A Debt the Many Owe the Few

Scripps-Howard News Service 9.11.02
Balint Vazsonyi

None can blame those who have access to the public for long, emotional commentaries about the anniversary that is upon us this week. Many feel the need to speak, and most remember those among us who have lost someone near and dear.

I believe soothing words, even accolades of appreciation will not do on this occasion. We have to address the debt we owe thousands and thousands of fellow-Americans.

President Lyndon B. Johnson died before he would have had to face the terrifying consequences of his thoughtless, bombastic legislation known as the Immigration Act of 1965. Just then, he was swept up in a frenzy of "civil rights" measures, unable to distinguish between long-overdue justice to citizens of the United States and people who have never even heard of it. Suddenly, coming to America became another "right."

"This bill we sign today is not a revolutionary bill. It does not affect the lives of millions. It will not restructure the shape of our daily lives" - he proclaimed confidently.

Tell that to the thousands who died, the tens of thousands who mourn their fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, or children.

As with so much of America's noble initiatives, this, too, soon became the domain of the agenda people. Their agenda: to make America "more diverse." They wanted to "celebrate our diversity," and first had to create the kind of diversity they wished to celebrate. The Act enabled them to do so. All they needed was to apply to it Lenin's thesis he called political correctness, meaning an approach that will be in line with the policies of the Bolshevik Party. (Hitler preferred the formulation "socially correct.")

The result was the most profound demographic change in America, on a scale never seen in history except when multitudes overran countries. To the disappointment of politically correct readers, I hasten to add that the change does not refer to the national origin or skin tone of new immigrants.

The change refers to the type of human being who was now invited - no: encouraged - to come here. For almost two centuries before, a simple, unwritten contract applied. People of the world were welcome to come here if they wished to participate in the great opportunity, first studying, comprehending, then embracing without reservation what makes Americans - Americans. As a result, immigrants tended to be more passionately committed to the American model than many a native-born citizen. By welcoming newcomers, America was not becoming less American - possibly even more so.

But by now, all that has been relegated to a frequently-broadcast, politically correct commercial, in which people who seem to represent literally every type of human being who ever walked the Earth mechanically repeat the phrase, " I am American." It may be a safe bet that a large majority of them wouldn't know how to explain what they mean by that. The bitter reality is that no one is expected to adopt even a modicum of American-ness - not the language, not the custom, not the morality.

In order to make certain that native-born Americans don't stand out, our children are being deprived of education in national history, national traditions, national characteristics.

As well as two oceans, the primary defense of this country was predicated on the easy recognizability of Americans here, there, everywhere - almost to a fault. And people learned that, with the exception of criminals, no American had to fear another. Any two Americans could act in accord, a minute-or-so after meeting.

In a famous World War II film, highly trained Germans infiltrate an American unit. Their leader is unmasked when he asks what a hot-fudge sundae is. Try that today in, say, Detroit.

This has been a very long road by which to reach my destination. I believe, before we can reach "closure," all those who have rendered America a place where no one knows any more who and what the next person might be, all those who have failed to enforce even the minuscule border controls we still have in place, should line up in a large assembly hall and face the relatives of the dead who perished on September 11.

We can debate until the cows come home what the CIA and the FBI should have done, where the government failed, and what the president ought to do now. The fact is, without the Immigration Act of 1965, without the agenda people who seized it for their insane designs, the twin towers, and those who perished that day, would still be with us.