We begin with the story of Prudenica Martin Gomez, who died while attempting to cross the us-mexico border



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Border Framing Impacts

Impact—Otherization

Immigration policy is not neutral – it presupposes superiority as a citizen of the state while simultaneously tagging migrants as ‘parasites,’ creating an us-them mentality


Zylinska, Professor of New Media and Communications at the University of London, 2004 (Joanna, “The Universal Acts: Judith Butler and the biopolitics of immigration,” Cultural Studies 18.4, pg. 526) MM
Performativity of the public sphere: The ‘issue’ of asylum seekers lies at the very heart of the broader issue concerning the constitution of the public sphere. For Butler democratic participation in the public sphere is enabled by the preservation of its boundaries, and by the simultaneous establishment of its ‘constitutive outside’. She argues that in contemporary Western democracies numerous singular lives are being barred from the life of the legitimate community, in which standards of recognition allow one access to the category of ‘the human’. In order to develop a set of norms intended to regulate the state organism, biopolitics needs to establish a certain exclusion from these norms, to protect the constitution of the polis and distinguish it from what does not ‘properly’ belong to it. The biopolitics of immigration looks after the bodies of the host community and protects it against parasites that might want to invade it, but it needs to equip itself with tools that will allow it to trace, detect and eliminate these parasites. Technology is mobilized to probe and scan the bare life of those wanting to penetrate the healthy body politic: through the use of fingerprinting, iris recognition and scanners in lorries travelling, for example, across the English Channel, the presence and legitimacy of ‘asylum seekers’ can be determined and fixed.4 The bio-politics of immigration is thus performative in the sense of the term used by Butler; through the probing of human bodies, a boundary between legitimate and illegitimate members of the community is established. This process depends on a truth regime already in place, a regime that classifies some bodies as ‘genuine’ and others (be it emaciated bodies of refugees squashed in lorries in which they have been smuggled to the ‘West’, or confined to the leaky Tampa ship hopelessly hovering off the shores of Australia) as ‘bogus’. The bare life of the host community thus needs to be properly managed and regulated, with its unmanageable aspects placed in what Agamben (1998) calls a relation of exception. But the question that remains occluded in these processes of ‘life management’ is ‘[w]hich bodies come to matter - and why?’ (Butler 1993, p. xii).

The global mobility regime is premised on a paradigm of suspicion, working as a counterbalance to universal rights, and creating further inequality in the world


Shamir 05 (Ronen, Professor of Sociology at Tel-Aviv University, 2005 “Without Borders? Notes on Globalization as a Mobility Regime,” Sociological Theory 23.2 http://web.ebscohost.com/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?sid=a38a1096-53e7-4f5d-8fb2-678c41fae19b%40sessionmgr10&vid=4&hid=26)
In contrast, the theoretical contribution I propose in this article is to conceive processes of globalization as also producing “their own,” so to speak, principles of closure. I posit that above and beyond tensions such as between national sovereignty and human rights, we are witnessing the emergence of a new cultural/normative global principle that operates as a counterbalance to the normative principle of global human rights. We are witnessing the emergence of a global mobility regime, oriented to closure and to the blocking of access, premised not only on “old” national or local grounds but on a principle of perceived universal dangerous personhoods (hereinafter referred to as “a paradigm of suspicion”). The analytical framework of this article is that the mobility regime is constructed to maintain high levels of inequality in a relatively normatively homogenized world.5 In practice, this means that local, national, and regional boundaries are now being rebuilt and consolidated under the increased normative pressure of, and as a counterbalance to, the universal human rights regime. Thus, in contrast to the tendency to announce the “death of distance” (Cairncross 1997) and to declare a “mobility turn” (Urry 2003), in this article, I seek to conceptualize and theorize globalization in terms of processes of closure, entrapment, and containment. Specifically, I emphasize the extent to which processes of globalization are also concerned with the prevention of movement and the blocking of access. I posit that such processes should neither be theorized as a systemic malfunction nor as the unintended consequences of globalization. Rather, following the terminology of Simmel ([1908] 1950), I argue that the social nearness that globalization allows for is also constitutive of simultaneous processes of social distance.

