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Homeless Immigrants Face Overwhelming Odds on NYC Streets

Homeless Immigrants Face Overwhelming Odds on NYC Streets

HOMELESSNESS:
Millions of immigrants have come to the U.S. with the dream of a new American way of life. While that dream remains intact for many, others have given up — mental health, trauma, language obstacles, family instability, and the rising cost of living are among many contributing factors.
“The man took two steps backward. “Well, you ain’t in your country now. You’re in California, an’ we don’t want you goddamn Okies settlin’ down.’’Ma’s advance stopped. She looked puzzled. “Okies?’’ she said softly. “Okies.’’“Yeah, Okies! An’ if you’re here when I come tomorra, I’ll run ya in.’’ He turned and walked to the next tent and banged on the canvas with his hand. “Who’s in here?’’ he said.” (Chapter 7)
Steinbeck focused on many homeless families throughout the novel. The first true homeless person we met was ex-pastor Casey. This starts off as an uncommon factor, but shortly after the reader realizes that mostly everyone is homeless. This was due to the banks powerful role in the novel. Homelessness in this particular novel is so widespread that it affects most of the individuals in the Midwest during the Dust Bowl.

voanews.com
The Case for a Higher Minimum Wage

The Case for a Higher Minimum Wage

LIVING WAGE: The political posturing over raising the minimum wage sometimes obscures the huge and growing number of low-wage workers it would affect. An estimated 27.8 million people would earn more money under the Democratic proposal to lift the hourly minimum from $7.25 today to $10.10 by 2016. And most of them do not fit the low-wage stereotype of a teenager with a summer job. Their average age is 35; most work full time; more than one-fourth are parents; and, on average, they earn half of their families’ total income.
In chapter 26 Tom is hired to pick peaches for 25 cents a day. Tom later sees Casey where he explains that the owner of the peach orchards cut wages to two-and-a-half cents a box, so the men went on strike. Now the owner has hired a new group of men in hopes of breaking the strike. Casey predicts that by tomorrow, even the strike-breakers will be making only two-and-a-half cents per box.

nytimes.com
The Study of Man: Prejudice in American Society - Commentary Magazine

The Study of Man: Prejudice in American Society - Commentary Magazine

PREJUDICE:
During the past ten years or so the study of prejudice, has figured itself as a separate discipline and developed several new emphases. “Intergroup relations” are no longer studied merely as one aspect of American social life, but as a problem that exists in many countries, and indeed as a factor in international relations. In the United States, moreover, the analysis of intergroup relations is no longer restricted to racial or ethnic minorities, but now includes minorities defined by religious, cultural, occupational, or political criteria. There has been a tendency, finally, to shift our interest from a social to a psychological framework—from behavior patterns or institutions to attitudes or beliefs, from discrimination to prejudice, from a sociologist’s to a social psychologist’s view of minority-majority relations.“Muley went on, “Like a damn ol’ graveyard ghos’. I been goin’ aroun’ the places where stuff happened. Like there’s a place over by our forty; in a gully they’s a bush. Fust time I ever laid with a girl was there. Me fourteen an’ stampin’ an’ jerkin’ an’ snortin’ like a buck deer, randy as a billy-goat. So I went there an’ I laid down on the groun’, an’ I seen it all happen again. An’ there’s the place down by the barn where Pa got gored to death by a bull. An’ his blood is right in that groun’, right now. Mus’ be. Nobody never washed it out. An’ I put my han’ on that groun’ where my own pa’s blood is part of it.’’ He paused uneasily. “You fellas think I’m touched?’”
(Chapter 18)
Prejudice is an issue that affects many different groups in modern society. However, in the past, prejudice played a much larger role. The Grapes of Wrath had a strange way of presenting prejudice because it wasn't based off of social class or skin color, but rather the origin of someone's descent. The native Californians were very prejudice against the "Okies".

commentarymagazine.com
Under Trump, Border Patrol Steps Up Searches Far From the Border

