Opponents of mass immigration, when not hit with nastier charges, sometimes find themselves on the defensive about their supposed lack of cultural open-mindedness.
They are accused of being grouchy, close-minded troglodytes who, in the lyrics of country singer Allan Jackson, can't tell "the difference in Iraq and Iran"—dumb, doughy whites from the red states too culturally backward to appreciate the joys of the foreign - the folks Michael Moore can't wait to see disappear.
(Look at number 8 from the 17 reasons not to slit your wrists over the defeat of John Kerry on Michael Moore's website:
"88% of Bush's support came from white voters. In 50 years, America will no longer have a white majority. Hey, 50 years isn't such a long time! If you're ten years old and reading this your golden years will be truly golden and you will be well cared for in your old age."(And they call us "haters"?)
Immigration in all forms is allegedly an injection of the serum of life into a moribund—usually white—corpse. [Click here for an American version of this argument; here for a Scottish version].
Inevitably, an immigration enthusiast will trot out anecdotes confirming his cosmopolitan superiority:
The clever Iranian exchange student he hosted. The Salvadoran family sponsored by his church whose mother made delicious tamales for the culturally deprived folks in Omaha. Etc., etc.These would-be culture-stimulators miss a whopping point: When a critical mass of an alien culture descends, it doesn't enrich—it displaces.
Exploration and cultural experimentation are sharply distinct from, and often at cross-purposes with, what we are seeing in the United States and Europe now.
Transplanting entire Mexican barrios across the border isn't going to enrich us, because the barrio is big enough to be self-enclosed. Miguel need not interact with you because he can—and does—interact with Julio instead.
And why shouldn't he? He's got Spanish everywhere he turns right here in the United States.
On every telephone help line I call, I wait patiently while the Espanol option is provided. What number do I press to get my country back?
One of the great delusions of the multicultural crowd is that immigrant eagerness to come to the United States is driven by some heroic desire to fill Americans with cultural thrills.
So eager in fact, they'll zip their kids into - and I'm not being ethnically insensitive this time - piñatas to get here.
Of course immigrants want to "make a better life for themselves." So do bank robbers. Should we be impressed?
What about the immigrant who is willing to commit the crimes Americans aren't willing to commit?
Here is a case in point from New York:
In 2002 Jose Hernandez, a 29 year-old illegal alien, and four of his illegal alien friends, attacked and raped a woman in Queens, New York.
Last year, after the usual delay, the five men were sentenced to prison terms of roughly twenty years a piece. [New Beginnings, Tragic Endings Mark 2004 by Paul Menchaca, Queens Chronicle, 12/30/04]
This was the exchange between the judge and Mr. Hernandez.
"'Please forgive me because I don't want any more time here,' Jose Hernandez said through an interpreter. 'I have family back in Mexico. My father passed away, and who is going to take care of my wife and my child?'
"'Mr. Hernandez, [the victim] had family and loved ones as well,' Kew Gardens Supreme Court Justice Randall Eng shot back." [PARK RAPE FIEND GETS 22 YEARS by Scott Shifrel, New York Daily News, Mar 25, 2004]Funny, I must have missed Jose Hernandez's Soho gallery opening.
Immigration enthusiasts more culturally open-minded?
In reality, the opposite is true.
Cultures aren't preserved by mass immigration; they're destroyed by it. For cultures to thrive and bear fruit, they need quiet, calm and isolation —literally like cultures in a Petri dish.
Medici Florence, Mozart's Vienna and the Ireland that bore Joyce, Shaw and Yeats were hardly the multiracial war zones of the Western world today.
By today's standards, I suppose they would count as hotbeds of xenophobia in desperate need of de-homogenizing.
Yet the myths of cultural enrichment persist. As Steve Sailer has noted, the American elite equates immigration with cute little ethnic restaurants—not the crowding, economic pressure and culture clashes experienced by those who live closer to the ground.
Indian food in Manhattan? I love the stuff myself. And I know how important it is to our ruling class. So I have a proposal:
After cutting off mass immigration, Congress could enact a "Vindaloo Visa" for a select number of foreigners who promise to set up cute little ethnic restaurants—should the cute-little-ethnic-restaurant quotient drop to dangerously low levels.
The spicy stuff can be imported. It is our culture here that needs preserving.