What Trump Was Actually Talking About
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Shapiro’s #2 of course depends upon, in part, upon the number of people admitted from a particular country: thus the millions of Turks in Germany tend to be over-represented among disability spongers, while the handful of Turks in America tend to be more like the late Ahmet Ertegun, the son of the Turkish ambassador to Washington who became a famous music producer. The fewer huddled masses, the better.

Americans understand this in other contexts: e.g., Stanford U. has all the money in the world plus thousands of unused acres of campus to expand upon, but has kept its student body growing much slower than the US population in order to boost the quality of its students.

Stanford could have a program like the US Diversity Visa Lottery to randomly select high school graduates to get into Stanford, but it doesn’t. Similarly, Stanford could have a program like the Temporary Protected Status to let people from, say, flooded Houston come be Stanford students for 17 years, but it doesn’t.

Why not? Because the larger and more randomly people are admitted to Stanford, the more they will behave like the average from their background and less like top students.

Unfortunately, when thinking about immigration policy, our elites tells us to think only in terms of schmaltzy sentimentality.

Shapiro’s point #3 is exactly what Trump was talking about: he was taking a stand against two kinds of immigration that are based on country-of-origins rather than the qualifications of individual immigration applicants: the Diversity Visa Lottery and the Temporary Protected Status for immigrants from countries such as El Salvador, Haiti, Honduras, and Nicaragua, too incompetent to deal well with their natural disasters. He was resisting a sleight-of-hand attempt by some Senators to re-allocate the 50,000 Diversity visas to the TPS program, which only benefits people from countries where the culture doesn’t deal adequately with disasters like floods and earthquakes.

Time Magazine has an informative summary of what Trump was talking about:

Here’s the Plan Trump Was Attacking When He Said ‘Shithole Countries’


… Lost in the furor over his “shithole” comment is the argument that Trump was making at the time.

The White House held the meeting to discuss a bipartisan immigration deal that would help undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children who got relief under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival program, foreign nationals who fled manmade and natural disasters and received temporary protected status (TPS) in the U.S. and immigrants seeking to come to the U.S. through a diversity lottery.

…As part of a harsher approach to immigration, the Trump Administration has sought to end TPS, or temporary protected status, for several groups of people who have been living in the United States for years:

  • 200,000 people who fled El Salvador during a deadly civil war in 1990 and after a catastrophic earthquake in 2001,
  • 58,000 people who fled Haiti after a deadly 2010 earthquake,
  • 57,000 people who fled Honduras after a devastating hurricane in 1999, and
  • 2,500 people who fled Nicaragua after the same hurricane
As the name implies, TPS was originally designed to allow refugees to stay in the U.S. for a short time, and it has to be renewed every 18 months. But since conditions have often not improved and ending the protection could pose a political risk, past administrations have typically done so.

… Trump’s revocation of temporary protected status for these four countries, not all of which have been finalized, put all of them at risk of immediate deportation, which in some cases could mean breaking up families.

The bipartisan group working on an immigration bill to present to Trump were looking for a way to help those people remain in the U.S. That’s where the second part comes in.

Another element of Trump’s stricter approach to immigration has been his proposal to end the Diversity Visa Lottery program, also known as the green card lottery. Under the program, the State Department offers 50,000 visas each year to immigrants from parts of the world where relatively few people have recently immigrated from.

Trump blamed a New York City attack in November on the lottery program, arguing that it was “helping to import Europe’s problems” and that the U.S. should instead move to a merit-based immigration system. …

Not everyone wants to end it, however. Members of the Congressional Black Caucus have sought to ensure that immigration could continue in some form from African countries that have benefited from the green card lottery in recent years.

That’s where the compromise came in. The bipartisan group recommended taking some of the diversity visa lottery slots for immigrants and instead giving them to people who had been covered under temporary protected status.

According to accounts of the meeting, that’s when Trump proposed removing Haitians from the plan.

During the discussion of the green card lottery, Trump repeated his criticism of the program, arguing that African immigrants were coming from “shithole countries.”

“Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?” he said, according to a Washington Post account.

Moreover, the chain migration nature of immigration means that country-of-origin based programs like the Diversity Visa Lottery and TPS establish beachheads in the U.S. for far more immigrants to follow.

Not surprisingly, people in countries with low Human Development Indices (Haiti, for instance, ranks #163 on the UN listing, while Norway ranks #1) tend to see immigrating to the U.S. as beneficial to them and their clans no matter how little they may contribute to America, while Norwegians are likely to immigrate to the U.S. only if their talents are such that they will be highly rewarded in the U.S.

The real question is whether American citizens should be self-ruling when it comes to immigration policy, or whether the other seven billion people on Earth have a civil right to move here.


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