From Claude Morita, resent Jan. 20, 2001
Imin is the term for immigrants, immigration, to immigrate, etc. It is demeaning with respect to the fact that Japanese in Japan are who represent the nation, its history, etc., and anyone who immigrates into the country and who emigrate elsewhere are a few rungs down on the ladder.
It is less demeaning though than dekasegi nin.
Japanese is a language that has hierarchies built into the language. The implications are there for anyone to twist, use creatively, or insult, depending on what kind of character you are.
From Betty Shibayama, Jan. 21, 2001:
Mom would always say that the reason she came to the US was because as a child in school her teacher encouraged her students to go to the US for the benefit of Japan. Since Japan is a small country it dioes not have enough resources for all of its population. Mom said that she felt she was patriotic, by going to the US because she was helping Japan.
Memories of Early Days