Monday, July 13, 2015

The Immigration Question: Part One

The Huns, led by Attila, ride into Italy from the north, 434 A.D.
I left this amended and expanded comment on a July 12th Gatestone article by Soeren Kern, “Europe’s Great Migration Crisis”:

The main problem is a civilization one. The overwhelming number of “immigrants" [or “migrants”] bring cultural and moral attitudes with them that are antithetical to a civilized existence. They will also bring old cultural habits and generations- or even ages-old animosities towards other immigrant groups with them and will continue them in whatever Western country they settle in. Witness the Sunni-Shi’ite division. They will all expect to be "taken care of" economically by their host governments, thus adding more welfare dependents to already burdened welfare systems. They will be hostile to the whole concept of the rule of law that sustains a civilized, ordered existence.

Observe the attitudes and tactics of Muslims in every European country; they expect the various European societies to conform to their religious-political norms and refuse to assimilate into the larger, indigenous society. In Britain, it's not only the Muslims who thumb their noses at British law and culture; there are the Romany gypsies and other ethnicity-centered immigrant groups who demand a "separate but equal" status, as well, and are willing to raise hell if they aren't granted it.

The first hint of resistance by authorities triggers cries of "racism" or "Islamophobia," and the government backs down. The British government is so fearful of being accused of racism that it won't crack down on Muslim rape gangs that prey on British girls and women.

At bottom of all this throughout Europe is the poisonous, moral certitude-sapping policy of political correctness. The U.S. is now in a chaotic debate over the invasion of the country but thousands of "illegals" crossing into it from Mexico. This is aside from the "resettlement" of Muslims in towns and cities in the country by the federal government.

Soeren Kern wrote:

Europe's migration crisis is exposing the deep divisions that exist within the European Union, which European federalists have long hailed as a model for post-nationalism and global citizenship. Faced with an avalanche of migrants, a growing number of EU member states have moved decisively to put their own national interests above notions of EU solidarity. Hungary's parliament, for instance, has approved the construction of a massive border fence with Serbia as part of a new anti-immigration law that also tightens asylum rules.

The move is aimed at stopping tens of thousands of migrants from Africa, Asia and the Middle East from entering Hungary, which has become a key gateway for illegal immigration into the European Union.

Hungarian officials say drastic measures are necessary because of the EU's inaction in the face of an unprecedented migration crisis, which has seen more than 150,000 migrants cross into Europe during the first six months of 2015. More than 715,000 people have applied for asylum in the EU during the past twelve months.

Kern’s article describes the various physical measures European countries are taking to stem the flow of migrants into their countries: walls, fences, barbed wire, and, in Britain’s case, corralling would-be hitch-hikers and stowaways coming from Europe through the Channel Tunnel in a camp just outside the Tunnel at Calais.

Kern also details the bureaucratic way of stemming the flow: by making it harder to seek “asylum” in Europe, or by denying it all together.

But, the first observation to make is: These European Union countries are fearful of the nonstop waves of migrants alien and likely hostile to their Western societies and cultures. And the natural question to ask then is: Why are they so fearful and in a panic? Every one of these countries has advocated and legislated multiculturalism. Are they now just realizing what a foolhardy policy it is? Has any one of those governments the honesty and courage to repudiate that policy? Except for a few individuals who stand up and say, “Yes, Western culture is infinitely superior to that of any immigrant settler in the West,” such as Geert Wilders of the Netherlands, Europe is governed by a variety of statist elites who invested heavily in multiculturalism and who are making their citizens pay the price for it.

Kern quotes Viktor Orban, Hungary’s Prime Minister:

“The face of European civilization... will never again be what it is now. There is no way back from a multicultural Europe. Neither to a Christian Europe, nor to the world of national cultures."

Say, rather, devolve into a mongrel culture of no specific character but whose chief distinction will be a dominant Islamic coloring overseen by dhimmi European politicians and elected Muslim ones. It would exist tenuously on the remnants of capitalism and freedom and be sustained temporarily by various welfare systems – temporarily until the money and inertia are spent and the private sector finally expires. Then the European elites can impose across-the-board socialism.

The Liberal/Left’s official history is that the West colonized Africa and the Middle East and Asia, exploited their “natural resources” and enslaved their populations,  and brought untold misery and human rights violations to those areas. These areas were invaded and raped by the West. But now it’s payback time and these regions’ impoverished inhabitants are invading Europe in turn. The Liberal/Left sees the phenomenon as a form of “cultural” and “racial” reparations.

That’s the Progressive, Howard Zinn-kind of interpretation of the current immigration crisis. Who impoverished these refugees? The unacceptable, non-Progressive answer is that it was the myriad corrupt regimes and dictatorships in Africa and the Middle East. Like Mexico, they’re glad to get rid of their excess and unwanted paupers and foist as many of them as possible on the West.

A welfare state that patronizes the worst in men – the unshakable desire to be identified with a group, collective, or tribe, and an implicit obligation to recognize and encourage the collectivist worth of an individual and an individual’s unshakable identification with the tribe or the group – be he of an ethnic, religious, or tribal “heritage” – isn’t going to suddenly see 10,000 Somalians or Turks or Pakistanis abruptly develop an appreciation for Rachmaninoff, classical Greek art, or laissez-faire economics. It just isn’t going to happen. That isn’t even happening with most indigenous, umpteenth-generation European or American youth being “educated” in those indoctrination crèches called secondary schools and universities.

A British correspondent of mine, responding to my Gatestone comment above, made these astute observations about the government policies that have put Europe in a cultural bind:

Whatever they expect, it was up to the West to clarify its values and ensure that the rule of law was understood and accepted by all aspiring citizens. 

The reason it didn’t is the widespread belief that cultural values are innate rather than a matter of choice. 

How can the West have granted Charitable Status to a religion that practices its own antithetical legal system? Why did it grant planning permission for places of worship where the values of the West are routinely trashed and where adherents have no intention of separating Church and State?

Aye, there’s the rub. The whole dreamy policy of “diversity” and multiculturalism rests on the premise that cultural values are based, not on choice, but on one’s genes and so are innate and outside of one’s choice. It is wrong, and the very height of arrogant cultural hegemony, say the politically correct, to expect immigrants to dissolve their “national identities” and immerse themselves into a “melting pot” governed by the rule of law – of objective law founded on the sanctity of individual rights.

But their “currents” have turned perilously awry, and they are in a rush to establish corrective measures when none will undo what they have done.

In Part Two I will discuss the American version of Hamlet’s “To Be, or Not to Be.”

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