Former Congressman Tom Tancredo delivered a speech to an overflow student audience at American University February 24, sponsored by a promising new collegiate organization—Youth for Western Civilization.
Tancredo is rightly a hero to all immigration reform patriots. But at American University, in a clumsy attempt to appease the overwhelmingly unsympathetic students—idealistic American proponents of a multicultural, multiracial, pluralistic society; a sizable contingent of young non-Westerners—Tancredo, flustered at times, struggled to define his message.[Watch YouTube clips here and here.]
Tancredo’s central point, namely that Western Civilization is worth preserving, simply fell flat. Any concern that Western societies will be unable to assimilate mass immigration was fundamentally anathema to the audience. In particular, the non-Western contingent obviously prefers to remain unassimilable. They understand that blood is thicker than water and that ethnic and racial heritage is worth preserving.
Tancredo’s urgent call for “assimilation” employs a catchphrase that too many patriotic immigration reformers, intent on saving their nation and local communities from alien annexation, have failed to carefully assess.
Do we really want a massive influx of non-Westerners to “assimilate”, in a rather superficial way, into our communities? Do we need non-Western refugees from Third World countries settling in vast, largely homogenous areas or Michigan, Maine and the upper Northwest, currently stable, safe, highly livable, neighborly communities?“It is not about race”, the soft-spoken Tancredo said at the outset of his speech. He asserted his steadfast opposition to diversity, multiculturalism, and (in this speech, mostly illegal) immigration. But he also repeatedly emphasized that his concerns about assimilation, citizenship, and Western Civilization had nothing to do with race or ethnicity.
Tancredo was repeating the familiar neoconservative refrain that America is not about peoples, demography or ancestral heritage, but is simply a “proposition nation” of “values” and “ideals”, open to anyone willing to give them lip service.
But this is the equivalent of believing that, yes, the leopard can indeed change his spots.
Tancredo is a bit of a "tragic hero" type at best. He saw the increasing numbers of foreigners pouring into his state several years ago and became alarmed. He took his concern to the public and found that they were hungry for such a voice. He then turned this into a rallying cry for a political campaign and a run for the White House.
But Tancredo is a career politician and has no stomach for rhetoric beyond generalities (the sort of inoffensive rhetoric that appeals to largest number of peoples to win their votes without alienating special interest groups).
So he in effect does more harm than good because he is constantly apoligizing for holding the positions he does.
America is obviously not a "proposition nation" whose ideals and principles can be adopted by just anybody. Otherwise we would not have to bring the world here to embrace "the proposition". We could, instead, simply bring the ideology to them, wherever they may be....
The counter example to that would be Marxism. You didn't need to travel to the Soviet Union to embrace Marxist ideology by assimilating into Russian culture.
The Chinese didn't need to move to Russia to embrace the Marxist experiment.
Neither did the Cubans, North Koreans or various other peoples.
For a people to be Marxist they simply needed to institute Marxist policies in their government and social institutions. And many of them did!
If Americanism is simply a proposition or ideology, then the third world should be able to adopt it precepts where they're at!
But that never happens.
That America's Western way of life cannot be adopted by the thirdworld in their own nations is ample testimony to America being a genetic quality, not a philosophical one.