Citizens, Not Americans

I’ve been pro-Trump from the beginning, a supporter who thinks his rhetoric essential to facing down the unending opposition from the media and the political establishment. He may lose; I don’t make predictions. I’m unflustered by the establishment hysteria and even now, in the face of all the unrelenting Trump condemnation, see little to fuss about.

Trump did make me flinch once, when he said that Judge Curiel was Spanish, or Mexican—fundamentally Not American.


At a recent department meeting, Benny said: “Look, Honors Algebra 2/Trig has…what, five Americans? Honors Precalc has just four and then Walter and Victor.”

Wing nodded. “Most of the Americans take regular Calculus, and a few Hispanic kids.”

I sighed. “Yo, China boys, do you think you could remember that ‘American’ doesn’t mean ‘white’?”

Benny’s ABC…that’s a weird thing, isn’t it? American Born Chinese. Not Chinese American. Wing’s just plain old Chinese, with either a green card or citizenship, I’m not sure which. Walter is black. Victor is Hispanic. Both are American.

Immigration romantics usually live in all white enclaves, because white regions don’t have any immigrants.

Immigrants can be whites, of course, and don’t kid yourself into thinking their skin color makes them more popular. Those of us in high immigration areas rank Russians and Eastern Europeans well below Asians as desirable neighbors and I, at least, would pick Hispanics in a heartbeat over anyone from east of Berlin who showed up after the Wall came down. The corruption levels are freakishly high, and they’re often nasty neighbors. Irish immigrants are more popular–cute accents! plus, Western culture.

White immigrants don’t cluster in white American enclaves, though, but in already diverse urban areas: New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Boston.

It’s much easier to get all misty-eyed about the immigrant dream if you aren’t experienced enough to categorize them by ethnicity.

Paul Ryan represents a district that’s 91% white, ahead of the state’s 86% white average. Mitch McConnell’s Kentucky is likewise 86% white. Both Wisconsin and Kentucky’s second largest population is African Americans, coming in at around 6%. Naturally, these white men living in white enclaves feel entitled to judge those who don’t live in genteel segregation for questioning the onslaught of diversity imposed on them by all three branches of federal government.

In addition to summer school, I’m teaching test prep all day Saturday, with populations very like the enrichment classes I taught until last year: 99% 1st or 2nd generation Asian.

“I need a Saturday off over the 4th of July. Is there anyone here who absolutely can’t meet on a Sunday to make up that session?” The kids all seemed fine with it.

“Besides, look at the bright side–you’ll get the whole fourth of July weekend off!”

Yun snorted. “I’m not American. It’s not my holiday.”

I stopped cold. Just looked at him. And waited.

“It’s not me, it’s my parents. They weren’t born here; they don’t care about that.”

“Were you born here?”


I looked at the class.

“How many of you were born here?”

Most of the hands went up.

“How many of you know what the Fourth of July is, much less celebrate it?”

All of the hands went down.

“Yeah. You all SUCK. Do it different this year.”

They all looked abashed.

So yeah, I twitched a bit when Trump declared that the judge was Spanish. I would have preferred that Trump simply question the judge’s objectivity, as Byron York outlined.

Is he American? I’d say yes. He was born here. But I know countless children of immigrants who laugh at the idea they might be American just because they were born here. Just one more way in which misty-eyed white people in all-white enclaves are allowed delusions that the rest of us–white or just American–are forced to abandon.

It’s always “he’s born here” or “is a US citizen?”

Jake Tapper, to Trump, “He was born in Indiana.”

Rarely “He’s American”.


Last fall, Abdul said “Can you believe Trump wants to kick out all Muslims?”

“Pretty sure he wants to ban Muslim immigration.”

“Same thing.”

“Well, no. Even assuming the ban happened, it wouldn’t be for citizens and you’re a citizen, right?”

Abdul spat. “I’m not a citizen of this country. Not if they nominate Trump.”

“Oh, that’s such crap.”

