Critical mass and open borders are not terms you might expect to see paired as they are here. After all, critical mass is a term customarily related to nuclear bombs. No! I am not proposing nuking the borders or caravans. I am, however, about to argue the situation at the border is a societal problem that could be as devastating in some ways as nuclear war.
If you are still reading, there are likely one of two reasons. First, you may be wanting to see if I can support my last statement. Second, you are waiting to see how big a fool or nut case I am. Either way, thanks for sticking around.
At one time, I could assume most people reading this would understand the term critical mass. Unfortunately, that is not the case today. Whether one blames the lack of knowledge on changes in educational emphasis or the amount of time students today spend on social media, an understanding of science is not a high priority in the modern world.
The term critical mass came from the world of physics and was first used, according to one source, in 1945. At that point, it referred to the amount of nuclear material needed to begin the process of nuclear fission. Then, scientists were talking about the tipping point beyond which an atomic reaction became uncontrollable. In other words, when an atomic bomb might go boom. In less explosive terms, it is the point at which one kind of matter or another overcomes the constraints placed upon it by other forces.
For instance, think of a dam, levee, waterway or flood control channel. Anyone living near or downstream from something of this nature should understand they are designed to control a particular kind of matter; water. The residents in those areas should also understand the possibility of the water achieving critical mass is real. If that happens, the results can be catastrophic.
A dam can fail, the levee can break, or the flood channel can overflow. The result, as many discovered during Hurricane Harvey and the massive flooding in other parts of the country this past winter, can be devastating.
Even if the dam or other barrier is not allowed to fail, the necessity of keeping the amount of water below the point of critical mass can wreak havoc. Just ask the folks living downstream from the Lake Conroe dam outside of Houston. There, officials were forced to open floodgates in the dam to avoid it collapsing due to the mass of water behind it.
So, you say, what do nuclear material or water have to do with the border? I am so glad you asked.
In their natural state, uranium and water are merely part of the environment in which we live. Both can be dangerous in some circumstances, but, for the most part, every human on this planet is exposed to these elements daily, with no ill effects. They are only dangerous under specific circumstances, concentrations or amounts (masses), which brings me back to the border.
Immigration, legal, illegal, intentional, accidental, or whatever, is not necessarily dangerous in the short term. However, as with water and uranium, as the mass (of immigrants) increases the more unstable the situation (society) can become.
Think back to the question of the water behind a dam. The dam has no problem holding the water back daily. Even when it rains for a few days, most such barriers continue to function normally. The problem arises when a deluge comes and continues. Eventually, water will need to be released in quantities so large homes, and land below the dam are endangered or damaged. Worse, in spite of the efforts to control the mass, the dam may collapse, and everything below it is swept away.
As with any simile or allegory, the water and uranium comparison begins to break down at some point. The border, walled or otherwise, is not a dam. The immigrants are not water or nuclear material. On the other hand, the impact the immigrants will eventually have on the United States unless something is done will be just as damaging to the economy, society, and to the lives of all who live in this country as flood waters and explosions are to the physical world.
Critical mass as it applies to immigration will be when the number of people entering the country, legally or illegally, is so high, they can lawfully or unlawfully control the civil processes driving society. Public school systems and publicly supported health care are already challenged by the needs of the resident population. Adding hundreds of thousands, possibly millions, of immigrants who, in many cases, cannot support themselves to the mix will make the challenges even more significant.
Yes, the country as it exists today would not exist if it had not been for immigration. From the original immigrants to those forced to immigrate against their will to those who fled the horrors of two world wars, immigrants played an integral part in the development of the United States. With that said, believing current and future immigration will play a similar role in the country is unrealistic.
In past generations, immigrants could be self-sufficient much more quickly than today. A farmer from Russia, a cobbler from Europe, a seamstress from France, a baker from Germany, a butcher from Poland, or an artisan from Spain could find work or start a business. The country was growing, needs were expanding, and land was plentiful. From sharecroppers to wheelwrights, it was possible for an immigrant to provide for a family, and survive. Today that is not the case.
Today, immigrants and refugees can find themselves dependent on government and charitable support for survival. As more and more arrive, the number depending on government assistance becomes greater. At some point, the socio-economic imbalance will overwhelm the systems, and implosion will occur.
At that point, as with the dam simile, it will make little difference which side of the issue one finds him or herself. Chaos and disaster will be just one mistake, one unexpected problem away.
© oneoldcop.com – 2019