Skip to comments.The Hispanic Challenge (To America) A MUST READ Samuel Huntington (Long But Good)
Posted on 02/24/2004 10:40:36 AM PST by Cacique
click here to read article
It needs to be read as it is so releveant today. maybe you can ping yopur ping lists.
Please pardon any redundant pings, but I have a hunch that this should be required reading.
The Southwest is not different that way, at least not where I live. There are many Americans labeled as Hispanics that have assimilated, and are very good citizens. Many of them are descendents of Spanish colonists and early Indian tribes and they don't claim this land belongs to Mexico or Aztlan or any of that bogus stuff. They are proud Americans, many serve in the military and are great people. Many are also legal immigrants, that are proud Americans. Many of these people are close friends of mine, my own family could be best classified as mutts, ethnically speaking. My son-in-law and his family are assimilated "Hispanics", which by the way- I just see them as Americans.
There are also radical hispanic US citizens who act like someone owes them something for being here. Those citizens we have no control over, just as we have no control over any other citizen that doesn't seem to be proud of this country or seems to support another country over the US. I usually call them idiots no matter their ethnic background. I personally think anyone that doesn't feel proud to be a US citizen or feels more loyalty to another country should leave ASAP, but I have no way to make that happen or Hollywood would look like a ghost town.
Illegals are another issue entirely, at least to me, I firmly believe no one has the right to enter this country illegally. I have been angry for 30 years that our country chooses to look the other way. If we really needed workers, and I am not convinced on that- but if we really needed workers from another country we should have set up a legal way for that to happen years ago. Our government should have never looked the other way on illegal border crossers. period. The fact that they have has caused chaos on the border that is spreading all over America.
My main issue of concern is the border crisis. First of all we have no control over our border with Mexico (that is the only border I am familiar with enough to speak about) I think an out of control border is a security issue above all else. When people come into the US illegally we have no way of knowing anything about them. We don't know if they are terrorists, or criminals or seeking work or what their purpose is in this country. We don't have any idea who they are or where they came from. That is really scary to me- estimates are that there are between 11-25 million illegals in this country. That's a lot of people that we know nothing about. Scary. There is also a criminal network that operates on both sides of the border involved with human smuggling, drug smuggling and who knows what else they are smuggling. That's scary to me. Crimes of stolen vehicles, false documents and identity theft flourish due to the border chaos. Many other crimes flourish in the chaos.
I would like to see the border secured. period. I think the only way to do that is to build a major fence/barrier to slow the illegal border traffic to a level that LE could manage it. Then we should address the issue of illegals in this country . Crossing the border illegally is a crime and those who have committed that crime should not be rewarded.
thanx for the bump
I have the same problem- I hate labels. Mexicans to me are citizens of Mexico- I am not real sure what Hispanics are, but have been told they are people of Mexican or other Latin American countries. I have also been told Latinos are the radical hispanics. Who gets to decide this? If you ask me this hang up on what to call everyone is just more PC fallout.
If you label all the various groups and subgroups to me that is racist. Yet if you call someone by the wrong group or subgroup you are considered racist. Labels have always been around- but seems we are creating new ones every day, which just adds to the confusion and misunderstandings all around.
I didn't read the previous comments on the thread, just the article and the comments after your ping. Can you confirm that the author is a registered dem, but of the conservative persuasion? IIRC, that's what I read before, after I read the "Clash of Civilizations" article.
Thanks for posting this. Long sobering read and devastatingly factual. We are at the edge of the abyss.
you make a lot of sense.
the decision by the feds to allow people to come in illegally instead of legally was/is a terrible mistake.
Unfortunately, as a teacher, my experience is that the other large Hispanic groups are not following the same course. Dominicans still speak of going on vacation to "my country". Mexicans are not even bothering to make an attempt at assimilation.
I do think that the 'my country" business is the heart of the problem. When my grandparents came from Italy in 1908 they viewed Italy as the "old country" It was in the past. That's what most immigrants of that time felt. Today the proximity of Mexico, the existence of same day travel to anywhere in the world, and an international communication network that makes any home in most parts of the world only 15 digits away makes cutting the ties to the past., not only more difficult, but undesirable.
OK, I'll bite; what is VDARE?
Never mind; I Googled it up and found it very informative. Just the link to the explanation of the difference between Paleocons and Neocons was worth the trip.
I don't know why it would cause a banning, unless there is extreme stuff I didn't see.
bump and raise a bump!
