Negative remarks about the capabilities of black and Muslim immigrants were common. There does not even seem to be much enthusiasm for Hispanics.
I had already dealt with this in my article:
Americans have a generally favorable impression of Chinese immigrants. But they bring serious faults. Despite high average intelligence and several thousand years of civilization, China has never been able to develop a political system other than despotism, scarcely ever benign. And, as I discussed in Kirkegaard Shows The Chinese Outliers In Dishonesty—U.S. Relationship, Immigration Policy Must Be Reassessed, the Chinese appear to have serious moral flaws by Western standards, including, in regions such as Fujian, a chilling willingness to sell their children into prostitution.
Of course, overall, I agree with my correspondents. (What a country this would have been if the Southern planters had been able to bring in Chinese indentured labor rather than African slaves!)
But this is not the issue. The issue is: If tens of millions of Chinese arrive, will this still be America? And how will the newcomers treat this country and its institutions?
This discussed the motivation of the 1924 Immigration Act. This legislation, in my opinion the greatest act of American statesmanship since the Declaration of Independence, caused a 40-year virtual moratorium on immigration. Not coincidently there followed an unprecedented rise in the standard of living among working- and middle-class Americans. The excessive immigration of the previous 40 years was largely assimilated.
Patriots had worked diligently for over a generation to achieve this. James Fulford supplied a convenient timeline here as part of a fuller discussion. John Derbyshire recently reprised the matter in Celebrating Calvin Coolidge: The Man Who Signed the 1924 Immigration Act.
MacDonald pointed out that this Act was fundamentally defensive.
After disproving the now academically enshrined smears that the Act’s motivation was White (in those days “Nordic”) Supremacism, MacDonald looks at what the supporters actually said:
Their basic argument was that, while all ethnic groups in the country had legitimate interests in immigration, the interests of the founding groups made restriction imperative.
…The Congressional Record reports Representative William N. Vaile of Colorado, one of the most prominent restrictionists:
“Let us concede, in all fairness that the Czech is a more sturdy laborer…that the Jew is the best businessman in the world, and that the Italian has…a spiritual exaltation and an artistic creative sense which the Nordic rarely attains. Nordics need not be vain about their own qualifications. It behooves them to be humble.
What we do claim is that the northern European and particularly Anglo-Saxons made this country. Oh, yes; the others helped. But… [t]hey came to this country because it was already made as an Anglo-Saxon commonwealth…
It is a good country. It suits us. And what we assert is that we are not going to surrender it to somebody else or allow other people, no matter what their merits, to make it something different.
More importantly, MacDonald points out:
What can be found in the statements of the reformers is actually fear of inferiority. Several representatives from the far West seem to have viewed the Japanese as racially equal or superior, not inferior…
A congressman described the Japanese as
“a relentless and unconquerable competitor of our people wherever he places himself.”
The restrictionists were concerned that immigration of people of other ethnic groups and cultures would ultimately deprive their own people of political and cultural power.
In 1924, of course, there were essentially no Japanese or Chinese in America to influence immigration policy.
So, apart from the permanent and insidious influence of the Cheap Labor Lobby, most of the furious opposition to the Bill was provided by the already large American Jewish community. (This seems always to be the case with immigration.) MacDonald discusses this extensively.
He quotes a rather pathetic appeal:
Representative Scott Leavitt stated quite bluntly that Jews should respect the desire of other Americans to retain the ethnic status quo:
“The instinct for national and race preservation is not one to be condemned… No one should be better able to understand the desire of Americans to keep America American than… [Mr. Sabath], who is leading the attack on this measure, or the gentlemen from New York, Mr. Dickstein, Mr. Jacobstein, Mr. Celler, and Mr. Perlman. They are of the one great historic people who have maintained the identity of their race throughout the centuries because they believe sincerely that they are a chosen people, with certain ideals to maintain, and knowing that the loss of racial identity means a change of ideals.”
A century later, we can see this appeal was ignored.
It’s time to exculpate the 1924 law—a law that succeeded in its aim of preserving the ethnic status quo for over 40 years.
The law did indeed represent the ethnic self-interest of its proponents—albeit not “racism,” if racism is properly understood as irrational prejudice.
But the anti-restrictionists also had their own ethnic interests at heart.
My answer to those who write telling me that a big Chinese influx will provide lots of respectable neighbors is:
Any large immivasion means lower wage levels, more housing competition and poorer educational experiences, in the first instance for the working class. With spectacular cold-heartedness, the Democrat Party is ignoring this: NYC Mayor Adams Has Migrant Crisis “Solution”: Attack Living Standards Of N.Y. Working Class.
Beyond that, just as no one would applaud the introduction into their child’s classroom of large quantities of bigger, more developed and more violent black kids, why would anyone welcome the introduction of intelligent and appallingly industrious Chinese children to carry off the academic prizes?
(American Plutocrats, overconfident in their ability to protect their own progeny, scoff at this. Ultimately, when ethnocentrism bites, their descendants will curse them.)
Some of those writing to me take the view that America, and white counties generally, should welcome being overrun and (at least culturally) conquered if the invaders are strong enough to do this.
My reply: Only whites, and no other race, are brainwashed enough to believe this. Holding this view means extinction.
Which I am confident many of those writing to me already know.
Reposted with permission from VDARE.
Email Patrick Cleburne.