Lee Yuan Tew, founder of modern Singapore, a small island nation state that went from an average annual income of $400 a year in 1959 to over $50,000 per year in 2012, offered some immigration advice to the United States. He admires the U.S. and credits much of our economic success to our unique culture:
“What can destroy America is multiculturalism.”
Mr. Yew doesn’t see anything wrong with appreciating other cultures as long as we do not surrender our own culture, which has produced a creativity and political and economic system, the marvel of the world. He asks, “Will waves of Latin American immigrants who choose not to assimilate into your culture cause America to become just another Latin American country?”
With an insistence on their own language, radio, TV and newspapers that isolates them from the advantages of assimilation into our culture, are we participating in our own destruction?
Are Latinos being isolated in order to control their votes and loyalty? When our schools emphasize diversity and multiculturalism, do the teachers and administrators know the source of entrepreneurial abilities and the vision that has so clearly identified America in our past? Which Latin American country do they want us to emulate? Do they understand why our Latino neighbors are emigrating, in the first place?
Interestingly enough, we don’t see Cuban immigrants wanting us to adopt the ways of Castro’s Cuba. They, unlike their neighbors know the difference. When millions of the impoverished and uneducated are not successfully assimilated, it poses a danger to all of us, including the newest immigrants.
Any effective immigration policy has to start with safe, enforceable borders and then, our legal immigration policy must be revamped to give preference to those who can contribute to the American system immediately. For illegal adults, a worker’s permit, but not citizenship and for those border babies, an earned pathway to citizenship that is not shorter than the normal time for legal immigrants.
A 20-year waiting period for this group with no eligibility for welfare services until citizenship has been earned, should just about do it.Those who decide to return to their native lands should be assisted.
Many border-crossing immigrants are not even Latinos but from all over the world, simply taking advantage of our “open doors” on the Mexican border. All residents who understand and accept the principles of liberty and free market economics should make great Americans, regardless of origin, race or ethnicity. Those who would have it otherwise probably have a different set of motives.