Salute to Chester A. Arthur!

Just in case you missed the big Chester A. Arthur celebration on President’s Day, a hero to bigoted nativist xenophobes everywhere:

The Arthur Administration enacted the first general Federal immigration law. Arthur approved a measure in 1882 excluding paupers, criminals, and lunatics. Congress suspended Chinese immigration for ten years, later making the restriction permanent.

Personally, I’m a Sinophile — they make great fireworks — but in a democratic polity, the majority rules. And who knows? Maybe if Hearst hadn’t ginned up fear of the Yellow Peril, we’d all be half-Chinese by now. (NTTAWWT.) Progressive tolerant types recoil in horror from restrictionist policies, but you liberals should think about this: If the Know-Nothings had had their way — excluding the Irish rabble and other such Papist scum — you’d have been spared Antonin Scalia, Sean Hannity and Bill O’Reilly.

I’m just sayin’ . . .

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