Tools for Discussions

Immigrants and Boomers

Written by Simon  
Sunday, 02 December 2007
Book Review
Immigrants and Boomers By Dowell Myers

Russell Sage Foundation, 2007

“Two highly regarded demographers have already proclaimed that the nations recent wave of immigration has crested.”

I heard Professor Myers talk at the Huntington Library about a year ago and have been eagerly awaiting his book. Since he is a demographer at USC he looks at the immigration issue from a demographers point of view and he concludes that if the baby boomers want to have someone to buy their houses and care for them when they are 75 they had better keep letting in immigrants and spend more now to educate and acculturate them.
The book has great graphs and much new data about the wave of immigrants from Latin America. He shows how the fear of immigration is based on a flawed snapshot of the past and that there is much to be hopeful about.
“The nation needs immigrants to fill our needs, not simply in today’s world, where most citizens and experts have looked for their answers, but especially in tomorrow’s.”
People who argue in favor of immigration and an amnesty will find that Immigrants and Boomers give them some very good economic and cultural arguments to support their view. Those who oppose immigration and amnesty may be swayed by the arguments about the economic needs of the baby boomers. This is an important book because it presents new data that can reduce some of the jingoistic fear of immigrants.