Comment Rescue: Immigration Motivations
I agree with most of what you say, Gabriel. I would go even farther to say that government does not have the moral right to tell people where they can live. The United States did a little of that with Native Americans in the 19th century. Russia and China have done significant amounts of that. India and Pakistan, explicitly or implicitly, moved millions between their new born countries. ISIS is expelling (or killing) any Christians living in the areas they have conquered recently. And on and on. I hear few defending such forced mass movements.
I see no more moral argument to justify the converse, i.e. “you can’t move,” instead of “you must move.”
Yes, having people of different nationalities come here, or to any other country, will change the country. Koreans in Los Angeles running taco trucks. Who’d a thunk it? What gives anyone the right to decide that the country can not be/should not be changed in the future? That’s the kind of attitude that leads to hardening of the arteries in a country, an inflexibility that will eventually break a country. Cf. Japan’s struggles with a shrinking population and a stagnant economy. ditto Europe. Adapt or die!
And “them” being here will change them, too. It is interesting to watch the evolution of immigrant peoples over the generations. Grandchildren who don’t speak the same language as their grandparents, despite the best efforts of their parents to make them learn the old country’s language. Parents tut-tutting their third generation children marrying people who aren’t of their ethnic group. The Mexican women’s national soccer team has players with Hispanic last names and first names like Emily because the players grew up in the United States. (They actually had to institute a rule that you have to pass a test on Spanish in order to play for Mexico!) I have a relative, by marriage, who is a Haitian-American, a MD who is married to a Japanese-American. He actually made the statement recently, “What I like about being Japanese is…..” In America, ethnic identity begins to wane significantly with the third generation.
One of my friends is half Greek and half Mexican, a second generation American. He quotes his Greek father as saying that “the reason Europeans all hate Americans is that they know that all of us came from over there and that means that their families didn’t have the guts to get up off their ass and come over here, to make a life in a new country.” A second generation Irish-American spoke about how his father worked in the mines of Montana. “When I was 11, I asked him, “why do you do it? Why do you go down in that hole every day?” He looked at me and said, “Making a better life for the likes of you.” I never asked him about it again.” Why would you not want people like that to be here?
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