Some of the bloggers who visit this site believe that multiculturalism in a demographic sense is a failed project. Just because immigration has been a part of humanity since the dawn of time, some insist that a country with lots of immigrants become failed states. As examples they use countries such as the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda and others to drive home their argument.
It would be important to point out that while the former Yugoslavia ended up in ethnic civil war, the outlandish conflict was not brought on by immigrants that moved their. The civil war was created by the inhabitants of that country.
Moreover, if one wants to look at how people can be taught to function successfully in a new society, one has only to look at North and South America, Even though everyone knows about countries such as Canada and the United States, we hear very little about nations such as Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay.
Even though Argentina has had a violent history, the immigrants that moved there in the early twentieth century comprised as much as 49.4% of the population of Buenos Aires. In Uruguay, there were also high number of immigrants in relation to the total population. Brazil also promoted European immigration to help “whiten” the population from the high amount of blacks.
Even though Uruguay had a high number of immigrants, which totalled about 30% of the population by 1900, the country became one of the first welfare states in the world in the 1910s. It even adopted a secular constitution in 1919.
How is it possible that a country like Uruguay with such a high amount of immigrants could have built one of the most successful societies in the world in the beginning of the last century?
Immigration was also a driving force in Argentina that transformed the country. However, the failure of the country to become a successful nation in the same league as Canada and Australia is not due to immigration but the political and economic system.
And then there is Brazil, the giant of Latin America. Brazil also attracted large flows of immigrants in the end of the nineteenth and early twentieth century. If one looks at the country, it is a mosaic of people from different ethnic and cultural background. Even so, Brazil never suffered civil wars nor ruinous political infighting that characterized many newly independent Spanish-American countries.
Yes, there are many examples of countries that have succeeded in turning immigration into a force of progress.
Those countries that do not understand the strengths and richness of diversity will be doomed to geriatric wards and economic hardships too painful to describe in words.