Friday, July 8, 2011

In which I lose my libertarian cred

'Puter nails the problem of open immigration:
Mr. Leal's shout of "Viva Mexico!" on the commencement of his quick, state-funded trip to Hell, indicates a pressing problem with Mexican immigration generally. Many Mexican immigrants, legal and illegal, feel little or no loyalty to America.
It's true that this is a nation of immigrants.  It's also true (although you won't read this in the WaPo) that this is a nation formed of assimilated immigrants. 

I'm willing to be persuaded that large numbers of unassimilated immigrants aren't a problem, but I haven't seen any good data on it.  Quite frankly, it looks like nobody who could do this research wants to do it, which makes me suspicious.


Alan said...

If we weren't a socialist welfare state immigration wouldn't be a problem. Just like it wasn't a problem in the 1800's.

There WERE large numbers of unasimilated immigrants. That's how you got China town, little Italy and all the other ethnic neighborhoods.

Mayberry said...

What Alan said... And these days I have little to no loyalty to anything but me and my family. It's getting pretty harsh down here in the cheap seats.

NotClauswitz said...

We have plenty of "Little Mexico's" scattered around California, the inhabitants call them Barrios. That being said, California was mostly founded by Mexicans who fled freakin' Mexico in an effort to avoid the rapacious, tax-hungry, corrupt and cruel Spanish Govt. and it's religious arm, the Catholic Church.
Those who could get far enough to the North escaped that dual burden and gimlet-eye, and live rather more freely, doing as they pleased.
Something a lot of Californians would like today with the corrupt and inept Federal Govt. descended into and replacing/displacing the Spanish system...

word: unite! srlsly?

Sevesteen said...

Did the former waves of immigrants intend to assimilate, or did it happen after they had experience with the US?

Paul, Dammit! said...

I'm going to be the voice of dissent here, in that I think your statement is oversimplifying things. I'm sitting at a bar in Salvador, Brazil, right now. My wife hasn't been to this city in 12 years, and having worked here back before she emigrated, it's been a homecoming. As happy as she is, she's said several times in the past few days that she's 'too Americanized' now, and will be happy to go home when this trip is over.
I'm inclined to think now that with increased connectivity, there's a lag in assimilation time- it's no longer a critical part of living in the US, and home is literally a skype message or phone call away. In my own example, it's taken my wife (who was a VERY unassimilated immigrant) 5 years of experiencing full-service Americana with a guided tour led by yours truly, for her to assimilate more fully.

Without the necessity, it doesn't seem need is enough, and before we do get nostalgic, the earlier point about ethnic enclaves being an earlier form of this seems right on. The North End, Chinatown, Quincy, Southie, Everett and Jamaica Plain in MA spring right to mind.
This is more than an intellectual exercise, to me- seeing firsthand my wife's realization that she's been selectively remembering the good times back home is a mixed bag emotionally.
Also, there really is something in the water here. The women are otherworldly.

Borepatch said...

Paul, you speak from the heart and say something that people need to hear. The other side, however, are the professional race-baiters like La Raza.

Removing barriers to assimilation seems to be important. Interesting thoughts about the interconnectedness of today.

Traditionally, it's taken a generation to assimilate (the bi-lingual generation) and another generation before the kids can't talk to the relatives back home.

But =5 to your comment on the ladies down there. That, the churiascaria and the cachasha, I might be tempted to go native myself if I were 25 ...

TOTWTYTR said...

@Alan, those people might have lived in homogenous neighborhoods, but they were assimilated. They came here, learned American culture while adding bits of their own, learned English and foreswore allegiance to their home governments in order to become citizens.

From my wife's experience teaching in inner city schools, that doesn't happen today. Immigrants come here looking for handouts from America because "we owe them". They have no allegiance to this country, often they refuse to even stand when the national anthem is played or the pledge is recited. They are quite open about wanting to go back home just as soon as they have enough money. Of course when that runs out, they can just come back for more.

Our largesse, or more accurately our government's, has created this monster.