Thursday, August 18, 2005

More Immigration Hysteria

The lonely libertarian usually loves economist Thomas Sowell. (His book The Vision Of The Anointed is the sort of book that should be required reading in high school and college.) Yet when it comes to immigration, he seems to ignore many of his own lessons in logic and problem solving. Check out as Sowell's Townhall column from August 16th.

Some choice passages ...

Bombings in London, Madrid and the 9/11 terrorist attacks here are all part of the high price being paid today for decades of importing human time bombs from the Arab world. That in turn has been the fruit of an unwillingness to filter out people according to the countries they come from.

followed by ...

There are thousands of Americans who might still be alive if we had banned immigration from Saudi Arabia -- and perhaps that might be more important than the rhetoric of the intelligentsia.

The offensiveness of such a suggestion is shocking. Banning an entire group from immigrating to the United States because of the actions of a select few is the sort of nonsense that should have disappeared with the Know-Nothing Party 150 years ago. Regardless of any real concerns about national security, such statements reflect a desire to keep people out of the United States.

If the only concern is national security, there are measures that can be taken besides outright immigration bans and quotas that exclude massive numbers of immigrants who end up immigrating illegally. For one thing, the government can do a better job of monitoring who they are letting into the country. Remember, all the 9-11 hijackers entered the country legally.

And beyond improved monitoring of legal immigrants, the number of illegal immigrants could be reduced by increasing the number of legal immigrants allowed into the country. To the lonely libertarian the solution is simple: Let more people into the country legally, and actually monitor the people you are letting into the country. Keep people out because they have terrorist connections, not because they're Saudi Arabia.

And, if like Sowell mentions, you're concerned about immigrants on welfare, maybe that should be a call to change welfare policy, not immigration policy.


Blogger Kerry said...

Those comments he made are bigoted. That's a blanket generalisation he has put forward there and it's quite disgraceful that in this day and age people can still be so closed-minded.

10:41 AM  

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