“I’m Palestinian. I can go there after I get my degree.”

“Yeah, because Palestine is just a paradise of tolerance and religious freedom.”

Abdul was shocked at my, er, lack of support for his pain. “You think I should just accept people here hating Muslims and electing Trump?”

“Jesus, Abdul. You want to oppose Trump? Start a voter registration drive. Put a sign in your yard. Go door to door. But oppose him as an American.”

“But why would I want to be an American if Republicans hate Muslims? “

“Republicans don’t hate Muslims. Trump doesn’t even hate Muslims. And America didn’t demand you lived up to any expectations, didn’t make any demands of you to give you citizenship.”

“Wow, go ED!” shouted Al, who demands we pledge every day even if there’s no announcements because “otherwise the Commies win!” “And go TRUMP!”

“Shush. Look, Abdul, you should oppose Trump. You’ll have plenty of company. But you are a shining example of what Islam can mean in America–you work hard, you challenge yourself, you’ve achieved tremendously. But you reject the country that gave your parents a home–well, no, not rejecting it, but making it conditional.”

“It’s conditional on people accepting my religion!”

“They do, but never mind that. If you reject the country of your birth in favor of Islam, you who have done so much and so well, isn’t it logical for Americans–actual Americans, those who don’t set conditions on their country–to wonder if Muslims are right for this country? Shouldn’t we wonder if they’ll be loyal, if they’ll appreciate what the country has to offer? If you make your acceptance conditional, how can you blame the America you want to reject for doing the same?”

Abdul mulled, shifting his shoulders back and forth. “That’s a bunch of good points.”

“Well, we shouldn’t be talking about politics in class. Back to trig.”


Joe Scarborough has been carrying buckets from the “Muslims are productive citizens” well on a regular basis ever since he took Ted Cruz to task last March. But if Joe actually met a Muslim immigrant now and again–which he’s unlikely to do in New Canaan, population 95% white–he’d realize the reality doesn’t quite live up to the ideal. Abdul’s one of many Muslims I know who doesn’t think of himself as American, and Abdul’s a minor glitch compared to the reality of intense Muslim immigration. Just look at Hamtramck filled with recent Muslim immigrants.

Look close at Hamtramck, Joe. That’s not Muslims choosing to be Americans first. That’s Muslims imposing religious tyranny through numbers, not granting Americans what they demand for themselves. And they’ve created a place that no American, a word I use advisedly, would willingly choose to live.

I spent a year recently in a town over half Asian, the vast majority recent immigrants, and whole pockets of the area are….unappealing, because of mores and cultures that simply aren’t anything Westerners find acceptable. Nothing you’d find compelling or convincing, unless you had to live with it. I moved, for reasons not involving my discomfort, to a town that’s 60-40 white/Hispanic, and am much happier. Victor Davis Hanson warns of what happens when illegal, high poverty Hispanics hit critical mass, and that’s not pretty either. I’ve heard similar tales of Armenians and Russian enclaves.

Heavy immigration of any ethnicity and de facto, willing segregation by ethnicity does not lead to immigrants thinking of themselves as Americans, but rather immigrants imposing their ethos (or lack of same, as we see it) on America.


Dwayne, the closest thing you find to a good ol’ country boy in this area, gave me a note:

I just want to tell you I’m sorry I’m such a jerk who talks too much. I’m just really stupid at math and I hate school. Please give me a C. I’ll paint your car any time you want. Free. And you’re a really cool teacher. Go Trump!

Dwayne and his buddy Paul live and breathe cars. Dwayne likes body work, Paul does engines, and both are highly regarded by the mechanics at our vocational training program.

A couple months ago I asked my mechanic if he was interested in training high school graduates with experience. Hell yes, came the answer, we always need mechanics. I gave Dwayne and Paul the address, they dressed in nice shirts and (on my advice) made single page resumes for their visit. They returned impressed but nervous (“There were FIVE PORSCHES in the garage!! There’s no way he’d want us!”) but said it went well.

