It’s not often that I enter a post about legal immigration, probably because it doesn’t make the news much. That doesn’t change the fact that it’s one of the biggest challenges we face in stabilizing our population. Every year we admit over 1.1 million new immigrants. This article describes just one citizenship ceremony in St. Louis at which citizenship was bestowed on 1,000 new immigrants. That may sound like a big deal until you realize that, on average, there are three such ceremonies somewhere in the U.S. every day, day-in and day-out, year after year. Every day we exacerbate our dependence on foreign oil by adding 3,000 more oil consumers. Every day we add 3,000 more carbon emitters. Every day we add about 1,500 more to our labor force, even as the number of jobs declines. This makes absolutely no sense. We have far too many serious problems to continue doing this kind of thing just because it makes us feel all warm and fuzzy to hear new citizens speak so highly of their adopted country.
We can be proud of our immigrant roots and our history as a beacon of hope for the downtrodden. But the mathematical reality is that we can’t keep doing this unless we ourselves want to be trampled by the effects of overpopulation. Then we’ll be a beacon of hope for no one, not even our own citizens. It’s time to hang a “no vacancy” sign on that statue in New York harbor.