Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Michael Barone

Today on my KMOX show, I talked immigration with Michael Barone, senior writer at US News & World Report and author of "The New Americans: How The Melting Pot Can Work Again."

Barone contends that assimilation has to be the basis of any immigration policy, which is why he's opposed to programs like bilingual education. I challenged him on whether assimilation can be forced by the government, or happens naturally over time. We also discussed immigrant enclaves and communities that show no interest in assimilating, and the problems that can cause.

He explained how the experiences of Latinos and Asians today mirror those of Italians and Jews a century ago, and what he thinks of cities (like Valley Park) that have passed English-only legislation. I also asked him about the proposed Guest Worker program and other methods to make illegals part of the American system.

Listen to the conversation here.