One of the more interesting arguments in favor of further restricting lower-skilled immigration comes from the prolific pen of Reihan Salam. His piece is worth reading in its entirety, especially his emphasis on the importance of the melting-pot metaphor, a far better approach to the ideal of assimilation than the salad bowl or other concepts. Salam understates the amount of “togetherness” Americans feel and the degree to which immigrants and their descendants rapidly adopt American identity, as well as exaggerating the benefits of such togetherness. But my disagreement lies elsewhere.
The big take away from Salam’s piece is that a constant flow of lower-skilled immigrants into the United States slows the economic and cultural assimilation of that immigrant group. As a result, further restricting low-skilled immigration would aid in the assimilation of current immigrants who are settled here. As he wrote, “the melting and fusing of different ethnic groups is essential to building a more cohesive and human society, and that slowing down immigration would help this process along.”
His conclusion rests on two points.