Saturday, July 5, 2008

America is Making a Risky Bet on its Entire Future

Since the 1960s, America has been placing ever more of its chips on replacing its culture with one that--as soon as possible--has no dominant culture, in which its residents (legal and illegal) have primary identification with their own race, ethnicity, gender, religion, or sexual orientation.

I am certainly not enamored of some aspects of American culture, for example, its worship of materialism and of celebrity, the too-great disparity between rich and poor, its failure to provide an adequate health care safety net, and the liberal bias of its most influential media and colleges. But America has spawned a generally good quality of life for most Americans and produced a remarkable array of accomplishments from the car to the computer, from stents to Spielberg.

I am amazed that America is betting its entire future on multiculturalism. Yes, the U.S. could end up a dynamic place in which "diversity is our greatest strength," but multiculturalism could, instead, accelerate America's descent into third-world status. After all, not one of the world's 200+ countries is a clear multicultural success story. Diversity, far from a strength, seems, in every country including the U.S., to perennially be more a source of strife than of strength.

Yet, without firing a shot, identity groups within the U.S. are replacing American culture with some yet evolving mixture in which pluribus drowns out unum, in which what's good for America (let alone the world) is replaced with what's good for Latinos, women, Blacks, fundamentalist Christians, etc.

As the decades go on, would you bet that most Americans will find the U.S. a more pleasant or less pleasant place to live? A more productive or less productive country? I'm not sure, but I am certain that we don't have sufficient basis for betting the whole country's future on multiculturalism.


Matthew said...

Yes, because multiculturalism worked so well in the Balkan States and Yugoslavia... ::sigh::

I really hope that people wake up soon and really challenge this, in a method that cannot be shouted down by the "anti-multiculturalism = racism" crowd.

Keep it up, Marty. I add my voice to yours on this issue.

Craig said...

I think if you compare our developing multiculturalism with other nations' you also have to include the foundational differences in the respective governments.

I'm far from the token rah-rah brand of patriotism that seems to come from so many people around this holiday. But I do appreciate that there's something different -- even in this age of excess and materialism -- about America. We were founded with more freedoms than other nations. Perhaps our society is better able to embrace the multiculturalism you write about.

Anonymous said...

The bad side of multiculturalism is that we end up focusing on unchangeable (except religion) aspects of a person. All of these aspects are socially insignificant, but for some reason, they are magnified and made to be all important.

Whenever I'm asked to identify myself on some sort of application, I skip that section. What would it be like if I was not female and black/African American, but instead just American?

There is, in my opinion, no good reason that Americans should be anything other than simply Americans. This country at this time has far more benefits than problems, and I would rather be here now than any other time or place. I agree with Mr. Nemko that it will not be that way for long if we continue to separate ourselves more and more.

Marty Nemko said...

If I had my way, we'd think of ourselves, of course, not as hyphenated Americans but not even as Americans.

We'd think of ourselves as world citizens. I care as much for a person who lives in Bangladesh as I do for someone who lives in the U.S. The place of one's birth is an accident of fate. That shouldn't affect my degree of caring.

From where I sit, the wisest thinking usually asks the question, "What will yield the greatest net good, worldwide?"

Dave said...

For the past 40 years, the West has imported and worshipped diversity. We always hear about multiculturalism, ethnic vibrancy, etc. and the result has been social strife, higher crime, Islamic terrorism, and the importation of new norms that are repugnant by Western standards. The UK government's recognition of polygamy, for instance. A statement by a High Court judge on incorporating Sharia law is another example of this madness. How can an open, democratic society accept such a dogmatic, illiberal creed?

I wish to make clear that I am not against the adoption of non-Western values, as long as they

A. Do not threaten the cultural and democratic institutions that form the bedrock of our civilization.


B. Our society can benefit (progress) from such values/ideas, and that they are compatible with our own.

I think we can learn much from the Japanese. As a monocultural entity, Japan embraced many Western values and ideas, and used them to its advantage. The Japanese took points A + B into consideration. The late 19th century Meiji Restoration helped the Japanese to close the gap with the West, bringing Japan from the 18th century into the 20th century in just 30 years! The Japanese maintain a tightly controlled immigration policy, however, foreigners are used to teach English to corporate executives, coach sports teams and maintain computer hardware. They drive automobiles of the highest quality (a Western invention). My Japanese housemate grew up in a European-style house and told me that he eats curry foods! And do you see Paris street scenes of burning cars or the kind of hate marches we have witnessed in London? Nope. Furthermore, no demographic arugment can be made because Japanese fertility rates are just as low as Europe's. And we don't see the Japanese importing millions of immigrant peoples that Europe has been doing.

Europe has a post colonial guilt complex and the United States has its own guilt complex over slavery and discimination. This has led to Eurabia in Europe and Reconquista in America. Japan does not have a guilt complex and they must think we are mad for allowing alien groups to redefine the cultural and political landscape of Western society. This is something the Japanese would never tolerate in their own society.

Multiculturalism has been a disaster. Aside from the violence, the economic costs are spiraling out of control. Wages are driven down and ethnic divisions are clearly seen in welfare assistance schemes. Furthermore, and one of the biggest problems to arise from Multiculturalism, is the idea that there is no set of core values. For Multiculturalists, all values are equal. Some are actually more equal than others! In Europe, we are told that value systems of alien cultures are superior to our own! This has created a spiritual and cultural vacuum in Europe as well as a diconnect between the indigenous whites and their governing elites. UK Bp. Michael Nazir Ali, Bishop of Rochester, has spoken of the consequences of such a vacuum. When such a vacuum opens up, something else will want to fill it. In this case, Islamism and Sharia.

If we wish for Unum, then we must do away with Multiculturalism, which only encourages groups to remain insular, thereby creating a co-existence of alien cultures and values that inevitably clash with our own. Again, this leads to the violence and social strife that has become such a plague in the West. We must embrace our own culture and core (Western) values and only then will minority groups be forced to assmiliate. It is civilizational confidence -- the confidence in our cultural and political institutions, and our traditions --that will free the West from its guilt complex and RESTORE the Unum we so desperately need.

Anonymous said...

You really lost me on your last comment, Marty. I agreed with your article but the worldwide thing lost me.
"Worldwide" is at about 5th place for me. I'd start with family, me, US, and then, maybe the world.
Our sick slide into multiculturalism is probably net good for the world--but it is net negative for the US. We are systematically averaging down as we let Mexicans and other Latin Americans enter the US. My problem isn't Latins per se, it is the fact that the real talent from Latin countries doesn't tend to come here. We are getting an underclass with values that will only reduce the productive capacity of this country.
I'm for immigration into the middle class; we create enough underclass on our own.

Marty Nemko said...


Thank you for taking the time to write such a substantive post. The broadening of the discussion to what's occurring in Europe and Japan is very helpful.

Dave said...

Thank you for posting it, Dr. Nemko.

While the West turns to the Third World to keep itself from falling off a demographic cliff (low fertility), the Japanese will turn to technology. The same goes for climate change.

Low fertility rates among the indigenous peoples + Third World immigration will lead to cultural suicide.