On Knowing Your Enemy.
Ryan Sager writes:
One finds that the Southwest and Texas are quite favorably disposed toward immigrants, while the better part of the South is bursting with hostility.As Sager notes, the clear implication here is that people with more exposure to immigrants seem less hostile to them. Of the states above (see Table 4), Alabama ranks 44th in percentage of immigrants in its population, Arkansas 42nd, Mississippi 49th, and South Carolina 45th.
Back in December of 2005, Survey USA tracked views on immigration in all 50 states. In West Virginia, 60 percent of respondents agreed that "immigrants take jobs away from Americans." The picture was the same throughout most of the South: In Alabama, 56 percent agreed, Arkansas 53 percent, Mississippi 53 percent, South Carolina 53 percent.
Meanwhile, only 33 percent in New Mexico agreed that immigrants take away American jobs. In Arizona it was 42 percent, Colorado 44 percent, Nevada 44 percent and California 30 percent.
New Mexico, meanwhile, ranks 19th, Arizona ranks 7th, Colorado 11th, Nevada 5th, and California 1st.
Amazing how interaction with the loathed immigrant tends to make people less spiteful toward him, eh?
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I'm not surprised. Bigotry and ignorance often go together.