The mobility regime profiles people, objectifying them as suspects and enabling the paradigm of suspicion to justify restriction and containment


Shamir 05 (Ronen, Professor of Sociology at Tel-Aviv University, 2005 “Without Borders? Notes on Globalization as a Mobility Regime,” Sociological Theory 23.2 http://web.ebscohost.com/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?sid=a38a1096-53e7-4f5d-8fb2-678c41fae19b%40sessionmgr10&vid=4&hid=26)
Profiling, and specifically racial and ethnic profiling, attracts significant attention from sociologists, public policymakers, and legal experts.15 In the United States, racial profiling commonly refers to any police-initiated action that relies on race, ethnicity, or national origin rather than on particular individual behavior as criteria for selecting whom to stop or arrest (Ramirez, McDevitt, and Farrell 2000). Here, I would like to expand the notion of profiling to cover a whole range of practices aimed at both one’s physical and social identity that are undertaken by a host of mobility regime market and governmental agents. I treat profiling and more precisely, biosocial profiling, as an emergent technology of social intervention that objectifies whole strata of people by assigning them into suspect categories, thereby enabling the paradigm of suspicion to be translated into elaborate practices of containment. In contrast to the modality of law, which punishes and locks away through a binary guilty/innocent distinction, and in contrast to the modality of the disciplines, which corrects behavior and occasionally quarantines through bell-curve matrices of normalization (Hunt 1992; Foucault 1977), profiling predicts behavior and regulates mobility by situating subjects in categories of risk. Now two qualifications of the above formulation must be immediately introduced. First, laws and disciplines are not substituted for profiling. Legal regulation and disciplinary procedures are widely applied and certainly play a central role in facilitating imprisonments, deportations, and a host of other types of containment. Rather, it would be more accurate to say that profiling emerges as a more discrete technology of intervention that facilitates and complements the regulation of mobility by legal and disciplinary means. Moreover, while laws and regulations may formally enable governance through profiling, they nonetheless lack the instruments and the type of gaze that allows profiling to function as a mode of spatial containment that is able—on the ground—to maintain the selectivity of boundary-crossing and to effectively distinguish those who are licensed to move from those who are not.

As with the past, the segregation and alienation of the Mexicans is due to the American unwillingness to simply encounter the Other. They simply characterize the Other as inferior and dehumanize them, which turns into an issue of de facto segregation. Immigration bills (CIR) cannot be applicable due to the deep rooted perceived inferiority of immigrants


