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Celebrating America's Long-Term Strength, Not Its Impending Death, on International Migrants Day (Huffington Post)

December 16, 2011

Senior fellow Michael Clemens' piece on International Migrants Day was featured in the Huffington Post.

From the Article

December 18th will be International Migrants Day. I'm delighted, because continued migration flows across the globe will add trillions of dollars to the beleaguered world economy.

You're not planning a big party on the 18th, you say? Neither are the various pressure groups working hard to slow or stop migration to the United States and Europe -- outfits like NumbersUSA, FAIR, the Center for Immigration Studies, the British National Party, or France's Front National.

This spring I sat in an auditorium in New York and watched two heroes of that international movement, Kris Kobach and Tom Tancredo, list their reasons why immigration has pushed the United States to the breaking point: Immigrants want to take space but there is no space left. Immigrants want to take jobs but there are no jobs left. Immigrants want to take welfare checks -- our "goodies", said Kobach with a smile -- but there is no money left. It would be nice if America could still be the land of opportunity, they say, as it was for their own ancestors. But America was strong then. It's weak now, so weak that more immigrants will push it right over the edge.

These immigration opponents are planning a funeral for America. But I won't attend; America is not dying. When I walked out of that auditorium and looked around, I didn't see the broken, limping, moribund country I had just been told about. This country, my country, has proven the pessimists wrong again and again. Its proud history deserves more optimism and faith than this.

Read it here.

Related Experts

Photo of Michael Clemens
Co-Director of Migration, Displacement, and Humanitarian Policy and Senior Fellow