Jeffrey Kaye , a freelance journalist and special correspondent for The PBS NewsHour , subtitled his book How Coyote Capitalism Fuels Global Immigration. It's a book that goes way beyond what I'm used to reading in news stories or op-ed pieces about Arizona's new law . Kaye looks at immigration around the world, not just in America. He frequently puts today's stories in historical context. Most of all, he looks at business practices and government policies that either entice or drive people to leave their homes in search of a better life.
There's a lot of data in the book, and Publishers Weekly called it "a dense read." It isn't, really -- Kaye injects enough stories and interviews to keep eyes from glazing over. If I sometimes found it hard going, it was because each chapter examines a different facet of immigration, and sometimes the evidence seems to lead to contradictory conclusions. In the final chapter Kaye ties things together and clearly states his own views, though he offers no policy recommendations. Since it majors on information, not advocacy, Moving Millions will probably appeal more to wonks than to activists.
But back to this morning's news stories, and how Kaye helped me understand them:
Interestingly, some companies are trying to have it both ways. According to one Arizona politician quoted in the book, "Many of the companies that made a profit off the backs of migrant workers were the same companies donating money to anti-immigration proponents." See my April 29 post in which I suggest that many businesses want immigrants here, but they want them scared. They are so much easier to exploit when they're terrified of being sent home.
LaVonne Neff is an amateur theologian and cook; lover of language and travel; wife, mother, grandmother, godmother, dogmother; perpetual student, constant reader, and Christian contrarian. She blogs at Lively Dust .