The period prior to the exclusion of immigrants by the US Congress was marked by wrangles between the Asian workers and their American counterparts. These fights lead to the killing of a significant number of Chinese people. An example from our reading is the Race Riot at Rock Springs in 1885 which saw 28 Chinese men loss their life, property damaged and scores injured as the Americans turned against the Chinese over what they considered as the Chinese failure to strike for higher wages.
Both the class and race factor were substantial reasons for the exclusion of immigrants especially those from Asia. I consider the class factor to be more significant as compared to racism. This is because both the Americans and the Chinese worked together throughout the 19th century with few racism wrangles between them. The Chinese would work in the mines of California independent of any influence or threat from the Americans. They would keep most of the gold mined as if it was in their country and still no whites rose against them.
The uprising against the Asians was triggered by the white’s realization that the Chinese people were not willing to demand for better wages. They seemed to be content with what they received. This position was not received well by labor unions which at this time were up in arms demanding for better pay from their employers. The wage question was to a larger extent the main reason why immigrants were rocked out.
The Congress is a political body whose mandate is the protection of its people (Americans). It had to pass an act that best suited the needs of the Americans and brought an end to the continued wrangles between its people and the immigrants. It could not have done it in a better way than excluding the Asian migrants. On the other hand, the race factor was influenced by the disagreements between the immigrant workers and the Americans. Racism portrays itself mostly when one group tries to undermine the other. That is when people get to realize that they are surely from different races. I think if it were not for the class factor, racism would not have stood as a major concern for the exclusion of the immigrants.