Under Trump, Border Patrol Steps Up Searches Far From the Border

BORDER CONTROL:The Border Patrol is aggressively using a little-known authority to set up checkpoints and search private property to crack down on illegal immigration.
Before the Joads even set foot on its soil, California proves to be a land of vicious hostility rather than of opportunity. The cold manner of the police officers and border guards seems to testify to the harsh reception that awaits the family.

nytimes.com
Singapore's migrant workers struggle to get paid

Singapore's migrant workers struggle to get paid

INCOME NEQUALITY: It's a bustle of activity in the drop-in center. Men line up to sign their names in a book and claim tokens for a free meal, redeemable at cheap restaurants in Singapore's Little India district.
In chapter 26 Tom is hired to pick peaches for 25 cents a day. Tom later sees Casey where he explains that the owner of the peach orchards cut wages to two-and-a-half cents a box, so the men went on strike. Now the owner has hired a new group of men in hopes of breaking the strike. Casey predicts that by tomorrow, even the strike-breakers will be making only two-and-a-half cents per box.(Farmers Association)

cnn.com
Hoovervilles - Facts & Summary

Hoovervilles - Facts & Summary

HOOVERVILLES: During the Great Depression, which began in 1929 and lasted approximately a decade, shantytowns appeared across the U.S. as unemployed people were evicted from their homes. As the Depression worsened in the 1930s, causing severe hardships for millions of Americans, many looked to the federal government for assistance. When the government failed to provide relief, President Herbert Hoover (1874-1964) was blamed for the intolerable economic and social conditions, and the shantytowns that cropped up across the nation, primarily on the outskirts of major cities, became known as Hoovervilles.
Life in roadside camps resembled life with poverty for unwanted people as President Hoover did with hoovervilles. When left to their own devices, and given shelter from the corrupt social system that keeps them down, the migrants make the first steps toward establishing an almost utopian mini-society. Moreover, life in Weedpatch disproves the landowners’ beliefs that “Okies” lead undignified, uncivilized lives. Indeed, the migrants show themselves to be more civilized than the landowners, as demonstrated by the way in which they respond to the Farmers’ Association’s plot to sabotage the camp. Most of the wealthy landowners believe that poverty-stricken, uneducated farmers deserve to be treated contemptuously.

history.com
Australia’s Brutal Treatment of Migrants

Australia’s Brutal Treatment of Migrants

TREATMENT OF OKIES/MIGRANTS: Since 2013, Australia has deployed its navy to turn back boats with migrants, including asylum seekers, before they could get close to its shores. Military personnel force vessels carrying people from Iraq, Afghanistan, Sudan, Eritrea and other conflict-roiled nations toward Indonesia, where most of the journeys begin. A boat captain recently reported that Australian authorities paid him $30,000 to turn back. If true, that account, which the Australian government has not disputed, would represent a violation of international laws designed to prevent human smuggling and protect asylum seekers.
Before the Joads even set foot on its soil, California proves to be a land of vicious hostility rather than of opportunity. The cold manner of the police officers and border guards seems to testify to the harsh reception that awaits the family.

nytimes.com
Labor Unions During the Great Depression and New Deal

Labor Unions During the Great Depression and New Deal

LABOR UNIONS: In the early 1930s, as the nation slid toward the depths of depression, the future of organized labor seemed bleak. In 1933, the number of labor union members was around 3 million, compared to 5 million a decade before. Most union members in 1933 belonged to skilled craft unions, most of which were affiliated with the American Federation of Labor (AFL).
In chapter 26 Tom is hired to pick peaches for 25 cents a day. Tom later sees Casey where he explains that the owner of the peach orchards cut wages to two-and-a-half cents a box, so the men went on strike. Now the owner has hired a new group of men in hopes of breaking the strike. Casey predicts that by tomorrow, even the strike-breakers will be making only two-and-a-half cents per box.(Farmers Association)

loc.gov
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