Yellow Peril was used to describe the danger that was posed by Chinese immigrants to the lifestyles of other races in the United States. It was also used metaphorically by the anti-Japanese who saw the expansion of their military army as a danger to other races. Indeed Japan was growing so fast as an industrial and military country so they took over China. There was a large outflow of Chinese from their country to other countries especially USA and Europe. Since the Chinese arrived in the United States in large numbers, they acted as cheap labour thus curtailed the prevailing high wages. The other pre-existing races realized a worse standard of living than they were accustomed to.
The people started lynching the Chinese immigrants so that their population could reduce and this set the government to place a policy that would curb the immigration (Daniels, 1988). The policy also ensured that the immigrants paid poll tax that was almost unaffordable so that they would find life hard and emigrate. In 1980, the phrase was reignited after the xenophobic attacks were at climax as Chinese or Japanese living in America were being killed. In this era, there was racial segregation for any person under the bracket of Asian descent. The Asiatic faced a lot of humiliations, murder or physical assault from the pre-existing residents. Their businesses and premises were also not spared as they were destroyed by fire or labor boycotts.
As the end of the Second World War grew nigh, the Japanese had already established carrier pilots for their military army. These planes were called N3N and nicknamed as yellow peril because of how fast it could transport the naval army that was also expanding rapidly. In the late nineteenth century especially 1960, there was rampant fear of both the increase in Chinese immigrants and the Japanese military expansion (Salyer, 1995). Yellow peril was also caused by the fact that the other western civilizations were now afraid that Japan would take over the world and become the super power. This was because of its large and merciless army which was able to assimilate most Asia countries into its domain. It was so powerful that it was able to defeat Russia, Manchuria, China and Korea thus the reason why it became a danger to be feared by many.
Today, the yellow peril may be described as problems like terrorism in which countries target one another. The bombings by al-Qaeda followers all over the world to different enemies especially the United States pose as a danger to the world. This is because all the allies of the United States find themselves in dire danger of the terrorists even if they have no affiliation whatsoever. Just like in the past, yellow peril is a consequence of tyrant leaders without mercy for other human beings so they make the wrong move. It is human nature to escape from danger zones to other safer places (Rupert, 2010). This movement may not be welcome by the citizens because the immigrants are normally desperate so they settle for lower payments for their labour.
This acceptance to become cheap labour lowers the prevailing wage rate and ruins the living standards in the country. This does not auger well with the citizens who now blame foreigners for their misery. This is the main cause of xenophobia like in South Africa where the citizens were killing immigrants from other countries claiming that they stole their jobs. In general, yellow peril can be defined as that assumed danger of one country's people taking over another in social, economic or demographic aspects. Yellow peril is just a cycle over the years but becomes more dangerous as years go by due to advancement of technology or weapons.
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