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1.19. Alien Immigration Restriction Laws.

These alien restriction laws make America and Australia look very selfish and foolish before mankind as a whole. Take the three following instances against the Chinese:—In 1903 America sent a special commission to Pekin to invite and urge the Chinese Government to send exhibits to the St. Louis Exhibition of 1904. China accepted in good faith, and then the Treasury Department in Washington drew up a series of regulations subject to their degrading and inhuman restriction law, requiring “that each exhibitor, upon arrival at any seaport in this country, should be photographed three times for purposes of identification, and should file a bond in the penal sum of $5,000, the conditions of which were that he would proceed directly and by the shortest route to St. Louis, would not leave the Exposition grounds at any time after his arrival there, and would depart for China by the first steamer sailing after the close of the Exposition. Thus a sort of Chinese rogues' gallery was to be established at each port, and the Fair grounds were to be made a prison pen for those who had come here as invited guests of the nation, whose presence and aid were needed to make the display a success. It is only just to add than upon a most vigorous protest being made against these courteous (?) regulations by the Chinese Government and a threat to cancel their acceptance of our invitation, the rules were withdrawn and others more decent substituted. But the fact that they were prepared and seriously presented to China shows to an extent of injustice and discourtesy our mistaken attitude in regard to Chinese immigration has carried us.”— Hon Chester Holcombe, in “The Outlook,” April 23, 1904.

Mr. A. J. Brown, in “New Forces in Old China,” quotes the following illustrations of supreme absurdity from the Hon. Chester Holcombe—“A Chinese merchant of San Francisco visited his native land and brought back a bride, only to find that she was forbidden to land on American soil. Another Chinese merchant and his wife, of unquestioned standing in San Francisco, made a trip to China, and while there a child was born. On returning to their home in America, the sapient officials could interpose no objection to the readmission of the parents, but peremptorily refused to admit the three-months old baby, as, never having been in this country, it had no right to enter it! Neither of these preposterous decisions could be charged to the stupidity or malice of the local officials, for both were appealed to the Secretary of the Treasury in Washington, and were officially sustained by him as in accordance with the law, though in the latter case, the Secretary, then the Hon. Daniel Manning, in approving the action, had the courageous good sense to write: ‘Burn all this correspondence, let the poor little baby go ashore, and don't make a fool of yourself.’ ”

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