Conservative optimists who claim that the arrival of millions of Latin Americans and orientals isn’t all bad, because after all they bring their family values with them, should consider the case of California, a state in which the “new immigration” has recently made whites a minority. Somehow, the arrival of the Third World hasn’t done away with Western corruptions: California State Legislation Protects Abortion Rights, and California 2nd Graders Taught to Accept Homosexuality, Cross-Dressing.
The problem, of course, is that a radically multiethnic and polyglot society can’t easily rule itself. In politics its constituent groups are less concerned with vindicating their particular moral outlook, which seems out of reach in any event, than with what is on offer and seems practically obtainable: material benefits and guarantees of equality. Further, the Third World brings with it not only family values but the habit of abstaining from public life. The consequence is that liberal elites are free to rule as they choose and you end up with a public order that looks rather like that contemplated by the South African constitution.