My mechanic concurred. “Good kids. You know what’s really nice, although I didn’t say this: they’re white kids. These days, the only young men showing interest in mechanics are Hispanics. That’s fine, don’t get me wrong, but can it be that no white kids want to be mechanics? When did that happen?.”

“Maybe when they needed Spanish to speak to their co-workers?” I suggested. He laughed, but not in a happy way.


caldwellcalaisChristopher Caldwell, The Migrants of Calais

Leave it at that.

Last February, third block algebra 2: “Hey, Ed, I heard you’re a Republican. You voting Trump?”

Chuy broke in, “Yeah! Go Trump!” and beamed at me approvingly.

Daniel was shocked. (Truth be told, I almost fell out of my chair.) “What? How can you like Trump? He wants to deport Mexicans.”

“So what? I ain’t Mexican.”

“Well, neither am I, but…”

“Then what do you care? They can go back home. Trump’s strong. This country needs someone strong and tough. I like him.”

“I ain’t Mexican.”

The Chuys in my world are rare. Maybe it’s just 40s movie mythology that I’m thinking of, that there was ever a time when immigrants felt American in their souls, in their hearts, and were overjoyed when they finally became citizens. If such a time ever existed, it’s gone. Today, citizenship is taken for granted but it’s just a technicality, a legal state that gets you low tuition, benefits, shorter lines at the airports. Being American, holding your country in your heart, doesn’t seem to be part of the equation any more.

Why is Chuy so ready to stand for America as his country? I don’t know what made this second generation citizen “American”. So many others treat their citizenship as a business proposition, like the American-born Chinese and Koreans returning to their parents’ homelands, where they are welcome “home” as part of a diaspora, regardless of the trivia involving birthplace. Others, like Abdul, treat their citizenship as a choice: which will be best for my culture?

We must learn how to demand that immigrants think of America not just in economic terms. We must inculcate the understanding that their children aren’t just citizens of convenience, but Americans. Until then, Hillary Clinton is wrong in claiming that neither Trump’s wall nor a Muslim ban would have prevented the Orlando massacre, San Bernardino, Fort Hood, the Boston bombings.

We imported Nidal Hasan, the Tsarnaev brothers, Syed Farook, and Omar Mateen. Not directly, no. We imported their parents, who came here utterly indifferent to the American way. They passed their culture to the next generation intact, creating citizens, but not Americans. Their children, raised as cultural Muslims, found the totalitarian branch of radical Islam appealing.

But radical Islam is just our current threat, the present exposure. Our lax immigration policies, our own indifference to creating Americans, our unthinking donation of citizenship, create the conditions for any immigrant population to turn against the country.

America should not assume that its citizens are Americans. Each year millions of children are raised to see themselves as citizens of convenience. I see the results. Individually, I couldn’t point to any attribute, any character flaw that is companion to this mindset. But I wouldn’t consider it the sign of a healthy cultural polity.


Chuy’s open embrace of the GOP candidate withstood the outrage of his girlfriend, a citizen who thinks of herself as Mexican. Employed boyfriends aren’t low hanging fruit, and Chuy still has both his political preference and the girlfriend. Last day of school, Chuy stuck his head in and said “Yo, I hope I have you for Trig. Trump!”

Abdul stopped by all year, asking for advice or just to chat. And so once, in mid-May:

“Man, Trump’s killing it. You happy?”

“Yeah. You American?”

He laughed. “I think about what you said. I really do.”

That’ll have to count as a win. For now.

As for my test prep class, I’m assigning 1776 for homework over the 4th.

1Note: most of these stories happened verbatim, in a couple cases I collapsed or combined events. Nothing that changed import.


About educationrealist

61 responses to “Citizens, Not Americans

  • Jim

    Back when Yugoslavia existed the official line was that there were no longer Serbs, Croats, Slovenes, Bosnians, Albanians, etc. Now everybody was a Yugoslav. That was official truth. But official truth is not necessarily reality.

