What's The Breaking Point At The Border? How much immigration should we allow into the United States? And who should be allowed in? We talk about it with conservative writer David Frum and the founder of "Define American," Jose Antonio Vargas.

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What's The Breaking Point At The Border?

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What's The Breaking Point At The Border?

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What's The Breaking Point At The Border?

What's The Breaking Point At The Border?

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/712341995/712394005" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

In a recent cover story for The Atlantic, writer David Frum argues that the political logjam on immigration has led to the radicalization of politics, and the rise of authoritarian ideas.

Too little immigration, and you freeze your country out of the modern world. Too much, or the wrong kind, and you overstress your social-insurance system—and possibly upend your democracy. Choose well, and you build a stronger, richer country for both newcomers and the long-settled. Choose badly, and you aggravate inequality and inflame intergroup hostility. How we choose will shape the future that will in its turn shape us.

He challenges the country to address the questions at the heart of the immigration debate: How many people should we let in to America? And who should those people be?

We talk with Frum about his piece.

We also speak with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Jose Antonio Vargas, who has written extensively about his experience as an undocumented immigrant to this country, and founded the media and culture organization Define American.

Here's part of what he wrote for The New York Times in 2011 about his life and career:

There are believed to be 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States. We're not always who you think we are. Some pick your strawberries or care for your children. Some are in high school or college. And some, it turns out, write news articles you might read. I grew up here. This is my home. Yet even though I think of myself as an American and consider America my country, my country doesn't think of me as one of its own.