In the end, the fourteenth amendment would prove to be the savior of immigrant dignity. The “equal protection of the laws” clause was finally interpreted in the right spirit and the Asian community in America got their long due recognition as genuine and legitimate citizens of the land. The verdict of Wong Kim Ark also consolidated the unity among various minority groups. With the support of the fourteenth amendment the case had overturned the 1857 decision in the Dred Scott case, which was another example of blatant discrimination on the grounds of race. In the latter case, it was the blacks who found themselves at the wrong end of the law. And now, the fourteenth amendment would grant both these oppressed communities their rightful place in the American demography (Rubenfeld, p. 1162).
It would be incorrect to think that there are no more challenges confronting the Asian American community. With growing concerns about competition from immigrants, some reactionary groups are calling for declaring United States a White Anglo-Saxon Protestant nation. Some subversive literature is being circulated to incite communal tensions. These groups are also organizing propaganda campaigns to oppose affirmative action policies. In this context it is imperative that all Asian Americans be cognizant of how their fundamental rights hang by a delicate thread. The minorities should continue reminding the powers that be of the provisions and the right interpretation of the Fourteenth Amendment. Otherwise, all progress in regard to civil and citizenship rights made in this country will be negated. The birthright citizenship is the primary right that guarantees all other subsequent rights. So it is vital that all citizens and aspirants strive toward safeguarding their basic rights from opportunistic and reactionary politicians (Brodey, p.715).
Recent American history had seen an influx of highly skilled Indian professionals. The Indian American community is relatively fortunate in the sense that they did not have to face the turmoil that the Chinese American community was subject to. There are other favorable factors as well. For example, the workers being well versed in English have fewer language problems. Being highly qualified brings with it its own privileges too. More importantly though, having started late, the Indian American community stepped in at an opportune time to avail of the foundation laid by other minorities toward universal basic rights. For example, although the 1917 Barred Zone Act prohibited all Asians from migrating to the U.S., the law did not affect the Indian American community in any substantial way – as their numbers were negligible at this point in time. Having said this, the Indian American community is not devoid of its own challenges. The face their own unique challenges in trying to balance between their traditional culture and the contemporary American society (Cantor 97).