Huntington's notion that America is an alchemical melting pot which transmogrifies immigrants into white protestants is trailer park sophistry. This country is a hod-podge of little Italys, and China towns along with white suburbs. Immigrants have changed the culture and have been changed by American culture. It has usually not been the immigrants who have acculturated, but their children who merged with American norms. We see this with the children of illegals today.
Illegal immigration has been happening since the founding of America. Mexicans have crossed our southern border without permission since we took CA and TX from them. To read Huntington one would come to the conclusion that there are no positive aspects to the influx of hispanic immigration. How can he offer solutions with out an understanding of the pressures and payoffs that have allowed illegal immigration to become preferable to legal immigration for politicians, government, employers, and voters?...and before you try to contradict that point, see if you can name a popular politician that has won on an anti-immigration platform in the last 50 years. You will be hard pressed to find a leader for your side that has won statewide office much less been considered a national figure.
The difference today is Government now has the ability to monitor all the US workers. Some people think that's a good idea. I don't. What has remained the same is the natural human distrust of people who are different, rather than trust in human culture that all of God's creations share. Love of God, family, and home. Nationalism comes later.
For me Huntington's article was more of what I've previously read and dismissed. His incomplete research is biased, and his conclusions are flawed.
"For me Huntington's article was more of what I've previously read and dismissed. His incomplete research is biased, and his conclusions are flawed."
Sez you. You'll have to forgive me for sticking with the redoubtable Huntington, and others like Toynbee, who understand how cultures are destroyed.
I'm glad the majority of American people seem to understand the inane simplism of this "we-are-a-nation-of-immigrants" argument. And that degree of clarity will only improve as this crisis escalates.
Well, it's hard to argue with that.
You'll have to forgive me for sticking with the redoubtable Huntington, and others like Toynbee, who understand how cultures are destroyed.
OK, you're forgiven. I prefer the optimism of Bush and Reagan, who understand cultures need people to thrive. Huntington looks at America as something precious, and in need of protection, that only Americans should enjoy. I see America as a beacon of hope. A shining city on the hill and God's gift to the world.
I'm glad the majority of American people seem to understand the inane simplism of this "we-are-a-nation-of-immigrants" argument. And that degree of clarity will only improve as this crisis escalates.
Thank you Nostradamus. Do you mean the crisis of illegals coming to America to do grunt work for grunt pay? That crisis that has been happening since 1776. We are a nation of immigrants. It's simple because it is true. For me the issue is American impotence and abortion are reducing our population. Immigration is necessary to ensure our continued growth. If you take out the illegal immigration our nation shrunk in population last year, and the year before. It would be difficult to grow the economy with fewer workers. I think it will be much harder to do with 12 million illegals deported. Suggesting it, in a time of baby boomer retirements and a War on Terror, seems positively suicidal, but perhaps I just have a simplistic world view.
If immigration was really an important issue it wouldn't have been ignored by every President and Congress for 40 years. It is getting played up by the news media because it splits the base which gets hooked every time. Conventional wisdom is the Congress won't even finalize a bill by elections. I think a compromise tough security/guest worker law could be passed. I'm optimistic about Nov regardless of what happens on the issue.
Here's my prediction : If immigration reform doesn't pass before the elections, no viable presidential candidate will emerge and lead the charge to deport the American born children of illegal janitors, auto mechanics, burger flippers, car washers, nannies, painters, and gardeners...even if it is such a popular view with "conservatives" who promise sit out elections or vote for parties that can't win. Yeah, The world does revolve around them. Maybe Buchanan and Foster can run again.
Thank you so much for taking the time to let me know that you like Huntington and not me. I'm happy you believe people are finally coming around to your way of thinking, and nice job backing up your opinion with nothing. It's a great debating technique that screams self-adoration. It sends the message that your views should be accepted because you say so.
Resurecting this post again so more people can read it.
I do fear for the future of the U.S. because of the continuing illegal immigration problems and because of the still porous land borders with both Mexico and Canada.
Excellent article. Thanks for the ping.
Whether one believes that we are in immediate danger from Mexican immigration or not, it would be a grave mistake not to acknowledge that there are those who do absolutely believe this. And if this issue is allowed to fester without being addressed, it will surely bring far less level heads out of the woodwork to deal with it.
Huntington cites Bosnia as something that "could happen", but says that it is doubtful that it "will happen here". Unlike him, I am not so sure of that -- both due to misperceptions about what really happened in Bosnia, and also due to an underestimation of the level of fear that can be generated in even ordinary Americans when they feel that their homes and their way of life are threatened. And it only takes a few defining incidents to shape the nightmare. Look at what 9/11 (loss of life, less than 3,000) did to the psyches of millions (perhaps even billions) of people. It can be shocking to see what ordinary people can do to one another, when they are collectively terrified. And at that point, even level heads become radicalized because there is no room for equivocating or dialogue once imagination starts running wild.
Cool name, Polybius. Cool quote on your web page.
Phoenix is mostly Mexican in its Hispanic population, no surprise there. Mexicans are wonderful people. In fact, most immigrants appreciate America more than native-born Americans do. I think most Caucasians appreciate all the cultures which have formed their own enclaves in various cities. Scottsdale is Jewish and Mafia in its makeup.
What grinds me is that the flood of illegal aliens has brought with it a massive amount of illegal drugs, thousands of criminals, and a completely broken medical system. My only hope for medical insurance is to join a large corporation. My last offer was $200 a month for $10k deductible, or, no insurance for $2,400 a year.
The flood shows no sign of abating. Neither party is interested in the welfare of American citizens. We are only a few years away from nationalized health care (or, even more than we have now). That will mean even more give-aways for people who do not belong here.
Another consequence of the illegal flood is making Spanish almost a requirement of employment. Why should I have to learn another language to get a job in my own company? I have nothing against people getting more because they want to learn another language, but this new development is tilting employment toward illegals once again. Yet many illegal aliens have not learned English after 8 - 10 years here. My dog knows more English words than the husband (illegal, here 8 years) knows. He works in the kitchen of a national chain. He's a fine person, very hard working and friendly. But something is definitely wrong when I am supposed to learn his language and he does not know mine.
I would love to see every single person with proper papers, but I am opposed to any kind of amnesty. Anyone who is here illegally should leave and apply to return under limited conditions.
Your family came to the US when Americans' primary view of Cubans was "Ricky Ricardo", (Desi Arnaz) married to America's then sweetheart, Lucille Ball.
The Cubans who came to the US back then, as Huntington pointed out, were bankers and business people -- the upper class -- who were treated as well if not better than most of the other immigrants who came before them -- and who very much deserved that image as they were hard working, smart business people who kept their culture privately while assimilating publicly into American life. Before the Mariel Boatlift, if a non-Cuban heard the word "Cuban" -- once they got past the subject of Fidel Castro -- "Cuban" conjured up much of the romantic visions of Cuba that Andy Garcia has often tried to recreate on film.
But that Mariel Boatlift in 1980 changed much of that -- and now the Diaz-Balarts, Andy Garcia and Gloria Estefan's are seen as more the exceptions rather than the rule. Too bad, because pre-Mariel Cubans should have been held up by politicans as "the model" for how Hispanic immigrants can and should be integrated into American society.
When it becomes universal rule, quite a few immigrants from non-Spanish countries might consider to go back. I know second generation Irish who are considering that.
Is that because they never really thought of themselves as "Americans" or because political and economic conditions where their ancestry came from have improved, while the political and economic conditions for them in the US have gotten worse? My guess is that it is the latter.
My husband and I both consider ourselves absolutely "American" (he is a Vietnam Vet), but we have also considered getting the hell out of the US when we retire -- not to the Balkans for obvious reasons, but if my ancestry came from a country where I spoke the language and felt at home in the culture, I could understand why someone would consider leaving the US for the home of their ancestors. If their families came here for political and economic reasons and then those reasons no longer exist, the lure of "the old country" is a very romantic idea that their parents likely planted in their heads, without necessarily even realizing that they did it.
