Jeb Bush: “We should not have a multicultural society”

Jeb “Act of Love” Bush has a hot new take on immigration and assimilation:

Responding to a question about how he plans to help refugees that are already in the United States become part of American society, Bush channeled his inner Golden Dawn to insinuate that refugees who don’t ditch their culture to become American aren’t doing it right, going on to warn that America is “creeping toward multiculturalism.”

As Bush said, coming dangerously close to name-checking the so-called “no-go zones” that conservatives have warned constitute de-facto Muslim countries within our borders:

We should not have a multicultural society…When you create pockets of isolation, and in some cases, the assimilation process has been retarded, it’s wrong. It limits people’s aspirations.

Bush went on to say that refugees must learn English, and that our national identity is defined by “a set of values that people share” rather than race.

That much is all well and good, except for the implication that refugees don’t already understand these concepts. In reality, practically everyone coming to this country from abroad feels it’s important to learn English. What’s more, that “set of values” Bush is so concerned refugees embrace includes — you guessed it — multiculturalism!

But don’t tell that to the voters Bush has been hemorrhaging to Donald Trump — voters who have a very particular idea of what it means to be an American. According to a recent survey from Public Policy Polling, only 49% of Iowa Republicans believe that Islam should be legal in the United States; 30% think it should be outlawed. Given how much of the Republican Party’s discussion regarding the Syrian refugee crisis is over whether we can trust these refugees — how do we know they aren’t terrorists??? — Bush has been left to abandon his pretense of moderation in favor of winking and nodding to some of the West’s most racist impulses.

But given how well that kind of faux-Trumpism worked out for Scott Walker, one has to wonder what Jeb thinks he’s accomplishing in all of this. He gets no points for being an intellectual Donald; that’s an oxymoron. If anything, he cuts away at the media narrative he’s helped create for himself that he is somehow more moderate and sensible than any of his opponents.

For a guy the GOP establishment assumes is going to be the next president of the United States, this guy is remarkably bad at politics.

Jon Green graduated from Kenyon College with a B.A. in Political Science and high honors in Political Cognition. He worked as a field organizer for Congressman Tom Perriello in 2010 and a Regional Field Director for President Obama's re-election campaign in 2012. Jon writes on a number of topics, but pays especially close attention to elections, religion and political cognition. Follow him on Twitter at @_Jon_Green, and on Google+. .

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25 Responses to “Jeb Bush: “We should not have a multicultural society””

  1. 1nancy2 says:

    Oh, how I detest Jeb!BUSH. He looks like Mommy and I could not stand her either. The entire, hideous clan is a bane on the world. No more Bush’s, no more Clinton’s.

  2. Texon says:

    Only in America can being multilingual be considered wrong. People that can speak more than a single language should be admired, but with money buying our opinions it appears we are headed into the dark ages again.

  3. Hue-Man says:

    I live in a country where multi-culturalism is official government policy! At a practical level, I don’t think there is much difference between the U.S. and Canada but the results are dramatically different.

    “About two-thirds of Canadians feel that immigration is a key positive feature of their country.”

    “The major political parties in Canada all court immigrants’ votes, and unlike many countries in Europe, there are no anti-immigrant parties on the fringes of the political mainstream receiving public support.”

  4. 2karmanot says:

    Don’t forget possum stew and collards!

  5. 2karmanot says:

    Same. My grandparents were Irish immigrants escaping English genocide.

  6. MoonDragon says:

    If we never let another immigrant into this nation, going only on the prevailing practices of the various sections of the nation that boast of lineage going back to The Founders (blessed be their names) and including the peoples we absorbed through territorial acquisitions (“peaceful” or otherwise) we have a multicultural society. The divergence of culture between bred in the bone Yankee New Englanders (of Puritan extraction) and loud and proud Southerners (of a blend of Scots-Irish trouble makers and quasi-aristocratic plantation entrepreneurs) is at least as great as between either of those and Latin/Eastern European/Asian cultures or, for that matter, the Creole/Cajun cultures of the Mississippi delta. Does Jeb wish to homogenize regional “American” cultures out of existence? Of course, I’m only asking him about regional white cultures. We already know that those who practice indigenous cultures and cultures that derive from black slave and African traditional practices should be assimilated into “real” American culture as well.

  7. Bill_Perdue says:

    It’s like a replay of Rome and Italy when Roman imperialism brought hundreds of thousands in to do the work. Romans sneer at them and resisted any change in their own culture. Then came Spartacus.

    This time Spartacus will win.

  8. Bill_Perdue says:

    “We should not have a multicultural society”. Apparently Obama thinks the same thing because he deported over two million Latino/Latina workers, destroying their lives and livelihoods and those who depended on them. His policies are racist as Jebyas.

    Clinton would likely continue that in spite of he lies about embracing immigrant rights. And we know the BS also has a racist and chauvinist position on immigration. BS’s ideas about immigration are racist and chauvinist. “WASHINGTON, D.C. — Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders outlined his immigration reform plan Thursday, saying he would support comprehensive immigration reform and go further than President Barack Obama to protect undocumented immigrants already in the United States. But when it comes to allowing new immigrants into the country, Sanders reiterated his position that opening the border would hurt employment and wages.

