Thursday, December 15, 2005

Immigration Watch


Immigration is a topic that looms large over the American psyche these days. While American popular culture has traditionally celebrated the individual immigrant coming to America in the hope using our economic and political freedom to make a better life for himself, the reality is that immigrants form communities and not all communal relations are positive.

In the past it was common for immigrants to work for low wages and live in conditions, which natives would not tolerate. Immigrant groups competed for jobs and housing with our urban poor and underclass. Such rivalries have led to violence between gangs and occasionally larger riots such as the New York Draft Riot or the LA Riots. Of course, there are always other issues at play, but simmering resentments become inflammable in situations of economic dislocation, competing claims of victimhood, and political and social unrest. Today, with the rise of the welfare state and multi-culturalism, these tensions are exacerbated. Groups compete not only for jobs but also political patronage and welfare.

The cover story of the December 19th edition of The American Conservative relays an ominous account of the simmering conflict between African American and Mexicans, many illegal, in Watts and Compton Los Angeles.

While many liberals and American conservatives believe that assimilation is the answer, the rioting in France this year should give us pause. Any group of immigrants large enough to form a cohesive block can be insular enough to resist integration and assimilation. At a time when the elites of the host country, the country of origin, and other immigrants have come to accept multi-culturalism and Third Worldism, and when international travel is easy and foreign media ever present, assimilation is far more difficult. Applied to aliens from neighboring countries and holding revanchist or religious grudges, assimilation may be impossible. At the very least action must be taken before we are overwhelmed.

We are more fortunate than others. We do not yet face rioting as in France or the attempted imposition of Sharia codes of conduct on women by rape as in Sweden. Perhaps the most biased reporting of the past week has been over the Sydney riots. While it has been reported as a neo-Nazi or white assault on Lebanese immigrants, the reality is quite different. The riots were sparked by an assault on Australian lifeguards in a beach, which has become all too dangerous for Australian women. Faced with a national, provincial, and city governments, which have crippled their police forces and allowed the creation of "no-go" zones in immigrant communities, open organized crime, the community took the law into their own hands. While, this lawlessness is intolerable, the reneging of the social contract by the Australian government created this situation. As the leftist establishment has disarmed individuals, and handcuffed police, the only possible response by the community is mass action. Moreover, the violence is hardly one sided. Already, a Sydney church has mysteriously burned and there have been assaults on police and property.

Sadly, our political elites still do not understand the problem. Even as the president and congress House and Senate try to reach an agreement on border security, they are silently pushing through a guest-worker program, which will effectively be an amnesty for illegal aliens. This is a classic bait and switch at the expense of America by our political and media class. The true costs of such a subsidy may be far higher than the welfare and infrastructure payments for immigrants and laborers.

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