The new national commander of the American Legion is Fang A. Wong, who moved here (legally) from Hong Kong with family members at age twelve in 1960 to join his father. He enlisted in the Army during Vietnam, where he served for more than two years, and retired from the service in 1989.
Wong’s story is truly admirable, and I hope I get to meet him, as I met one of his predecessors when I addressed the Legion’s annual meeting a number of years ago.
Does Wong’s example somehow mean that mass legal immigration is therefore a good thing, that our current arrangements ought to remain untouchable? The question sounds silly (especially since Wong came before Ted Kennedy got a hold of our immigration law), but that’s exactly the kind of thing apologists for mass immigration say all the time. Now, I might conceivably be willing to rethink my position if there were some kind of highly accurate test to ensure that every immigrant we admitted would become not only a productive, law-abiding member of society but also an ardent patriot, deeply committed to the principles of the Constitution, displaying a genuine enthusiasm for our nation’s history and culture, and immune to the wiles of our post-American elites.
But there is no such test.
Instead, immigrants are people like any other — some are as I described above, others are loathsome criminals, and most are just ordinary people looking for a better paycheck, social order, and a place where cops don’t shake you down for bribes at every turn. And because immigrants are actual people, rather than props in a morality play or memories from your nonna’s attic, mass immigration conflicts with the goals and characteristics of a modern society.