I am the Citadel professor who moderated the discussion on immigration, and while I appreciate the interest that the City Paper has taken in this issue of national importance, Mr. Bowers’ article is misleading.
First, there were a variety of opinions expressed by the crowd, some not mentioned in the article. For instance, one Citadel professor present talked about her own immigrant past and worried about discrimination that some immigrants suffer. A cadet challenged the assertion (not Hoffman’s) that Hispanic immigrants lag in English-language acquisition by citing studies that show English language proficiency increases among Latinos over the second and third generations. Another Citadel professor worried that too much emphasis was being placed on granting legal status to immigrants with high levels of education at the expense of those with lower levels of education, all for economic reasons.
Second, Mr. Bowers’ article leaves out several points that Hoffman made in the public discussion. For instance, Hoffman talked about declining fertility rates in economically-advanced countries and how this is a principal driver of the need for immigration. He mentioned the need to prioritize economic skills that the US economy needs in granting legal status to immigrants. He further mentioned the global nature of the immigration challenge. For instance, England has nearly as high of a percentage of its population that is foreign-born today as that seen in the US.
None of this information appears in the article. The City Paper should make an effort to maintain high journalistic standards.
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