Memo #4: Immigration QuotasNiall JanneyQuestion: Should market mechanisms play a role in allocating responsibilities for taking in refugees?In Cavallero’s policy proposal, I felt two ethical concerns come into conflict. On one hand, we have a desire to aid the large group of refugees from all over the world who were unlucky enough to be born into a developing nation in conflict. Yet we also value the stability and integrity of our own society and thus cannot envision opening our borders to all. Xenophobia, self-interest, and practical considerations plague the search for a viable approach to refugee relief. Balancing individual moral obligations toward humanity with the obligations due to ones own nation creates a seemingly impassable ethical obstacle. Allowing market mechanisms to dictate refugee and immigrant policy does not solve these ethical issues—it avoids them altogether. Cavellero offers two morally lazy policy prescriptions that trouble me. The first is a willingness to free up national borders.
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