HUMINT: How could anyone dictate anyone else's dream? They can't! If a person conceives of an Americano Dream, then it exists. An Americano Dream doesn't devalue Huntington's American Dream or my American Dream or your American Dream. I have to respectfully disagree with Huntington who I will now refer to as a "dream killer". Let's play a game called flip the context - Ask yourself; what does a Christmas tree have to do with Jesus Christ? Decorating the tree is a convergence of several cultures into something beautiful. The custom would've been impossible to imagine for a "dream killer" like Huntington. Analytically speaking Huntington's intuitive commentary is a self fulfilling prophecy. If you look at an American and arbitrarily disqualify him or her as a potential compatriot, besides being an asshole, you're probably arbitrary yourself. Ideas are not language dependent constructs. IMO The Declaration of Independence, U.S. Constitution, Bill of Rights, Emancipation Proclamation and every other important American document should be written in every language ever conceived by the mind of mankind, printed at tax payer expense and the books should find there way onto the shelves of every office, library and home in the world. That's a dream to behold! IMO The most quoted man in the World should be Thomas Jefferson! But that too is a dream worthy of execution by Huntington's sociopathic conclusion. His forth coming book, "Who Are We?" might be better titled, "Who We Were!" because Huntington certainly cannot figure out "Who We Will Be!". Irrespective of Huntington's problematic conclusion, the problem he points out is very real.
To my mind, the influx of legal and illegal immigrants is a serious problem only if integration into America's dynamic culture is impossible. History shows that it's possible for people to integrate from virtually anywhere to virtually anywhere. Therefore the problem he outlines is solvable. Right now, there are points of failure in the process of integration. That's the primary problem. At this moment, it is difficult for anyone to offer a solution without good data. Hopes and dreams are important data. In fact casually dismissing an immigrant's hopes and dreams will exacerbate integration woes. One should consider hopes and dreams to be essential to evaluating the capacity of an immigrant community to successfully integrate. If the current dreams are destructive, don't murder the ones that exist, offer better ones.
Probably something close to the latter:
People came here either for refuge or for improvement, largely for their children. Watching much of the US become mexicanized makes it clear that the improvement part is slipping away for non-mexican citizens. That the government does not seem to care that a huge number of the mexicans creating the changes are NOT citizens and are NOT here legally only adds more despair to both legal immigrants and native born Americans.
If you can see future improvement by returning to the auld sod and future decline by remaining here; getting out of Dodge is a reasonable choice.
PS: If any of the original "I know lots of very well assimilated mexicans", and "this is a bit alarmist" posters are reading this today:
C'mon out to lost angeles, hit the shops downtown, drive ten miles in any direction; a little reality might do you some good.
I am a native Californian and lived in LA for about ten years, moving back to Northern CA in the mid-1980's. When I've gone back to LA for visits, I have been pretty shocked at the changes.
When I was in college at UCLA, I worked at a bank on the corner of Pico & Alvarado. I took the job in that neighborhood only to have some credibility for my then Liberal politics in arguing with my more conservative immigrant father. It was an eye-opener for me when I was told to "go back to college gringa and get out of our neighborhood" and I was chewed out by some customers for my lousy skills in Spanish when many of those who couldn't speak English had been in the US for 20 plus years. This was completely unlike my own immmigrant father who had learned English as soon as he arrived in the US because he knew that he couldn't get a decent job or run a business without that skill. I finally quit that job when we were robbed twice and I was attacked in the parking lot, all within a six month period. That doesn't count the experience of watching a guy pee on our front door after the bank bounced his check, a dead guy under a bus stop who was ignored by his own people for hours until one of us in the bank called the police, or not even being able to walk down the street to get a lunch, alone.
Needless to say, that experience (along with a visit to then-communist Yugoslavia a few years later) made me make a sharp right hand turn, politically.
The bigest difference that I see between LA in the 1970's and today is that now that same attitude of the Pico & Alvarado area has spread across all of LA, when before it used to be confined to a few downtown and East LA neighborhoods that most non-Hispanics avoided.
Poor Huntington! Oh the horror! The Mexicans are coming! Many are actually Catholic (as are you, me, ninenot, sittnick, palestrinagal0317, and Taxchick)! Few Mexicans worship birth control, homosexuality and/or abortion (any more than do you or I or ninenot or sittnick or Taxchick)! Rum! Romanism! Rebellion!!! Lions and tigers and bears, oh my!!!!
A New York Times article a few days ago claimed that a full 39% of US Catholics are Mexican and/or Latin American right now. Given the respective birthrates among Latinos on the one hand and the rest of the Catholic population, Catholicism in the US will soon enough be majority Latino. If there is an absolutely revolutionary upsurge in traditionalism among Catholics (which would be evidenced by a dramatic birthrate increase), then that Latino majority might be postponed. Best of all would be the rise of traditionalism among ALL Catholics here in which case we US Catholics won't particularly care about our respective ancestries.
All: I wish each of you (and everyone else who is a Christian on Free Republic and in life) a happy and holy Christmas season and all the best in the coming year.