Open Borders: The Science and Ethics of Immigration

Bryan Caplan and Zach Weinersmith. First Second, $27.99 (256p) ISBN 978-1-250-31696-7
In Caplan’s concise and clarifying barn burner of an economics thesis, he declares: “I want to see two parties fight about who loves immigration more.” The George Mason University professor lays out his pro–open borders argument via wonky charts, data sets, and philosophical ruminations, brought to life by webcomics artist and science buff Weinersmith’s clean, cheerful, and colorful drawings. Avoiding the nonfiction comics trap of info dumps, the science and art interplay in often amusing sequences that pan out to the bigger picture from cited facts and analysis. When Caplan points out that immigrants repopulate small, rural towns that have turned into “zombie economies,” the image of a plague of zombies strolling a hollowed-out town center makes the idea stick. Both the arguments and visuals challenge toxic myths about immigrants—such as that they are responsible for increases in violent crime in the United States. “Whatever you’ve heard, the answer is no. On average, the foreign-born are less criminally inclined than natives,” Caplan says, coolly staring down a masked bandit in an American flag shirt. The combination of Caplan’s deep research and Weinersmith’s snappy storytelling adds up to a persuasive treatise that sees open policy around immigration as historically positive and a future potential rising tide of consumers and producers together lifting boats and bottom lines. (Oct.)
Reviewed on : 08/20/2019
Release date: 10/29/2019
Genre: Comics
Hardcover - 256 pages - 978-1-250-31697-4
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