Mi Casa

From an article in The Economist about the eclipsing of white America:

Two factors make the rise of Hispanic America different. Never before has such a large group of new arrivals lived so close to their ancestral homelands, linked to grandparents in the same time zone by cheap flights and Skype. Secondly, America is entering an era of white decline. For almost two centuries, from the time of George Washington’s presidency to the election of Ronald Reagan, whites of European descent made up at least 80% of the population. That share is below two-thirds now, and the white majority is set to become a minority by 2044. That brings both challenges and opportunities. Today’s Hispanics lag behind whites when it comes to education and wealth. But they are strikingly young, lowering America’s median age and offering workers to fill the labour market when other rich countries face greying decline. Politicians too often discuss Hispanics as almost a single-issue group, as victims or villains of immigration. But five-sixths are legal residents and recent Latino growth has been mostly from births, not new arrivals. Hispanics are dispersing across the country and their political clout will only grow: nearly 1m US-born Latinos reach voting age annually.

Regarding ways in which mass immigration from Mexico differs qualitatively from immigration from elsewhere (e.g., contiguity of home country; dual loyalties; etc.), Samuel Huntington’s “The Hispanic Challenge” remains seminal, as does his expanded study book Who Are We? The Challenges to America’s National Identity, both being works where Huntington expands upon the variables which make the scale and scope of Mexican immigration to the U.S. qualitatively different than any other ethnic group subsequent to the nation’s founding:

  • Contiguity of immigrant’s homeland to America
  • Scale of immigration from one particular country
  • Family reunification as the basis of U.S. immigration policy
  • Illegality of immigrant population
  • Regional concentration (Balkanization)
  • Non-white racialism and nationalism as a form of group interest

To this, I would add:

  • Diaspora-laden demographics (and foreign governments) would rationally seek to influence U.S. immigration policy to benefit said countries/groups.
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