Integration and Immigration

Discussion of the recent unfolding of history.

Integration and Immigration

Postby omar » Mon Sep 24, 2018 5:14 am

I was watching Fareed Zakaria and he was talking about the problem of populism. He says that one thing in common, and right now I believe him, is the theme of xenophobia. It is always a challenged here in the United States by the fact that this is a country founded by immigrants, and yet, despite the utopian ideals of our Declaration of Independence, not all men are created equal. Jefferson wrote: "I advance it therefore as a suspicion only, that the blacks, whether originally a distinct race, or made distinct by time and circumstances, are inferior to the whites in the endowments both of body and mind." Quite a suspicion if you ask me. Further he adds:"Will not a lover of natural history then, one who views the gradations in the races of animals with the eye of philosophy, excuse an effort to keep those in the department of man as distinct as nature has formed them? This unfortunate difference of color and perhaps of faculty, is a powerful obstacle to the emancipation of these people."( .....) "Among the Romans emancipation required but one effort. The slave, when made free, might mix with, without staining the blood of his master (.....) When freed, he is to be removed beyond the reach of mixture."

That's from the hand of one of those "Fore-Fathers" we hold as unblemished saints.

The preocupation with the conservation of their purity never left the white majority in the United States. The Trump remark about getting more immigrants from white countries is an echo to the Jefferson observation and prescription. Immigration of Germans, Italians, even the Irish, follows a different path than the migration of brown people. Like the Roman slave Jefferson described, their absorption into the white identity of the majority of Americans was possible within a few generations. Brown and Blacks linger and rather take away from that identity. And that is only as far as color. There is also the "suspicion" Jefferson held that Blacks were also the inferior race intellectually ("mind"). This is the same "innocent" suspicion raised by Trump in his observation that most coming across from Mexico are criminals and rapist. In a vacuum this might have sounded as an observation made from a selection of facts, but, given the above, and all the rest of the history of the USA, can one do so? No.

Therefore, in my opinion, the issue is not about immigration but the identity of the immigrant, who they are, who we think they are, and how preoccupied the observer is about the purity of his blood-- You don't have to be a racist. You can be a simple defender of the maintenance of distance, and other circumstances, that though accidental have lead to a distinction that favored some and injured others. That misery is natural (and perhaps ordained by God?) so why spread it, like a disease?
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