Friday, 14 March 2014

No community has ever actively chosen to become an “immigrant community”

No city or municipality has ever willingly chosen to become an immigrant community. I find that interesting. There are however a few examples of communities that have actively decided to embrace their conceptuality as an immigrant community. However, they all have done so posterior to finding themselves in an altered demographic situation where they simply had to conclude the obvious.  
The situation has led the communities to stand between two choices: either counter the situation and reduce the proportion of immigrant residents, or embrace and develop the situation as well as become better at introducing those who have and those who are on their way of becoming immigrants. Naturally, they have gone with the second option, although initially nobody has actually made this kind of active choice before. Nobody has stood there with two immigrants and thought: “Alas, it is better to be a community with cultural plurality than a feeble-minded one so let us bring people over here from all over the world!”

It is important to keep that in mind when we hear politicians and officials glorify immigration in their communities/municipalities. They are absolutely right in that it is something to glorify – but the fact remains that there are currently no examples of homogenous communities that have actively chosen to become “immigrant dense”. There is also the question of whether keeping this in mind is important or not, but it is interesting nonetheless.

How many communities would for instance take the “trouble” necessary in order to become a culturally diverse municipality? How many would provide the plurality required in order to achieve excellence and become something special? So far, all of those who have had the option, have chosen mediocrity instead of defiance and brilliance.