Posted by: bringitup | September 15, 2010

Multiculturalism and distrust in the US

I post this section taken from Wikipedia on Robert Davis Putnam’s research on multiculturalism, as it offers a very good explanation to why multiculturalism doesn’t work:

In recent years, Putnam has been engaged in a comprehensive study of the relationship between trust within communities and their ethnic diversity. His conclusion based on over 40 cases and 30 000 people within the United States is that, other things being equal, more diversity in a community has a correlation [expressed as a beta equal to 0.04 in a multiple regression analysis (see Putnam, 2007), to less trust both between and within ethnic groups. Although only a single study and limited to American data, it claims to put into question both contract theory andconflict theory in inter-ethnic relations. According to conflict theory, distrust between the ethnic groups will rise with diversity, but not within a group. According to contact theory, distrust will decline as members of different ethnic groups get to know and interact with each other. Putnam describes people of all races, sex and ages as “hunkering down” and going into their shells like a turtle. For example, he did not find any significant difference between 90 year olds and 30 year olds.

Low trust with high diversity not only affects ethnic groups, but is also associated with:

  • Lower confidence in local government, local leaders and the local news media.
  • Lower political efficacy – that is, confidence in one’s own influence.
  • Lower frequency of registering to vote, but more interest and knowledge about politics and more participation in protest marches and social reform groups.
  • Less expectation that others will cooperate to solve dilemmas of collective action (e.g., voluntary conservation to ease a water or energy shortage).
  • Less likelihood of working on a community project.
  • Less likelihood of giving to charity or volunteering.
  • Fewer close friends and confidants.
  • Less happiness and lower perceived quality of life.
  • More time spent watching television and more agreement that “television is my most important form of entertainment”.

The US has attempted, due to it’s history, to implement atleast a parallell African-American culture, but  I can safely say that it has failed: The black community doesn’t have any faith in the white community and vice versa.

One could argue that the US has many cultures, such as different Asian and Hispanic ones, but the fact is that these cultures and people relate much better to the Western culture of the USA, which also can be seen in GDP per capita figures where blacks even fall behind the new Hispanic communities.*

There isn’t any multicultural society in the world that is working, and the only thing a multicultural society leads to is more distrust. People might think of Singapore, but I wouldn’t focus on a small city state which on top of it all has got very strict legislation to force people to live along the very same line in society, hence leading to a monocultural society.

*With the knowledge of that Asian-Americans are doing gradually better financially than non-Hispanic whites, then should we see that Asian culture as superior? I will write more about this another time, but the answer to me is yes.

The new modern East-Asian culture that has been rising in the past decades clearly have aspects that are superior to the current Western culture. The same could be said for Jewish culture in Europe and America.

Those are the cultures that we should pick into our own culture and not from the weak, backwards and less constructive current Middle Eastern and African cultures that our politicians are trying to sell to us, with their talk about multiculturalism. Those cultures must modernize themselves to catch up with us, we’ve already moved past their stage and should never even think of taking a step back just to please them. There’s nothing to gain from that.

(other) Source:

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