Saturday, February 02, 2002

Denbeste at the USS Clueless has a good essay on what the policy wonks call American Exceptionalism and immigration. One advantage America has is that we're descendents of risk-takers who took a flier on this new country. The timid ones stayed home. I think it is that risk-taking spirit that makes this place work. Immigration gives the US booster shots of can-do people, creating a risk-taking drain as well as a brain drain. There might be a explanation of the black-white problem in that hypothesis; the ancestors of most African-Americans were hauled over here by force, thus there isn't the immigrant tradition in the black community for the most part. It would be interesting to look at Afro-Americans of Caribbean descent, to see if having their forebears come from Jamaica or Trinidad to the US makes them different from people whose parents came from Mississippi or Georgia. Thanks, IRB, for the link.

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