In a speech calling to block funding for ICE—Immigration and Customs Enforcement—freshman Congress member Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez suggested that Latino immigrants deserve special status that exempts them from American rules. “Because we are standing on Native land, and Latino people are descendants of Native people,” she declared, “we cannot be told and criminalized simply for our identity and our status.”
In other words, she wants immigration laws enforced differently based on ethnicity and national origin. The disgraceful Immigration Act of 1924 made the same mistake: in an effort to curb mass immigration by Italians and East European Jews, the bill established quotas that judged migrants on where they came from, rather than their potential contributions to the country.
AOC’s attempt to give Latino migrants special, favorable status is just as wrong-headed as treating them more harshly based on nations of origin.