Arguing Immigration: The Controversy and Crisis Over the Future of Immigration in America

Nicolaus Mills, Editor, Nathan Glazer, Designed by Touchstone Books $16.95 (224p) ISBN 978-0-671-89558-7
Decent, if not terribly deep, this collection of 18 essays includes some original pieces with others reprinted from publications like the National Review, the New York Times and Dissent. Mills, editor of Debating Affirmative Action, contributes a thorough introduction, citing the curious division between liberals (trade unionists fear immigrants) and conservatives (free marketeers welcome them); the charged debates about the economics of immigration; and the questions, both valid and alarmist, about the role of immigration in current cultural fragmentation. Unfortunately, several of the following essays expand little on Mills's points. Among the more interesting are those by novelist Toni Morrison, writing about the scorning of native born blacks by immigrants, an ""act of racial contempt"" that transforms an immigrant into ""an entitled white""; researcher Richard Rothstein, on how American foreign policy (labor standards, etc.) affects immigration; Richard Rodriguez, arguing that immigrants work harder than Californians; and Jack Miles, musing darkly on post-Rodney King Los Angeles. However, the book would have been enhanced by case studies on the actual lives and experiences of immigrants. The collection has only two immigrants, Vietnamese refugee (and now lawyer) Viet D. Dinh and Holocaust survivor Gerda Bikales, both of whom argue for a more equitable asylum policy, rather than one as Dinh notes, ""predicated on such legalistic hair-splitting."" (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 10/03/1994
Release date: 10/01/1994
Ebook - 224 pages - 978-1-4391-4435-0
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