Saturday, April 08, 2006

It's the Latinos, stupid!

His title, not mine.

But the point is well-made.
Sometime in the next forty-eight hours go read this article by Leon Hadar. Otherwise whatever you say in response to Monday's Day of Action might sound even more ignorant than it should. one seriously argues that the illegal immigrants are responsible for any of the structural problems facing the US economy, in particular the decline in manufacturing jobs. Similarly, most analysts agree that the majority of the immigrants, certainly those who arrive from Mexico and Latin America, don't pose any security risks.
In the 19th century and early 20th century, even Catholic and Jewish immigrants from Ireland, Italy and Eastern Europe were regarded by Americans as too alien and 'exotic' to be able to assimilate into the Anglo-Saxon Protestant majority in the United States. But the difference between then and now was that those immigrants wanted to assimilate into the American society and were provided with incentives to do so.

The current immigrants from Latin America - illegal and legal - are in a society that celebrates 'multiculturalism'. And that provides them with inducements to maintain their Hispanic identity, as well as to preserve their ties to the 'old country', which is just across the border and not thousands of miles away in Europe or Asia.

The result is the growing expectations (or fears) among middle-class white Americans that their country would soon be overwhelmed by an Hispanic majority - with some parts of the country becoming the way Miami and Los Angeles are today - that is, bilingual communities of 'Anglos' and 'Latinos', where the Spanish-language media now reaches a larger audience than English-language newspapers and television stations.

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Hoots' take: They're here. Deal with it.

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