  • Jim

    Actually how could Albanians ever have been “Yugoslavs” ie “South Slavs” when Albanian isn’t even a Slavic language? Of ourse what reality really is doesn’t matter when it comes to “offical truth”.

  • Jim

    In Yugoslavia an Albanian was suppossed to think he was a non-existent type of Slav – a “Yugoslav”. Of course he knew he wasn’t any such thing. Your Chinese and Palestinian students are suppossed to think that they are “American”. Of course they know they’re not.

  • Hattie

    Let’s say the hypothetical happens (it won’t, but work with me) and the “Americans” boot them out. (It’s physically possible; the Islamic world kicked out its Jews and Saudi Arabia still bans them from entering the country.) How would they possibly object? What possible rhetoric could they use after generations of loudly declaring they’re not Americans?

  • Citizen of a Silly Country

    Funny. My family has been in the U.S. for well over a century, and I grew up a typical Midwest, patriotic American. However, the United States has changed so much demographically and culturally over the past 20 years or so that I no longer feel American.

    Why would I pledge allegiance to a country that despises me and does everything that it can to undermine the value of being a citizen?

    No, it’s not just immigrants and their children that are rejecting the label of American; it’s also the historic stock of this country (or, should I say, political entity).

    History hasn’t been kind to countries that become multi-racial, multi-ethnic, multi-religious or multi-cultural. Even just one of those attributes generally leads to bloodshed. Combine them, and you’re just asking for trouble.

    I’d be shocked if the country devolved into violent conflicts among the various groups, but a continuing and more acknowledged splintering of the country into rival factions wouldn’t surprise me. It’s already happening, except that whites haven’t started playing the game yet and the media ignores what’s going on. Once whites realize that they’re playing the chump and start looking at themselves the way Hispanics, blacks and Asians already do, the pretense that being an “American” means anything will finally die.

    Maybe a dramatic slowdown in immigration could save the country, but that’s simply not going to happen, even if Trump won.

  • MathCompSciTeach

    I don’t know where to begin, and I know I am not really writing this for you to read, because I know you are afraid and fear has an amazing way to close one’s thinking. You are not going to change your mind. This is more because I will be really pissed off at myself if I write nothing. But…
    What planet are you on? What you describe is not even close to my experience.

    First off, I am a typical white male. My ancestors came over in the early 1600’s. They fought in the revolutionary war and the Civil War (both sides). My parents had a high school education. So don’t give me this whole “you don’t understand the white blue collar struggle” (whatever that is).

    My nuclear family is another story. It is made up of my wife (2nd generation from Hungary) and my two sons (first generation adopted from the South Korea).

    My school is also very different. I teach in a school where children can speak (in addition to English) 23 different languages. Students have names like Harveen, Aarthi, Soubhaan, Jisoo, YuYing and Mustafa.

    They work as hard or harder than any of my other students whose parents immigrated several generations ago.

    They integrate amazingly well. We have a step dance team,
    Bollywood dance team and a traditional dance team. There are african american, indian, asian and white students on every team. My son has a group of friends that went to the prom. They were made up of an African American (family ancestry from over 200 years ago), Ruwandan (Mom survived the massacre), 2nd generation Filipino, Mexican, Pakistani, Vietnamese, Chinese and two 4th generation Caucasians. They all are best friends and had a great time. All of the students that I have met consider themselves American and fully appreciate the opportunity, because their parents tell them how lucky they have it hear. One of my Indian students told me last week how lucky she had it here in the US and how hard she should work because she had so much opportunity and he did not. When he was ten he had to work in a factory in India putting matchsticks in matchbox cartons (there there is a job for that in India)

    They feel the racism. Even though my sons have grown up in what you would call a “traditional American household”, they look Asian. They have been called “Ching Chong”, told that they can’t pronounce French because they were “foreign born” (they were adopted at 6 months old), and they don’t like going down south because they notice the stares they get. No scarring, but these are “real Americans” try to make it clear that they think my sons somehow are not American.

