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Suppose you live in a country, which although a western democracy, has significant fetters on freedom (anti-discrimination, equal opportunity [affirmative action] laws etc). It is a welfare state, and also a 'nanny state' where there are all kinds of laws imposed on individuals that you would not find in an objectivist political system. Laws are routinely passed where individual rights are constrained to suit particular ideologies.

If you think that an influx of immigrants from a certain culture, and that culture's subsequent increasing social and political power will lead to further deterioration of your individual freedom, are you justified in opposing entry to members of that culture into your country?

I don't think this problem would arise in an objectivist government (as I understand it), as the government would be impotent to coerce the individual. But given the system as it is, isn't it in my rational self interest to try to keep threats to my liberty off the seat of power?

asked Dec 08 '12 at 19:33

Daniel's gravatar image



There is a bit of a "package deal" in the premise here. You are making a tacit assumption that every individual that hails from a particular culture ipso facto subscribes to some collectivist value you don't like. By blanket opposition to any immigration from an evil communist culture like Russia, you'd have eliminated Ayn Rand. Your question also seems to allude (maybe I am wrong) to "moochers" being imported. While this is a real issue, I am afraid that mooching spans all cultures and all creeds. Some of the hardest working people I know are Mexican illegals. Of course some aren't.

(Dec 13 '12 at 10:03) Danneskjold_repo Danneskjold_repo's gravatar image

The context of a mixed economy certainly complicates what would otherwise be a far simpler issue to resolve. In addition to the complications already mentioned, there is another big one today: whether or not the U.S. is already in a de facto war with militant Islamic terrorists and nations who sponsor them, and whether or not Islamic immigrants endorse and support Islam's militancy. A wartime context is very different from a peacetime one.

Also, "immigration of a culture" cannot be allowed to infringe individual rights. Any imported "culture" that attempts to do that should be stopped. No matter what the practices and customs in their native countries may have been, immigrants into a free country will need to respect the individual rights of others.

answered Dec 13 '12 at 16:13

Ideas%20for%20Life's gravatar image

Ideas for Life ♦

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Asked: Dec 08 '12 at 19:33

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Last updated: Dec 13 '12 at 16:13