We Could’ve Had a Two-fer

NBC reported yesterday that Minnesota health officials have requested an additional $5 million appropriation to deal with an “extraordinarily expensive” measles outbreak among the state’s Somali population, a group which has largely refused measles vaccinations for their children in recent years.

Why the great frozen Upper Midwest, colonized in the 19th century mainly by pioneers of German and Viking stock, is now home to a substantial population of refugees and transplants from the semi-tropical Horn of Africa is in some fundamental sense mysterious. Yes, yes, I know the State Department has run refugee resettlement rackets from time to time in the past, and that do-gooder Lutheran organizations with their roots in the Upper Midwest have participated heavily in these schemes. But taking a step back and viewing the picture from a Martian visitor’s perspective it just seems unbearably odd. Minnesota has gone from 94.4% non-Hispanic white in 1990 to 81.0% non-Hispanic white in 2015, and there hasn’t even been an intervening war, invasion or cataclysm to account for this sudden and massive population shift. Even the very climate seems ideally suited to people with an ancestry within spitting distance of the Polar Circle, while tortuously harsh to those whose roots are in warmer climes. Yet here were are.  The locals just let it happen.

They shouldn’t have, of course.

Had the leaders of Minnesota been wise enough, a generation ago, to “just say no” to absurd migration schemes, they would have avoided the importation of a hostile, alien population which actively resists fundamental norms of civilized behavior such as giving basic vaccinations to children. (And note well that the measles vaccination has been part of the “holy trinity” of basic childhood vaccinations for generations. Even as far back as the early 1980s, the classical vaccine schedule was a simple three-legged stool: Trivalent DTP (diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis), trivalent MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) and monovalent oral polio — you could write it all down on the back of a 3×5 index card.)

And had Minnesota saved themselves the trouble of hosting an extremely foreign population of low-achieving Somalis who will never integrate socially, they would have also saved themselves $5 million dollars in unexpected public health costs. That sum is slightly more than the cost of one mile of 18 foot tall fencing on the Mexican border, or slightly less than the cost of one mile of concrete wall of the type President Trump has spoken about so often.

We could have had less disease and more wall for the same money, had this country adopted saner migration policies over the past generation, but we blew the chance at an easy two-fer. So sad.

 

 

 

 

 

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