    Unfortunately, Trump draws out the this ugly side out in all of us. He encourages everything to be about us and them. What happens when it is about us and them? Violence. What happens when he comes into town? Violence. As my wife says, “A vote for Trump is a vote for a more dangerous place for my sons.” No thanks

    • Winston

      You are clearly not a “typical white male”. It is not typical to adopt children from a foreign country of a different race. It is clear you already had a far left world view that you are trying to make reality fit into. I’m sure you ended up teaching in such a school completely by accident?

      America has had the benefit of having a racial majority that can ignore their race and embrace multiculturalism since they are still the majority. They can overlook that every other group allies themselves by race. Unfortunately, as whites lose their majority status, the situation will change. Everything will be based on race, and that’s where the real threat of violence comes from.

    • jane

      Congrats on the copious virtual signaling! Yes, you can now pat yourself on the back for being such a good, virtuous, multicultural, non-racist, non-hater…except when it comes to Trump and his supporters. Those people, you hate, hate, HATE with a passion!

      “He encourages everything to be about us and them.” No, hon, that’s what “progressives” like you do – make everything about “us” (the virtuous progressives) vs. them (the troglodyte Trumpers). This is why YOUR side is constantly resorting to violence and attacking peaceful Trump supporters at rallies. YOU are the haters, the dividers, the “us vs. them” anti-Americans.

    • Roger Sweeny

      Your paragraph beginning, “They integrate amazingly well” made me proud to be an American. It’s how I was brought up and what I want for my country.

      However, the next two paragraphs bothered me. There are always people who do stupid things: whites who look at you funny because you look Asian, blacks who think you’re out to get them because you’re white, the possibilities are almost endless. But you have to avoid making unrealistic generalizations about whole groups of people. And you have to avoid automatically thinking the worst. If you think, lots of southerners are racists, you’re going to notice the times when there are stares but not notice all the times there aren’t. You will get a cold, scary, unrealistic view of the place and the people.

      My daughter identifies as queer. When she went off to college, I told her that she would encounter a lot of people who feel that they show how much they love justice by how much they hate people who disagree with them. I hoped she wouldn’t join in that behavior. The last 2 paragraphs sound like you’re doing that.

      It sounds like you are dividing into us and them, the good us (we hate Trump) and the bad them. Is Trump really going to make America “a more dangerous place for my sons”? Much of his campaign revolves around the idea that he cares more about America and Americans than he does about foreigners. Thus, for example, the defense of LGBT people in Orlando against anti-gay foreigners (and unassimilated immigrants). Your kids are Americans. The logic of his campaign is that they are part of the family. It sounds like you are thinking, “what he really means is that only white people are real Americans and he only cares about white people.” But that is certainly not what he is saying.

      And it really seems unfair to blame Trump for the violence at his rallies. The violence has come from ANTI-Trump people.

    • spindlitis

      Violence caused by “liberal” agitators. The people going to the Trump rallies bring their families. They don’t hide their faces.They sometimes try to talk to the protestors. Tell me, what kind of person brings eggs to a rally, if they aren’t there to cause trouble?

    • researchermo

      For an educator, you don’t seem able to proof read. It’s “here” not “hear” in reference to being lucky, and you only need “there” once in the last sentence of paragraph six. Normally I despise the grammar police, but you claim to be a teacher and there is no possible way that a good educator mixes up “here” and “hear” as a typo. The second case was likely an accident, but then that’s why one proof reads before hitting submit.

  • Roger Sweeny

    Wow. Just wow.

  • zanon

    btw — your victor david hansen link doesn’t work.

  • Retired

    Brutal but True. When I lived in upscale Silicon Valley my Russian next door neighbor was arrested for showing up with a trunk full of guns to kill his cheating wife.
    Moved to the sticks. Mexicans do not assimilate here either.
    Don’t know if I can vote Trump, but certainly I can’t vote for Clinton.

