I was corresponding with friends from Australia and England, both of whom mentioned how their countries have changed significantly in the past twenty or so years. In England, the primary change is from Muslim immigrants; in Australia, the change is from Muslim immigrants and Chinese investment. That made me realize that immigration ain’t what it used to be.
As the child of immigrants myself, I used to think of immigration — legal immigration — as an unalloyed benefit. It constantly infused America with fresh blood …
Looking at immigration trends, though, I’m beginning to have my doubts.
For a long time, the vast bulk of America’s immigrants came from countries that were European and subscribed to the Judeo-Christian tradition. Yes, we had Asian immigrants starting at the end of the 19th century but, for better or worse, the early immigrants were forced to assimilate — and they arrived at a time when assimilation was considered a virtue.
When I was growing up in the 1960s and 1970s in California, the Asian immigrants were all refugees from communism. They were thrilled to embrace freedom. They worked extraordinarily hard; made money; and sent their bright, hard-working kids to the best colleges. …
It’s all different and worse now:
Immigration is different nowadays, and it’s not just because assimilation is considered evil. That always baffled me. You don’t have a country if you don’t have a shared idea of what being a member of that country is. It’s only now that I understand that the whole point is that Americans not have a country.
Leftists used to frame their anti-assimilation rhetoric as a virtue. They were turning America into a colorful “tossed salad,” instead of a drab “melting pot.” The stated theory was that, rather than immigrants losing their uniqueness, they retained who they were, while melding into a part of a tasty, dynamic national salad. But that’s not what happens.
What happens is tribalism, which is a retreat to Stone Age behavior. In neighborhoods, it leads to gang warfare. Within a large nation, it leads to battles for political spoils and a willingness to commit national suicide, because there’s no “nation” left in which anyone can believe and for which anyone is willing to fight.
Aside from the push for assimilation, the nature of immigrants has changed. The Latin America immigrants theoretically come from a Judeo-Christian tradition, but that’s not really true. They’ve lived through decades of Marxism, including Marxism in their own churches, in the form of liberation theology. Too many of them don’t come to America because it’s a place of freedom. They come here because the government handouts are better — and, of course, the moment they arrive, they are told do not assimilate. They just become a few more little salad pieces of Marxist Latin America taking root across America.
The Muslims who come here are resistant to assimilation even without being told not too. Their religion tells them they are conquerors and that the welfare they receive is their jizya: the tax the unbelievers owe to the Muslim overlords. These are not people who have bought into or will buy into the American way. And yes, of course there are exceptions. There are to everything. But en masse, Muslims are not an easily assimilable group and they’re now being told not to assimilate. …
Sure, help yourselves to our young girls … search on “Rotherham” if you don’t get that British reference.
If it were up to me, I’d crack down even harder on illegal immigration and require all immigrants to attend civics classes telling them about the Constitution, the wonders of the free market, and the beauty of a place with a common American culture, that nevertheless allows them to retain their identities in their homes and their communities.
The West is now run by ideologues who are pursuing a fantasy at our expense. The left’s echo chamber is positively dangerous because it’s so far detached from reality.