What I learned from this week’s readings actually came from our time at the Immigration Museum. At the museum it seemed that in the late 1800’s to the late 1900’s immigration was actually encouraged as a way to fill positions and build the economy in Argentina. After the reading on immigrant’s rights it seems that a restriction was put into place in 1981 to limit the masses entering the country, so the once simple process of coming to Argentina and finding a job which would allow them to stay in the country has become much more difficult. I find this interesting because after our guest lecture we learned that today Argentina’s health care access laws are almost too lenient since citizens of neighboring Bolivia come to the country to utilize services then leave without intending to stay in Argentina. It seems that Argentina needs to find a good middle ground between the restriction act of 1981 and increased access policies of the early 2000’s. A good policy would allow immigration for those that want to enter the country and fair access to resources, but would also keeping policies strict enough not to corrupt health care and education systems.
After reading the NY Times article on deportation of immigrants, I am sad to see that other countries have similar policy ideas to what our president in the US is trying to put into place in terms of immigration restriction. For a country that is historically made up of immigrants, I have noticed that many mention the earlier European influence and often ignore the newer neighboring country immigration. I have come to understand that like the US, Argentina is proud of its European heritage, but considers immigration after that wave as generally unsafe and unwanted. The views of American citizens’ superiority in the US and Argentinian citizens’ superiority in Argentina currently dominating in their governments can cause uncomfortable and unfriendly relationships with other countries. The Trump Administration has put a lot of focus on keeping those in Mexico and Latin America in general out of the country, so I have never thought that those countries may have similar feelings about keeping their own country “protected”. Since many view American as one of the most unwelcoming countries due to its immigration policies, I never realized that other countries may share common ideas. It is unfair for both the US and Argentina to be blaming migrants for issues within the country such as unemployment in the former case and crime in the latter.
The third article for this week touched on the improvements in health that Argentina has seen recently. Most countries we have been to this far on the trip have a strong focus on non-communicable diseases, but it seems that Argentina has only recently dealt with a few communicable diseases such as dengue, rubella, measles, and TB. Also, like in China, smoking seems to be a top priority due to its prevalence. This article reports a significant decrease in cigarette use between 2006 and 2012, but just walking the streets I have already seen a much higher number of smokers than I experiences in Australia. Altogether, though there seem to be many recent improvements in Argentine health, there is always a push for even better health for a country’s citizens.