The Border That Joins (Maryland Studies in Public Philosophy Series): Mexican Migrants and U. S. Responsibility


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  • Posted July 15, 2013

    HE BORDER THAT JOINS: Mexican Migrants and U.S. Responsibility,

    HE BORDER THAT JOINS: Mexican Migrants and U.S. Responsibility, is part of the philosophy-oriented series by the University of Maryland which includes BOUNDRIES (1981), by the same two editors.

    The book is as important when it was written as it is today. One only need to see today's headlines on immigration to see this. It is unfortunate that it was not more lively written and could have used better editing, in which case I may have given it five stars.

    Two chapters stand out. This first by American philosophy professor, Judith Lichtenberg. She affirms what then MIT professor Wayne Cornelius proved with his studies in the late 1970's that undocumented immigrants do NOT take jobs from Americans, be it manual labor or otherwise. More recently, academics like sociolgoist Douglas Massey and labor economist David Card, have reaffirmed this fact which flies in the face of nativist propaganda.

    The other chapter that stands out is by Mexican anthropologist Lourdes Arzipe (MIGRACION, ETNICISMO, Y CAMBIO SOCIAL, 1978), who concludes from her field work that population growth does NOT contribute to migration nor does it necessarily "cause" poverty. Her findings here not only supports the anti-Malthusian conclusions of former FAO director Josue De Castro in THE GEOGRAPHY OF HUNGER( Little, Brown, 1952), but shatters the alarmist claims of the Paul Ehrlichs and other neo-Malthusians (both of the Left and of the Right) of the world.

    The final chapter written by American economist Vernon Briggs takes an opposing view with a tenuous claim that the undocumented worker is taking jobs away from unemployed Mexican-Americans.

    A supposed Volume II featuring the writings of Mexican immigration expert Jorge Bustamante, is nowhere to be seen.

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