The kernel of Trump’s speech was rather obvious: “The bottom line is that the only reason the killer was in America in the first place was because we allowed his family to come here. That is a fact, and it’s a fact we need to talk about.”
The reaction of much of the opinion elite was nearly instantaneous: Whatever we do, let’s not talk about that fact.
Countless articles have been written on how much better we are at assimilating Muslim immigrants than Europe is, usually with a heavy element of back-patting over our openness and fluidity as a society in contrast to the self-defeating insularity of a country like France.
This may well be true, but the assumption that we have the magic formula is, at the very least, under stress now that we’ve repeatedly suffered mass killings by second-generation immigrants.
The Islamic State model of inspiring “lone wolves” already here is dependent on loosely assimilated American Muslims susceptible to its hateful appeals. Disturbingly, it is finding takers.
In six months, terrorists have killed more than 60 people on our shores; two of the perpetrators were the sons of immigrants, and one an immigrant herself.
It may be that one of the reasons we have avoided the problems of a France is sheer numbers. France has 50 percent more Muslim immigrants than we do, even though it is a much smaller country. Only 1 percent of the U.S. population is Muslim; 7.5 percent of the French population is.