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After They Closed the GatesJewish Illegal Immigration to the United States, 1921-1965$
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Libby Garland

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780226122458

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226122595.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 21 September 2021

American Law, Jewish Solidarity

American Law, Jewish Solidarity

(p.43) Chapter 2 American Law, Jewish Solidarity
After They Closed the Gates

Libby Garland

University of Chicago Press

This chapter explores how established Jewish organizations confronted the legal conundrums the quota laws posed. It examines Jewish leaders’ responses to the illegal immigration of Jews over the Mexico-Texas border and to the plight of Jews stranded in Europe with U.S visas rendered defunct by the Immigration Act of 1924. The quota laws posed new dilemmas for American Jewish leaders, pitting their desire to operate in solidarity with Jewish migrants against their need to be regarded as law-abiding Americans. Moreover, there were a number of gray areas that remained in the laws themselves. Jewish leaders exploited this lack of clarity in their efforts to shape the regime of U.S. immigration law as best they could. Whenever possible, they sought to engage in a strategic balancing act, trying to argue the cases of Jewish migrants without seeming to encourage or condone any law-breaking on the part of those migrants.

Keywords:   American Jewish leaders, El Paso, Emergency Committee on Jewish Refugees, illegal immigration, Jewish immigration, Jews, U.S. border, Louis Marshall, Martin Zielonka, quota laws

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