Saturday, April 22, 2006

One Mother of a Problem

Last night a friend asked my opinion on the immigration debate. I said something like this:

Yeah, the damn Mexicans are taking our jobs, but that's all just a distraction from real problem: all those people out there giving birth to babies! Thanks to all those parents, millions of babies enter the country every year, and when they've grown up most of them end up wanting jobs!

If the conversation had gone on, I might have mentioned that the babies who don't eventually take our jobs end up on welfare instead. And if I'd had the statistics on hand, I might have been more specific: over four million babies are born in the U.S. each year, as compared to about one million immigrants. Maybe the Minutemen should start blocking the maternity wards instead of the borders.

(Note: I don't claim to have originated this particular reductio. I think I saw the same point made on another blog a few years ago, before the immigration debate blew up. But I can no longer remember the source.)

7 comments:

Blar said...

That is so true, Glen. I'll probably get called a xenophobe just for stating the facts, but you know that most of those immigrants from the womb are lazy, dirty, and they don't even speak English. Have you ever seen the way that they live after they get here? Maybe it's just the culture of dependency that they come from that makes them wallow around demanding handout after handout (and with such insistence, as if it was their birthright!). This is "politically incorrect" to say, but I think that there also might be something genetic to it. I know that genes can be overcome, and some of these womb immigrants do change their ways, but it always seems to take them ten, fifteen, or twenty years or more to assimilate to our hard-working, self-reliant culture.

If anything, I think that libertarians like you should be most opposed to all these people entering the country. We have a strong strain of classical liberalism in our national character, but I don't know how we're going to maintain that tradition with four million people flooding into the country each year from places where those values don't mean a thing.

I say that we round 'em all up and send 'em back where they came from, seal off the entry points where they're sneaking in, make it a felony to help someone get into our country this way, and create a citizenship test so that we only let in those who speak English and understand our national history and values. Since I'm a reasonable guy, I'll add that, if we run into too many logistical problems (cost, etc.) I'm open to some modifications on this plan, but I think that what I've laid out is at least a good starting point and something to aspire to.

dgm said...

right now our two kids are handy little labor units that help keep our household running efficiently. someday, however, we will unleash them on the rest of america, where they will steal your jobs. bwah hah hah!

as to blar's idea, i, for one, have a no-return policy on all babies. you'll have to figure out somewhere else to send them.

John T. Kennedy said...

You might have see the argument here.

Glen Whitman said...

John: That could be where I saw it, but I don't read Anti-State.com with any frequency. I suspect I saw it somewhere else.

Blar: "If anything, I think that libertarians like you should be most opposed to all these people entering the country. We have a strong strain of classical liberalism in our national character, but I don't know how we're going to maintain that tradition with four million people flooding into the country each year from places where those values don't mean a thing."

I think you were being facetious, but that is actually the only anti-immigration argument that has much effect on me. As some wise person said, when you live in a democracy, the immigrants are not just your new neighbors, they're your new rulers. But I'm not convinced that immigrants as a group are substantially more anti-liberty than natives, and I think preventing them from joining fully in the capitalist economy is a darn good way of fomenting anti-liberty attitudes. Not to mention that enforcing a strict anti-immigration policy would itself have profoundly deleterious consequences for liberty.

Charles N. Steele said...

Glen -- your conclusion is all wrong. The Minutemen need to start handing out condoms to illegals as the enter; blocking maternity wards won't stop anything.

A better solution, of course, is simply for the U.S. to annex Mexico as the 51st state, abolish all the idiotic laws that prevent Mexico's economy from developing, and imprison all of Mexico's corrupt officials (i.e. all of them -- and what a great stimulus for our prison industry!)

Blar -- not to worry... we now have a Spanish version of Star Spangled Banner (see my blog) so these new citizens will be able to integrate quickly.

Ben said...

Charles, why give condoms only to illegals? I think Glen's idea qA meant to be applied to everyone.

Dan said...

This is an interesting point of view. You should see the site: www.saneworks.us.