them, that’s great. Geyer mentions how having so many immigrants in
>this country results in little ethnic enclaves such as Little Tokyo,
>Chinatown, and Little Italy. As a result, you have isolation and
>segregation of groups. The perfect example is Los Angeles. The author
>feels that it is the fault of the U.S. government for not being strict
>enough on cracking down on illegal immigration. There was a time when the
>government was very active in this, but now that our society is becoming
>more multicultural, people will see it as a bad thing if the government
>rejects legal and illegal immigrants. I feel that immigration is fine as
>long as it’s legal.

>
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