  • 57dimensions

    I mean, I am a white american, I was born here, my parents were born here, their parents were born here, and their parents came over from Ireland. I’ve never felt strongly “American” at all. I don’t think I would ever really use that as a descriptor of myself. I’ve never felt patriotic in my life either. American exceptionalism just isn’t in anymore, not among 1st generation americans or among all the nth generation white bread americans that I know.

    I went to middle school with a muslim girl, she was born here, her parents immigrated from Bangladesh. While I live in a wealthy white and asian suburb, she lived in a nearby city with a large immigrant population, containing many Asians, Hispanics, and Africans. She fit in easily with the other girls at the private school we attended. I don’t know if she would call herself American, but there is no doubt she and her family were completely at ease being immersed in American culture.

    • educationrealist

      I’m tempted to think you’re trolling. I mean, rich, white, went to a private school, just doesn’t feel American.

      • DensityDuck

        He’s never had occasion to feel any other way, I expect. The closest he’s come to wondering what it might be like to *not* be American was experiencing someone ethnic, and even then he could ascribe his uneasy frisson to latent racism.

  • phillipmarlowe2terry

    Trump did make me flinch once, when he said that Judge Curiel was Spanish, or Mexican—fundamentally Not American.
    So, why did Trump say that? (no need to answer that)

    BTW, has Trump discussed the H1B visa issue recently with the passion he gives Judge Curiel?

  • Calvin Hobbes

    Wow, just wow (in a good way)!

    It seems to me that America has a mental disorder analogous to anorexia nervosa.

    My guess as to what’s typically going on with anorexia is that characteristics that are good when properly channeled and in moderation become extreme and destructive. It’s good not to be fat and it’s good to have control over one’s appetites, but anorexics have internalized “fat is bad” and “watch what you eat” to a level that leads to starvation. And even though a lot of anorexics are intelligent (I think), these compulsions are so strong that they can’t be talked out of them, even when it’s obvious that they’re killing themselves.

    I think it’s good if the people in a country are a little bit self-critical about their country and are tolerant of other views and practices. But America has become so enamored of self-criticism and the virtues of “diversity” that we’re hell-bent on destroying the foundations of our good fortune. The craziness of our immigration policy is just as obvious as the craziness of an anorexic starving herself to death, but our betters find it virtuous to stay crazy. Maybe when America has become a dysfunctional third-world hell hole they’ll ask themselves, “WTF were we thinking???”, but by that time it will be too late.

  • dsgntd_plyr

    the judge curiel thing didn’t make me flinch. trump was quoting the media.

    MSM/DNC/GOPe: “hispanics, especially mexicans, hate donald trump”

    donald trump: “maybe this mexican judge hates me?”


    the media rarely said “hispanic-americans,” they usually would say “hispanic,” or “mexican.”

  • Immigrant from former USSR

    Duplicate of my comment on , related to assimilation of my family to this great country, USA.

    When our daughter was in High School [here, in the USA], I told her repeatedly:
    — If I will die before you finish your education,
    you must take Linear Algebra course,
    and then you may do whatever you want with your life.

    She took it twice, both times successfully (A), and now I feel free to die.

    Shakespeare, Sonnet 66, end:

    Tired with all these, from these would I be gone,
    Save that, to die, I leave my love alone.

    To be candid, I first learned Sonnet 66 in translation by remarkable Russian poet S. Marshak. Translation of those two lines:

    Все мерзостно, что вижу я вокруг…
    Но как тебя покинуть, милый друг?!
    Перевод С. Маршака.

    My greatest respect of Educationrealist,

  • Outside in - Involvements with reality » Blog Archive » Chaos Patch (119)

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  • sdfdsbfsfdgbs

    The huge numbers make it hard to assimilate for Mexicans here in L.A. But I have also ecountered lots of true blue american mexicans-usually in baseball. I don’t think its a coincidence that assimilating latinos gravitate to baseball. Soccer was another story altogether. Those parents might have been citizens, but not americans. We can make the assimilation work well if we just stop immigration now.

    • anonymousskimmer

      Is it huge numbers or the lack of diversity in jobs that they are ‘qualified’ for? If immigrants from Mexico found it easier to get a diversity of jobs, perhaps they would start melting into the pot at greater frequency (via US internal dispersion)?

      At what points is multiculturalism good and bad? Is a Highland Games (and equivalents for other cultures) on net a good or bad?

      I’m tempted to forswear my British, Scandinavian, Irish, Swiss-German and Bohemian ancestries in favor of declaring myself American. But on the other hand I enjoy discussions about ancestries.

  • unadorned

    Doesn’t it take more than being born in America to be an American?
    If my American mother was in China when I was born would I be Chinese?

    • educationrealist

      The answer to both questions is no.

    • Sheila

      Of course it takes more than being “born” here to be an American – being born here merely gives one legal citizenship (fallaciously determined based on a poorly worded amendment, of course). Otherwise, there’s no such thing as magic dirt or magic papers. As Horace noted, “Caelum non animum qui trans mare currunt” (Those who cross the sea change their skies not their souls).

    • Diaspora lives matter

      Blood before land. To be American you need some ancestral tie to the American nation, like if your ancestors fought in civil war, or are natives. Even if you weren’t born in USA, but you have that tie, you are American. But if you are born in China it doesn’t make you Chinese. Nationality is by ethnic and culture together. Being born and raised in USA doesn’t exactly make you american either, because there are isolated peoples who grew up with a non-american culture from their parents. Its about the experience and your parents strength at inheritance.

  • pithom

    “That’s Muslims imposing religious tyranny through numbers, not granting Americans what they demand for themselves.”

    -I’m not seeing it. Belgium is not the U.S. Hamtramck is not Molenbeek. Muslims in America are, so far, far too disorganized to impose any kind of tyranny on anyone, though they are more than organized enough to import 100+ of their relatives. There must be hundreds of thousands of immigrants from the Middle East who have chain-migrated here in recent years. The general picture of Muslim immigration to the U.S. becomes clearer the more you interact with Muslim immigrants.

    “And they’ve created a place that no American, a word I use advisedly, would willingly choose to live.”

    -Hamtramck was unlivable long before substantial Muslim immigration to there. The Bengali presence is just a sign of what it’s become.

    “Russian enclaves”

    -Never heard of them. There are Russian-speaking enclaves, sure, but they are almost all Ukrainian and Jewish.

    Overall, Muslim migration to the U.S. has been of superior quality in most aspects to the native Black stock. The obvious problem, though, is that there’s too much of it.

    “Those of us in high immigration areas rank Russians and Eastern Europeans well below Asians as desirable neighbors and I, at least, would pick Hispanics in a heartbeat over anyone from east of Berlin who showed up after the Wall came down.”

    -Hey, I fall under that description! Quality varies. Average Eastern European IQ is 5-10 points higher than Mexican. Soviet Jews, BTW, overwhelmingly favor Trump. Not sure what kind of E. Europeans you’re getting, though, of course, a description of Russians in general as Blacks with 10 points higher IQ and a more dour personality is not far from the truth!

    “It’s much easier to get all misty-eyed about the immigrant dream if you aren’t experienced enough to categorize them by ethnicity.”

    -Maybe. Maybe not. Eastern Kentucky’s not exactly full of immigrants, nor is it big on wanting them.

    “America should not assume that its citizens are Americans.”

    -Fully agreed.

    • educationrealist

      I didn’t say Russians were stupid. Just far too likely to be corrupt and criminal.

      “Maybe not. Eastern Kentucky’s not exactly full of immigrants, nor is it big on wanting them.”

      You do realize the difference between “easier” and “necessary”? Eastern Kentucky folk don’t have any reason to status signal by aping tolerance.

      If only “never heard of them” meant they didn’t exist.

      Your entire paragraph on Muslims apparently presumes that the only way they can take over is at the country level, and since I’m specifically saying otherwise, I’m not sure what your point is. And while I’m sure you personally think a place is unlivable, you’re also the type of person who would argue that Muslim enforcement of sharia is just a life style choice, so there’s not much point in carrying the discussion further.

      • pithom

        I’m not seeing any evidence of Muslim theocracy at the local level, either.

        “you’re also the type of person who would argue that Muslim enforcement of sharia is just a life style choice”

        -Uh, no. And what “Sharia” would Muslims at the local level enforce? Muslims in the U.S. come from highly discordant backgrounds; theocracy of any kind under such circumstances is unlikely to the extreme.

      • educationrealist

        “I’m not seeing any evidence of Muslim theocracy at the local level, either.”

        They broadcast the call to prayer 5 times a day. You can’t get a liquor license if you’re too near a mosque. And most of the women are completely veiled. But no, no evidence of Muslim theocracy.

        The communities are practicing sharia. Count on it. They’re just not enforcing it on Americans–but then, Americans will leave those places soon enough.

      • educationrealist

        Yeah, done. You’re bizarre.

  • Ganderson

    One hundred-some years ago when my Swedish grandparents came to the US they came to a growing, confident nation- a nation that was secure enough in its own identity to say “If you don’t like it here, go home!” Many, including some of my relatives did. There was no welfare, no ESL (or whatever it’s called in your district) and the expectation was that you become American. As I understand, you had to assure the powers that be that you would not become a public charge.
    Most immigration supporters argue from emotion. We all know immigrants that we like- even some, as Ed mentions, who don’t consider themselves to be Americans. That’s not an argument. When I get into an immigration “discussion” in the latte town where I live I always say something like “Ok- you can’t use the word ‘restaurant’ in this discussion. Personally the only semi pernanent visas I’d issue would be for hockey players. Of course THAT’S not en emotional argument….

    I also ask the question, where on the globe does Islam plays well with others? Crickets.

    • anonymousskimmer

      “Most immigration supporters argue from emotion.”

      Ultimately all argument is fueled by emotion (emotion is even necessary to move down a logical chain). Anyone who believes otherwise is deluding themselves. Emotions provide the value predicates, even those as simple as “I want to win this argument”. I’m curious whether AI will be any better.

      I understand what you’re saying, but I can just as equally say “Most open (to be fair) immigration opponents argue from emotion”.

      Honor killings need to be stopped. People need to know that they can look to our law as a refuge from parochial enforcement of sharia. MormonsMuslims don’t yet need to be kicked out or otherwise limited.

      “As I understand, you had to assure the powers that be that you would not become a public charge.”

      For a brief window of time, yes. Prior to that people were coming over as indentured servants and slaves (what a lower-class parallel to the H1B and L1 visas). Prior to that as conquistadors. Prior to that on viking ships. Prior to that across an arctic land bridge chasing mammoths and being chased by lions.

      “where on the globe does Islam plays well with others?” The same can be said of many modern Christian nations, which is a reason I am glad that I am not a citizen of one.

    • Roger Sweeny

      Of course, “Islam” does not play with others. It is people who claim to be followers of Islam who play with other people. And in many places, they play pretty well: Indonesia, Bangladesh, Albania, Bosnia.

      Actually, I should say in those countries MOST of them play well. There are a significant number of people who don’t, and who do bad, bad things.

      Alas, at this point in history, belief in some form of Islam does seem to raise the probability that the believer will do bad things in the name of Islam.

      In the developed countries, you really can’t say that about Christianities. annonymousskimmer, what were you thinking of?

      • anonymousskimmer

        I was thinking of the lesser developed Christian nations (mostly Africa).

        You have to go back about a century for the developed Christian nations to have been truly horrible (the Belgian empire was particularly atrocious).

        I think you meant …”do bad things in the name of religion.” in your second to last paragraph.

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