Mexican immigrants to the United States, such as these farmworkers, are assumed by many White Americans to be in the country illegally, regardless of their documentation.

White Americans see many immigrants as ‘illegal’ until proven otherwise, survey finds

Fueled by political rhetoric about dangerous criminal immigrants, many white Americans assume low-status immigrants from Mexico, El Salvador, Syria, Somalia and other countries President Donald Trump labeled “shithole” nations have no legal right to be in the United States, new research in the journal American Sociological Review suggests.
Mark S. Wrighton

A global community of scholars

Chancellor Mark S. Wrighton has spoken out recently to underscore the global nature of our university community and our commitment to welcoming students, scholars, faculty and staff from all around the world. Chancellor Wrighton today shared a statement of principles building on those sentiments.

Recent immigration agency chief counsel criticizes House leadership for stalling immigration reform

“The House leadership’s procedural excuses for blocking a vote on critical immigration reform make little sense,” says Stephen Legomsky, professor of law at Washington University in St. Louis and the recent Chief Counsel of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services in the Department of Homeland Security. In that position he worked intensively with White House and DHS officials and played a major role on comprehensive immigration reform. “It’s now been 7 months since the Senate passed a bipartisan comprehensive immigration reform bill. Speaker Boehner should allow the people’s elected representatives in the House to consider it without further delay,” Legomsky argues.

New book examines impact of U.S. tobacco industry

WUSTL anthropologist Peter Benson’s new book, Tobacco Capitalism, examines the impact of the transformation of the U.S. tobacco industry on farmers, workers and the American public. The book reveals public health threats, the impact of off-shoring, and the immigration issues related to tobacco production, specifically in the rural, traditional tobacco-growing areas of North Carolina. “There are whole groups of people — farmers and farm workers — in our society who dedicate themselves to growing a crop that is vilified,” Benson says.

Multi-sector panel focuses on immigration policy

A Nov. 8 panel discussion will focus on immigration challenges and potential solutions. Congressman Wm. Lacy Clay, D-Mo., will serve as keynote speaker during the forum. To foster dialogue, representatives of both political parties — as well as those who advocate for immigrants’ rights and those with experience in enforcement agencies — will participate.

Illegal immigration — mass violations can reveal flaws in the law

Anyone who cares about the rule of law has to acknowledge that illegal immigration has serious social costs that cannot be casually dismissed, says immigration law expert Stephen Legomsky, JD, DPhil, the John S. Lehmann University Professor at Washington University in St. Louis School of Law. “When millions of individuals violate any law — whether it’s immigration, taxes or exceeding the posted speed limit — the rule of law takes a hit. But sometimes, mass violations reveal flaws in the law itself. At any rate, the rule of law also means that the penalties should not be disproportionate to the wrongdoing.”
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