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Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Reader's Diary #2114- Bryan Caplan (writer), Zach Weinersmith (artist): Open Borders

There's a blurb written by Ryan North on the back of Open Borders: The Science and Ethics of Immigration that reads, "This is not a book written to applaud pro-immigration people or to shame those who are against it" that might suggest that Bryan Caplan doesn't take a stance on the issue. To be absolutely clear, this book is VERY pro-immigration.

I'd have considered myself pro-immigration even before starting the book, but to be honest, hadn't put a great deal of thought in it besides considering those against it to be mostly racist. I certainly never thought about the possibility of fully open borders.

Thankfully Caplan does a wonderful job of defining open borders and arguing the case for them. It's accessible, smart, and even funny at times, though he treats the subject with the respect and depth it needs. It's strongest when he addresses the concerns of naysayers, showing in most cases how their fears are unfounded.

One issue though that I wished he addressed: while he provides a lot of examples of how more open immigration has been good for the world, I found myself thinking about the indigenous people of North America and how the influx of Europeans way back in the day has definitely not been a great benefit.

Nonetheless, it's a very thought-provoking and well-researched book.

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