Astor 2009 (Avi, Post-Doc @ University of Michigan, later Pompeu Fabra University, Department of Poltical and Social Sciences, “Unauthorized Immigration, Securitization and the Making of Operation Wetback”, Latino Studies (2009) 7, 5/29, http://www.palgrave-journals.com/lst/journal/v7/n1/full/lst200856a.html)
The practices of government agencies not only increased the number of undocumented immigrants in the United States, but also worked to isolate them from the social and political life of communities in the Southwest. A common practice of the INS was to disappear during the harvest season and then to magically reappear once the harvest was over to apprehend undocumented workers once their services were no longer needed (President's Commission on Migratory Labor, 1951; García, 1980). Aside from exposing the INS to be a tool of grower interests, this prevented immigrants from integrating into the social life of the communities in which they resided. A study conducted in the Lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas at the time attests to the social isolation of the immigrant population in the Southwest. The sociologists who conducted the study, Lyle Saunders and Olen Leonard (1976 (1951)), write that the typical immigrant “establishes few or no intimate ties of friendship – except occasionally with other wetbacks – and has human contacts only with the group with whom he works and lives and with the employer or foreman who hires him” (p. 45). Immigrants often lived in makeshift camps that were isolated from the rest of the community, or if they did manage to rent a place in town, it was almost always in the “Mexican” sections, which were segregated from the “Anglo” sections. During harvest season, when many immigrants were present, it was even common for them to live out in the open due to their employers’ unwillingness to give them shelter. Mexican immigrants were also excluded from recreational facilities and certain commercial enterprises. A quote by a Texas politician exemplifies the attitudes that justified such segregation: Although there is no discrimination in the Valley, of course there is segregation in a few things, but that is for hygienic, not racial reasons. Spanish-speaking people live in their own part of town and have their own businesses. They prefer it that way. They are excluded from swimming pools and barber shops. The exclusion from pools is because it is not possible to tell the clean ones from the dirty, so we just keep them all out. We just can’t have all those dirty, possibly diseased people swimming with our wives and children. (Saunders and Leonard, 1976 (1951), p. 67)¶ Through the practices of government agencies and social attitudes regarding Spanish-speaking populations, Mexican immigrants were reduced to what Agamben (1998) calls “bare life.” Lacking legal protection and political inclusion, immigrants had no recourse for complaint when they were mistreated or underpaid. However, the absence of legal protection and political inclusion alone does not explain why Mexican workers were so frequently the objects of discrimination and abuse. Rather, it was their isolation from social life that hindered general social awareness of the abuses they suffered and prevented people from the communities in which they resided from seeing them as social beings, rather than cheap labor or potential threats. The only advocate Mexican immigrants had was the Mexican government. However, the relative weakness of the Mexican state and its poor bargaining position made such advocacy ineffective (Calavita, 1992). Consequently, the welfare of Mexican immigrants was completely at the discretion of their employers and others with whom they interacted. This is well illustrated by Saunders and Leonard (1976 (1951)), as they write,¶ During the summer of 1950, the authors heard a good many accounts, pro and con, about the health conditions and services available to wetbacks. They ranged from the quite callous account of one farmer who playfully chased a wetback with a tractor, crushed his foot, and then turned him over to the Immigration Service for return to Mexico, to humanitarian behavior of an employer who paid medical bills averaging two hundred or more dollars each month for the care of his wetback employees. (p. 48)¶

Immigrants are always an inch away from exclusion from the geopolitical space of the United States and are labeled as “Illegal” by the community, stripping away the core of their humanity and their worth in the democratic process.


Johnson 2007 Dean of UC Davis School of Law(Kevin R., 2007“Opening the Floodgates; Why America Needs to Rethink Its Borders and Immigration Laws”)
The fear of deportation haunts many immigrants. They know that they can be torn away from established lives, family, friends, and community in an instant for lacking the proper immigration papers or for even something as minor as failing to file a change of address form with the U.S. government within ten days of moving. The undocumented immigrant who drives a car without a license faces the possibility of deportation every time he turns the key. An immigrant’s entire life in the United States is constantly at riskImmigrants become easy targets for harsh treatment because they have a distinctively negative image in popular culture. Although not officially found in the omnibus immigration law, the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952, the emotion-laden phrase “illegal aliens” figures prominently in popular debate over immigration.1 “Illegal aliens,” as their moniker strongly implies, are law-breakers, abusers, and intruders, undesirables we want excluded from our society. The very use of the term “illegal aliens” ordinarily betrays a restrictionist bias in the speaker. By stripping real people of their humanity, the terminology helps rationalize the harsh treatment of undocumented immigrants under the immigration laws.¶ Immigrants, as noncitizens, have little direct input in the political process, a process that ultimately controls their destinies. Unlike other minority groups, they cannot vote. Although interest groups, such as Latina/o and Asian-American advocacy groups, advocate on behalf of immigrants along with citizen minorities, they have limited political clout in arguing for fair treatment of people who cannot vote. Politicians generally do not court the “immigrant vote.” In the end, immigrants’ interests can be ignored by lawand policymakers in ways that other citizen minorities’ simply cannot be.2¶

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