This piece at the Library of Law and Liberty is a nuanced take on the mass immigration from impoverished countries currently being experienced by most of the West. Dalrymple explores the difficult connection between one’s personal experience and public policy. After a touching description of the immigrants who care for his mother-in-law (“they are extremely good people, whose warmth, kindness, humanity and mannerliness were obvious on first acquaintance”), he nevertheless wonders whether such immigration is justified, and acknowledges that the answer to the one question does not necessarily provide the answer to the other:
1. I sympathize personally with the immigrants;
2. I like the majority of those whom I have met;
3. I recognize that, along with many others, I benefit from their presence, though I do not know precisely what the size of that presence ought to be;
4. I do not know what their overall economic effect is;
5. I do not want to see my society changed irreversibly by their uncontrolled influx.