A grim lesson of history for Americans

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Years ago, on a lonely, sandy stretch of Florida’s Atlantic coast, I happened across the sign above.

That sign conveyed—still conveys, to those who bother to read it—an amazing fact that most Americans have forgotten or more likely never learned: The Spanish were the first major European conquerors of the land that now makes up the United States. Along with their takings further south they eventually possessed, at least nominally, much of what is now the US southeast, Gulf coast, and southwest, including Florida, Texas, and California. When English settlers arrived to set up their Jamestown colony near the mouth of Chesapeake Bay in 1606, they were not far from the northernmost extent of existing Spanish territory.

What happened to the Spanish in America? Where are they now? Well, as one-fifth of the current US population might say, “you’re looking at ’em.” Hispanics are the largest non-white ethnic group in the country.

There’s a serious history lesson here.

With a sequence of wars and defeats starting in the late 1500s, the Spanish were increasingly unable to defend their empire. In North America their possessions were taken from them first by the English and later by Americans (and Texans). If they’d really wanted—and some did want this—Americans could have driven the Spanish from all of Latin America and the Caribbean.

Instead, Americans—people who in the mid-1800s were mostly of English and other Northern European stock—became in historical terms rather easygoing with respect to their southern competitors. Despite crushing victories in the Mexican-American War they declined to take Mexico or even push further than the Rio Grande. And although they maintained strong legal restrictions on immigration from south of the border for the next century or so, they began relaxing those immigration laws starting in the mid-1960s, in the virtuous spirit of the Civil Rights era. Thus they effectively began allowing the Spanish ethno-cultural influence back into the US, mostly in the form of Mexicans, a diverse mix of Spanish and indigenous Mesoamerican.

Mexicans and other Latin Americans have of course flooded across the border since the 1960s. For cultural reasons and because they are poorer and less educated on average, they also have had much higher birthrates within the country than Americans of Northern European descent. Incredibly, the latter since the 1970s have disadvantaged themselves further by mandating various hiring and college-admissions preferences in favor of Hispanic-Americans and other minorities. In some states taxpayers must now even subsidize college and medical costs of the mostly Hispanic immigrants who are in the US illegally.

Unsurprisingly, given these clear invitations and opportunities to re-occupy US territory, the number of Hispanics living in the country has soared from just a few million in 1960 to somewhere around 60-70 million now. Assuming the US retains its democratic system, in which politicians need those tens of millions of votes, the Hispanic position is now secure—indeed Hispanics are headed for political dominance in a few generations, if Asians don’t beat them to it.

The intelligent takeaway from this isn’t that “demography is destiny.” The demographic trend that now dooms Northern European-American dominance in the US and has already helped disrupt their traditional culture was not at all inevitable. It was entirely self-inflicted.

People will argue over the reasons for this cultural suicide. But certainly they include a short-sighted desire for cheap labor and faster GDP growth, a general shift towards more feminine, sympathy-driven policymaking, a related guilt over the successes and wealth of the US pre-1965, and a desire by Democratic politicians for a new welfare-loving bloc of voters.

Looking back, it seems that hardly anyone warned Americans about the fate they were creating for themselves. Of course, those who dared to do so were mostly marginalized as racists, white supremacists, etc. The rising new religion of progressivism convinced Americans (or bullied them into accepting without protest) that a strong sense of ethnic and cultural identity is essential for Hispanics and other non-whites, but impermissible for whites due to their past sins.

Where are the ancient Romans? Where are the ancient Greeks? Where are the noble Indians who once freely roamed the American forests and plains? All mostly extinct now, having—for one reason or another—lost their edge, lost their drive to survive. That’s a grim, Darwinian lesson of history that Americans will now learn too late, if they ever learn it.