Latin American Immigrants

Essay by ladyheart143College, UndergraduateA, December 2007

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Latin American ImmigrantsThere are many Latin-American legal and illegal Immigrants living in the United States today. The Alien Act of 1798 granted the United States president the authority to banish any alien deemed dangerous. …The Naturalization Act of 1798 raised the number of years, from five to 14; an immigrant has to live in the United States before becoming eligible for citizenship (Events in Hispanic American history, n.d.). With such stringent rules on legal immigration, many immigrants have found other avenues for immigration and employment in the U.S.

Ralph Ortega, a reporter for the Star Ledger in New York, went under cover posing as an illegal immigrant to see how they get access to counterfeit Social Security cards and the necessary paperwork to attain jobs here in the United States. "Speaking only Spanish, I started my journey in May on the streets of Elizabeth. …To those I met, I asked only, How do I get papers?" (Ortega, 2006) In no time, he found a temporary job agency that sent him to work.

Ortega (2006) "We will take care of papers later," said the agency's manager, who gave me a job application. "Taking things slowly, I eventually paid him $140 to broker a deal with a seller. Within a month, I had a fake Social Security card and green card and, with these in hand, I would be able to work anywhere" (Ortega, 2006). When Ortega revealed his position as a reporter, the manager agreed to speak to him about the papers. Ortega (2006) quotes Inclan…"It is all right, Rafa," Inclan said smiling. He insisted he was not the seller of the documents that I purchased, and that he had not profited from the sale. His only reason for helping me, or any immigrant in need, he said, was compassion. "It...