Pure genius, I tell you. With an estimated half a million illegal immigrants residing in Arizona according to the Pew Hispanic Center, questions are being raised about what this means for the United States and its national identity. But according to Newsweek contributing editor Eleanor Clift, it's a "happy" thing with lots of upside.
On the May 2 airing of "The McLaughlin Group," show moderator John McLaughlin raised the issue about the country's identity, particularly when it comes to English as the United States' primary language.
"The bedrock is national identity," McLaughlin said. "If the national identity suffers by reason of multiple languages, then the bedrock of our society, which is our identity, being an American is an American. English preserves that."
MSNBC political contributor and "McLaughlin Group" panelist Pat Buchanan explained the country has to decide if it wants to have one distinct culture, or if the country wants to be "multi-cultural." However, with those 500,000 illegal aliens residing in Arizona, Buchanan raised the point that population is now larger than the number of personnel in the U.S. Army, which constitutes an invasion.
"It's very true," Buchanan said. "Look, this is one of the great arguments we've got. Are we a multi-cultural country or do we have an American culture to which we all contribute. And I think, John if we don't have that one culture, we're going to wind up vulcanized. But one point - there are as many illegal aliens in Arizona as there are soldiers in the Army of the United States. That is an invasion."
While the thought of an invasion might seem threatening, Eleanor Clift proclaimed it to be a "happy invasion," with lots of upsides.
"It's a happy invasion for most people in this country," Clift proclaimed. "[W]e love the diversity of food. We have it -- English is the language of commerce. People who come here want to learn our language. There is a problem with human smuggling and with drug smuggling, but the vast majority of Mexicans, and that's who we're talking about who come here, come here to work, and they are terrified and keep their heads down. And they commit far fewer crimes than other groups."
Ultimately, who is to blame? According to Clift, it's corporate America.
"Corporate America has welcomed these people with open arms," Clift said.