Tuesday, August 14, 2007


The downside of diversity

Pundits and politicians never tire of telling us that America is "strong" because of its diversity. A massive new study has concluded just the opposite.

Harvard political scientist Robert Putnam interviewed 30,000 people across the United States and found that in diverse communities, people are less likely to vote, volunteer, give money to charity, and work on community projects.

If Putnam's study had come to an opposite conclusion, i.e., high levels of community spirit in diverse areas, I'm sure his study would have been front-page news in every newspaper in the country.

This is very interesting:

"The study comes at a time when the future of the American melting pot is the focus of intense political debate, from immigration to race-based admissions to schools, and it poses challenges to advocates on all sides of the issues. The study is already being cited by some conservatives as proof of the harm large-scale immigration causes to the nation's social fabric. But with demographic trends already pushing the nation inexorably toward greater diversity, the real question may yet lie ahead: how to handle the unsettling social changes that Putnam's research predicts."

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