The four different phases of modern migration

Immigration Reforms

For decades, immigration has been a central concern and a touchstone of the US political debate. These concerns are attributed to the fact that the US has been a significant recipient of thousands of immigrants across the globe, an action that carries with it numerous economic, security, and humanitarian problems.  Because of these problems and the growing concerns amongst US citizens on the increasing number of illegal immigrants in the country, the federal government has in the past tried to initiate numerous policies aimed at addressing the problem of the growing number of immigrants who are either legally or illegally entering the US borders. Modern migration can be grouped into four different periods. The first period was the mercantile period from 1500 to 1800 and was dominated by the Europeans (Citrin, 858).The second period of emigration was the industrial period, which begun in the early 19th century and stemmed from the spread of industrialization in Europe, which saw many Europeans move to the New World.

The third phase of migration was the postindustrial immigration which emerged during the 1960s. Interestingly, this particular migration phase was not dominated by an outflow from Europe but was characterized by the movement of people from less developed countries to developed countries. By the 1990s, the fourth phase of migration was birthed, and it became a global phenomenon. Some of the causes which the author outlines to be the major reasons for the increased migration in contemporary society are thedisintegration in the labour market of less developed countries and disproportionality in economic development between less developed and developed countries(Citrin, 956). Because of these two factors, many people in less developed countries always feel the need to migrate from their home countries to other foreign nations in search of better employment opportunities and other essential social services, such as education and health. It is such factors that have prompted and motivated thousands of illegal immigrants from Latin American countries to move into the US despite the harsh experiences and penalties that await them when moving across the US-Mexico border. The increasing number of illegal immigrants from Mexico has seen significant growth in the immigration enforcement apparatus, over $18 billion, which is far more than all other federal law enforcement combined(Tandaro et al., 101). However, based on the theoretical analysis provided in chapter two, there is no doubt that the menace of illegal immigration remains a complicated subject that cannot be addressed entirely anytime soon. Despite the huge financial resources and the strict immigration policies being enacted by the US federal government to curb the problem of immigration, the number of illegal immigrants in the US is likely to increase if nothing is done to address the primary reasons for the increased immigration.

If the disintegrated labour markets of less developed countries are not addressed, then the international migration trends will be sustained. This is because after one or two households begin participating in foreign wage labour, the remittances that are accrued from such immigration processes will motivate other households to migrate to developed countries to enjoy increased income earnings. It is, therefore, essential for developed countries to change their tactics on the issue of illegal migration and tackle the root cause of this problem as opposed to enacting laws and increasing financial budgets aimed at restricting entry of these illegal immigrants into their borders (Tandaro et al., 114). Therefore, rather than overseeing the growth of the immigration enforcement apparatus, the US government should collaborate with the Mexican government to help liberalize its market system and improve the economic growth of the count

Work Cited

Citrin, Jack, et al. “Public opinion toward immigration reform: The role of economic motivations.” The Journal of Politics 59.3 (1997): 858-881.

Todaro, Michael P., and Lydia Maruszko. “Illegal migration and US immigration reform: A conceptual framework.” Population and development review (1987): 101-114.

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