My theory is that while the child of well-off immigrants who wins the science fair tells us exactly what we want to hear about ourselves, the one who doesn't have enough to eat is a rebuke: a reminder that rags-to-riches stories delight and inspire us precisely because they are so rare. The fact that Sergey Brin, the celebrated cofounder of Google, was born in Russia (to parents who were accomplished scholars) is a feel-good story. The fact that 70 percent of Hispanic infants in America are born to mothers with a high school diploma or less, most of whom are either in or near poverty, is a feel-bad story.
- From Melting Pot or Civil War?: A Son of Immigrants Makes the Case Against Open Borders by Reihan Salam