    “But here’s where I do have concerns,” he continued. “There is a reason why Wall Street and all of corporate America likes immigration reform, and it is not, in my view, that they’re staying up nights worrying about undocumented workers in this country. What I think they are interested in is seeing a process by which we can bring low-wage labor of all levels into this country to depress wages for Americans, and I strongly disagree with that.”

  9. Zorba says:

    Me, too. My parents and I were born here, but I spoke Greek before I spoke English, because my great-grandmother lived with us, and she didn’t speak much English.
    And I went to “Greek school” when I was a kid, two days a week (after “regular” school) to learn to read and write proper Greek.
    I guess my parents and grandparents didn’t do such a bad job, though. My brothers and I all have college degrees, and advanced degrees, as well (same as most of my cousins), we are all doing well, but we consider ourselves proud Greek-Americans.
    Well, no more gyros, baklava, or any other Greek food for Jeb Bush. ;-)

  10. lynchie says:

    Grew up in Canada which is bilingual. Didn’t get there without hiccups mostly from old white folks who refused change. My kids bilingual from kindergarten both have great jobs, both have Master’s degrees. One lives outside of Paris and the other is the head of IT at major university. speaking only english is why america does not fit into the world anymore. If we want to get along with other countries we need to know more about each other. america can no longer bully the world into our way of thinking and it is scaring the shit out of the right cause they are being left behind.

  11. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    Not North America, so I doubt that Shrub.2 would approve.

  12. BeccaM says:

    Potatoes came from the Americas. Just sayin’.

  13. BeccaM says:

    Naked appeals to blatant xenophobia, with more than a hint of cultural imperialism — because if society is to be homogenized, one can’t help but ask, “Whose culture defines the standard?”

    From the current rancid crop of GOP candidates, I think we know their preferred answer.

  14. nicho says:

    I grew up in an immigrant community. Many of my friend had parents who were first-generation Americans. I am third-generation. I current live in an immigrant community. Here’s how it went. Here’s how it goes.

    The first generation speaks their own language and a little English, depending on their age. Older folks tend to learn English not so much. The second generation speaks accented English and their family’s native language. By the third generation, they speak English as a native language and their family’s language maybe — sometimes maybe not or not that well, much to the chagrin of the grandparents. A lot depends on how tight-knit their ethnic community is.

    As a third-generation Mexican-American woman told me one day, “Oh, I only speak white-girl Spanish.”

    When I was a kid, we had three French schools and a Polish school in town, in addition to what were called the “Irish” schools. The kids learned their lessons in English in the morning and in French or Polish in the afternoon. Nobody had a problem with that.

    These xenophobic assholes need to fuck off. If I had kids, I would want them to speak five languages.

  15. Indigo says:

    Speaking as a long-time Florida resident, I said way back before Jeb said he was running that he can’t carry Florida. We know him way too well. He’s bad news. Do you suppose the party worthies get that now? Maybe not. Regardless, this latest classic dumb-drop pretty well handed Republican Florida to Pretty Boy Marco Rubio.

  16. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    Meat and potatoes? I would think foods such as maize, frybread, acorn bread, and buffalo stew would be more appropriate.

  17. Retarded is the perfect description of Texans and many Southerners in general.

    Their failure to assimilate to non-ignorant, non-racist America is certainly causing problems…

  18. FuzzyRabbit says:

    No more Chinese food. No more Thai food. No more Italian or Mexican food. Only meat and potatoes for dinner anymore, or else you are not a loyal American.

    By golly, we can make America great again if we get rid of the sinister influence of foreign languages. We’ll make American the only allowable language. We’re not going to allow any foreign languages like Spanish, or French or English.

  19. 2karmanot says:

    Poor little Jebbi, he’s become the Le Petite, Petite Shrub. What a dumbo……

  20. Indigo says:

    That ignorant New England Brahman doesn’t know wtf he’s talking about!

  21. Masrry Thomas says:

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  22. Bcre8ve says:

    Tell it to Oktoberfest.

  23. Quilla says:

    Wow. Just wow. Please tell me what “American” means?

    Come on, JEB! Get your head out of your assets and embrace the fact that ALL Americans are mutts. And damn proud of it.

  24. MoonDragon says:

    Shall we demand that people from the less developed states learn how to speak English properly both from a grammatical and pronunciation point of view? Shall we outlaw colloquial cuisines? And who, by the way, gets to decide, Ms. Youbetchamoosemama or, maybe, Ms. Linzie?

  25. lynchie says:

    Wow in one broad brush Jeb got rid of Italian Americans, Polish Americans, African Americans Irish Americans. etc., etc. What a dumb shit he is. Being an Irish American does not make you less loyal to America or a threat to the country. He is married to a Mexican American and Jeb also learned spanish that I guess disqualifies him to claim a pure white american heritage.

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