Data presented by Pew Social Trends suggests that immigrants are strongly assimilated by the second generation. While first-generation immigrants (the children of migrants) often do worse on measures of economic security, second-generation immigrants (their grandchildren) are essentially indistinguishable from the general population. They’re also more likely to identify as a “typical American.”
These data should calm the fears of people who think that high fertility rates among immigrants will harm the country by creating a “dependent” underclass or a dangerous population of non-patriots.Lisa Wade is a professor of sociology at Occidental College and the co-author of Gender: Ideas, Interactions, Institutions. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook.