Foreign Affairs

Global Poll Uncovers Psychic Shift on Immigration

A new global poll by Ipsos measuring citizens’ perception of immigration in 24 countries has just been released.  Despite what politicians around the world would have their countrymen believe, the average person isn’t buying the benefits of current immigration policy.

The poll proves that our collective gut is indeed in line with reality: 80% of world citizens, from Russia and Brazil to America and India, feel that immigration has increased over the past five years, with 52% feeling it’s too much.  Of respondents, 45% believe this immigration has a negative impact.  This is legal, above-board immigration with which people are taking issue.
While politicians in America typically focus on the 12 million or so illegal immigrants, they often ignore that the country is taking in new legal immigrants at a rate of over a million every year.

America may have been built on immigration, but it wasn’t the kind of mass Third World immigration that we’ve been seeing over the past 40 years.  The Left originally introduced the concept of Third World multiculturalism to America during the Lyndon Johnson presidency through the Democratic Party’s Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965.  It was born of white guilt overkill in the shade of the Civil Rights Movement. 

At the time, Democratic Sen. Ted Kennedy said:  “Contrary to the charges in some quarters, [the bill] will not inundate America with immigrants from any one country or area, or the most populated and deprived nations of Africa and Asia.  … In the final analysis, the ethnic pattern of immigration under the proposed measure is not expected to change as sharply as the critics seem to think.  … The bill will not flood our cities with immigrants.  It will not upset the ethnic mix of our society.  It will not relax the standards of admission.  It will not cause American workers to lose their jobs.” 

In the true final analysis, the new law opened the flood gates to exponentially more Third World immigrants than originally planned—and did it on the basis of “family reunification” rather than skill.

Before the new law, immigrants came overwhelmingly from Western European democracies and Canada.  Afterward, Latin America and Asia dominated, while European immigration was reduced from 86% to a mere sliver of 13%. 

The law led to an influx of new Democratic voters via immigration.  Now, any politician wanting to land this growing immigrant vote—whether Democrat or Republican—had better find a way to pander to the idea of multiculturalism or, theoretically, risk alienating a major swath of voters.  Ronald Reagan presided over near record levels of annual legal immigration, and George W. Bush was anything but tough on immigration, maintaining immigration levels from the very same countries against which we struggled ideologically in the aftermath of 9/11.  No one wants to touch it.

The idea of any and all legal immigration being a net positive is something that has been deeply planted in the public conscience through leftist brainwashing and diversity promotion initiatives, typically starting in the public education system.  If anything, the Ipsos poll finally proves this to be definitively true, with the most educated being the most supportive of immigration.  Top-educated Canadians have the most positive view of immigration of anyone in the world.  As a product of that system, I can personally vouch for the amount of multicultural and diversity peddling to which the average student is subjected in the absence of any counterpoint.  This, despite the fact that the two founding factions of French and English Canadians haven’t managed to ever get along, even leading to a period of French nationalist terrorism, which has since been subdued by repeatedly buying off the French-Canadian province.

Perhaps the most interesting part of the Ipsos survey—and most in conflict with current policy—is that 45% of people prefer skilled, educated immigrants over those who are simply there to do jobs the locals won’t do.  And 48% still feel that immigrants take jobs from locals.  Therefore, the survey would suggest that people only really feel protective of low-paying jobs.  So future policy ought to focus on importing top talent and limiting low-level immigration—which is also a recipe for competitive success in the global economy.  It would be a good place to start.

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