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Mark Steyn made a fascinating observation recently, as he is wont to do. Referring to “neocolonial condescension” in comparison with the supposed condescension of Western colonialism, Steyn noted a similar attitude among people who think all the world should be eagerly welcomed as immigrants into our great nation.
A century ago, a proud imperialist would claim the citizens of poor and war-torn nations would benefit from the Anglosphere’s legal, moral, and political examples. By imposing these models, or at least arguing for their adoption in foreign societies, Western citizens sought to aid poor peoples by exporting a superior culture.
This idea horrifies a modern multiculturalist, who denies that one culture can be objectively judged better than others (except when denigrating one’s own culture and eagerly latching on to foreign curiosities). But the presumption of cultural superiority is echoed in modern immigration arguments.
Today, rather than exporting a superior way of life, Westerners want to import anyone and everyone not already here to enjoy it. The presumption is that poor foreigners are incapable of manifesting peace and prosperity in their home countries. To want good lives for them is to remove them from the “rat-holes” they were born in and ship them en masse to our own shores.
It’s colonialism in reverse. Don’t try to make more nations of the world healthy and wealthy and wise like the good ole USA. Just get as many people as you can out of those nations… because those places are surely doomed.
To truly respect people is to place demands upon their behavior. The proper focus is to improve the world, not to concentrate people wherever is doing best at the moment.Published in