Latinos and Immigration

November 10, 2010

One of the interesting things about conventional wisdom is that very often it turns out to be based upon assumptions that are false. A case in point being the widespread misconception that all Americans whose family origins lie in Latin America and the Caribbean are reflexively pro-mass immigration and in favor of amnesty, when in fact most of these people have more nuanced views on the subject.Just as some Hispanic Americans view newcomers to this country as family or compatriots, others view them as economic competitors,  as the results from this Pew Hispanic Center survey illustrate. Also, it would appear that the Latino community-insofar as such a set of linguistically and ethnically diverse groups can be said to constitute a single community-has also soured on the de facto amnesty illegal aliens in this country currently enjoy. 

Mark Krikorian has some interesting observations about this poll-and a link to his organization’s own poll on the subject-over at NRO. Of particular interest is his exploration of the inherent flaws in Pew’s methodology, which neglects to include an attrition through enforcement option for potential survey-takers to choose from, relying instead upon a black-and-white choice between wholesale deportation of illegal aliens or de jure amnesty. Despite this flaw, the results from the Pew Hispanic Center are worth examining more closely. They have the most accurate data on this subject, even if their aims are misguided from my point of view.

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