Death of the 'melting pot'

Memo to liberals: process matters.  Annett Kirk, widow of  Russell Kirk, notes her husband’s view that  the best reformer is one who “combines an ability to reform with a disposition to preserve; the man who loves change is wholly disqualified, from his lust, to be the agent of change.”

Though he passed 20 years ago, Kirk had a keen insight on human nature.  And a prophetic analysis of President Obama.  Americans don’t like to be bullied.  We accept change that’s thoughtful, measured, consistent with our traditions and values, and, perhaps most importantly, arrived at though a legitimate process of compromise.  It’s another reason why Americans give Obamacare a failing grade – though of course it is failing in actuality.  Still, Americans know that it was forced upon them, not adopted by them.

The same holds true in the immigration debate.  Many of the 37 percent of Latinos who oppose the president’s executive amnesty know in their hearts that theirs would be an illegitimate citizenship.  Will they temporarily be tagged as “Obama-grants”?  And see that status withdrawn by a future president with a future executive order?

Let’s juxtapose such federal “cram-downs” with a more natural, traditional immigration happening now in Detroit, a city Bloomberg says looks pretty good to some folks.

An influx of 16,000 immigrant Latinos big enough to prompt the opening of 17 taquerias in five years has spared southwest Detroit from the city’s downward spiral.

In and around Hamtramck, a two-square-mile enclave surrounded by the city, almost 10,000 immigrants from Bangladesh and Yemen bolster the economy of a town once known for its Polish heritage. A few miles away, Chaldeans who once thronged north Detroit want to revive their presence there with housing for refugees fleeing the Islamic State in their homeland of Iraq.

“I’m not sure many other people would take the chance that I took,” said Bangladesh native Khurshed Ahmed, 32, a naturalized citizen who five years ago opened a restaurant to tap the local market of Muslims craving halal pizza.

His words bring to mind the sonnet on  the Statue of Liberty:

Give me your tired, your poor,

Your huddled masses, yearning to breathe free,

The wretched refuse of your teeming shore,

Send these, the homeless, tempest tost to me,

I lift my lamp beside the golden door.

Bloomberg also reports that “Michigan Governor Rick Snyder has asked Obama to issue 50,000 visas over five years to high-skill and entrepreneurial immigrants who agree to live in Detroit.”  Interesting what ordered liberty, community, freedom, and responsibility can achieve.  

We used to call it a “melting pot.”  It was a wondrous concept, where the best features of people from the world over mixed and mingled and came together – learned a common language and a common set of values and created a common culture. 

What today’s liberal objects to is that the grand melting pot was the outgrowth of a yearning for ordered liberty.