Friday, March 14, 2008

But they're brown, and therefore evil

Dave Neiwert has an excellent post up debunking six major myths surrounding undocumented immigrants.
An early page in the poll, headlined "Biggest Concerns About Illegal Immigration," featured the public responses to a set of concerns that were identified by the pollsters as the most common issues raised in focus groups, letting the poll respondents say what their "one or two biggest concerns about illegal immigration today" might be. They ran thus:
Immigrants receiving free public services such as health care (48%)

Immigrants not paying taxes (35%)

Takes jobs from Americans and lowers wages (20%)

Too many immigrants aren't learning English (20%)

Weakens our security against terrorism (18%)

Causing crime problems in many communities (17%)

If you look down that list, something stands out: Each item reflects a fear based either on outright false information or on gross distortions from a highly selective set of facts.

Readers of our earlier discussions of the immigration debate will already be familiar with the groundlessness of most of these concerns, but it's still worthwhile going through them, and getting the requisite reality checks, so we can see just how far astray from anything rational we're wandering in this debate.

Read the whole thing.

No comments: