We can't isolate the West

  I am surprised to see so much one-sidedness on population and immigration packed in one issue, and I trust that the Writers on the Range column, and related letters, do not represent the mindset of your readership (HCN, 2/16/04: Why I’m running). Why would the people of the West, many of whom have migrated here from the East and elsewhere, want to keep new people out, other than for self-preservation? We live in one world, and we cannot isolate the West from that world. It is well-known that nowadays, the more open societies, which can draw expertise globally, thrive, while self-preserving, jingoistic societies wither.

Surely there are too many people on this planet already, but the good news is that global population is expected to stabilize sometime later this century.

The radical change in our administration’s global policy a few years ago (including the Iraq war, the failure to recognize the International Criminal Court, the Kyoto protocol, and the U.N. Convention on Child Labor, among others) has dropped the esteem of the United States in the eyes of people in Europe and Asia, and few of them, especially the most skilled labor, aspire anymore to migrate to the United States.

Bart Geerts
Laramie, Wyoming