Immigration lessons for the U.S. from around the world
New citizens wave flags before being sworn in during a Naturalization Ceremony in October at the Statue of Liberty.
June 10th, 2012
10:41 AM ET

Immigration lessons for the U.S. from around the world

Fareed Zakaria looks at how the immigration systems work – and don't work – in Japan, Europe, Canada and the U.S. in the TV special: "Global Lessons: The GPS Roadmap for Making Immigration Work" which aired on CNN on Sunday, June 10. Watch on CNN International on Saturday, June 16, at 4 a.m. and 9 p.m. ET

Immigrants founded America hundreds of years ago, coming to the promised land in search of freedom and opportunity, in pursuit of the American dream.

Today, many Americans see immigrants as a danger to that dream.

They worry that immigrants are taking their jobs, using government services and changing the country's national identity. The average American believes that 39% of the U.S. population was born abroad. The real figure is 13%, still the highest level since 1920.

Related: How much do you know about U.S. immigration?

Immigration is divisive, a wedge issue in this election year. But most Americans (73%) agree that the government is doing a poor job of managing it.

So, how should the U.S. handle immigration? Does anyone else do it better? What can the U.S. learn from successes – and possible mistakes – from other countries? FULL POST

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Topics: Canada • Europe • Global Lessons • Immigration • Japan
June 10th, 2012
10:17 AM ET

A patchwork of state immigration laws

Fareed Zakaria looks at how the immigration systems work – and don't work – in Japan, Europe, Canada and the U.S. in the TV special: "Global Lessons: The GPS Roadmap for Making Immigration Work" on CNN at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday, June 10. Watch on CNN International on Saturday, June 16, at 4 a.m. and 9 p.m. ET

Editor's note: Allie Devine is an attorney, Republican and the former Kansas Secretary of Agriculture. She currently leads the Kansas Business Coalition, an advocacy group of business organizations and the state's Chamber of Commerce. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Allie Devine. Check out an opposing view

By Allie Devine, Special to CNN

According to the Ellis Island website, during the late 1800’s, “as long as an immigrant’s papers were in order and they were in reasonably good health, the Ellis Island inspection process would last approximately three to five hours.” In today’s information age, it only takes around 10 years.

Our country’s immigration policy is broken. It has long been ignored by Congress and over the past four years, states have unfortunately started taking the issue into their own hands. This new patchwork of immigration policy is troublesome for the nation as a whole. FULL POST

Topics: Global Lessons • Immigration
Why America needs immigrants
New citizens are sworn in during a ceremony in Washington, D.C.
June 8th, 2012
07:35 AM ET

Why America needs immigrants

Fareed Zakaria looks at how the immigration systems work – and don't work – in Japan, Europe, Canada and the U.S. in the TV special: "Global Lessons: The GPS Roadmap for Making Immigration Work" on CNN at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday, June 10. Watch on CNN International on Saturday, June 16, at 4 a.m. and 9 p.m. ET

Editor's note: Philippe Legrain is the author of "Immigrants: Your Country Needs Them" and "Aftershock: Reshaping the World Economy After the Crisis." Follow on Twitter @plegrain. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Philippe Legrain.

By Philippe Legrain, Special to CNN

It is no longer acceptable to discriminate against people on the basis of a whole range of characteristics that they happen to be born with, notably their gender, their race and their sexuality. So why is it still deemed acceptable to discriminate against people on the basis of where they happen to have been born?

The world is anything but flat: the biggest determinant of your life chances is not how talented you are or how hard you work, it is where you were born and who your parents are. FULL POST

June 7th, 2012
05:16 PM ET

How much do you know about U.S. immigrants?

Fareed Zakaria looks at how the immigration systems work – and don't work – in Japan, Europe, Canada and the U.S. in the TV special: "Global Lessons: The GPS Roadmap for Making Immigration Work" on CNN at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday, June 10. Watch on CNN International on Saturday, June 16, at 4 a.m. and 9 p.m. ET

By John Cookson, CNN

While the U.S. has historically and famously been a nation of immigrants, few know the details of how the U.S. brings in foreigners now.

How many become citizens each year? Where do they live in the U.S.? Which country or origin leads for new American citizens?

Here is what you need to know. FULL POST

Islam’s place in Europe
In May, counter-demonstrators, above, stand near police barricades as a far-right, anti-Islam political party protests outside a mosque in Germany.
June 7th, 2012
01:36 PM ET

Islam’s place in Europe

Fareed Zakaria looks at how the immigration systems work – and don't work – in Japan, Europe, Canada and the U.S. in the TV special: "Global Lessons: The GPS Roadmap for Making Immigration Work" on CNN at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday, June 10. Watch on CNN International on Saturday, June 16, at 4 a.m. and 9 p.m. ET

Editor's note: Jonathan Laurence is associate professor of political science at Boston College and a Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution. He is the author of "The Emancipation of Europe’s Muslims." The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Jonathan Laurence.

By Jonathan Laurence, Special to CNN

Last month saw a series of riots in Europe, not over the wobbly Euro, but instead over the integration of Muslim Europeans and immigrants. In Bonn, hundreds of German Muslims clashed with police in a violent reaction to a far-right political party’s anti-Muslim gathering. The angry young men who chanted “God is Great” while battling police in the streets have reignited the ongoing debate over Islam’s place in Europe, a debate which has risen to the top of many politicians’ concerns. The German president said in a newspaper interview that while German Muslims clearly “belong” to the country, it is less clear whether or not Islam does.

But something arguably much more meaningful, if less newsworthy, took place days later. Groups representing hundreds of thousands of German Muslims condemned the violence and called on constituents to fulfill the civic duty of voting in regional elections that month. FULL POST

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Topics: Europe • Global Lessons • Immigration • Islam
Will an immigration deadlock make the U.S. a second-rate nation?
June 7th, 2012
08:30 AM ET

Will an immigration deadlock make the U.S. a second-rate nation?

A prime-time special: "Global Lessons: The GPS Roadmap for Making Immigration Work" debuts on CNN at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday, June 10.

By Fareed Zakaria

As the American economy sags, the race for the presidency gets tighter - except in one dimension. Hispanic Americans continue to support Barack Obama by an astonishing 61%-to-27% margin. Were Obama to win, it might well be because of his attitudes on one issue: immigration. But it is an issue on which he will be unable to enact any of his preferences, let alone those policies that many Latinos support. The Republican Party has taken a tough stand on the topic. Democrats have their own bright lines. That means America's immigration system is likely to stay as it is right now - utterly broken.

We think of ourselves as the world's great immigrant society, and of course, for most of the country's history, that has been true. But something fascinating has happened over the past two decades. Other countries have been transforming themselves into immigrant societies, adopting many of America's best ideas and even improving on them. The result: the U.S. is not as exceptional as it once was, and its immigration advantage is lessening.

Read more at TIME.com about lessons the U.S. can learn from other countries

- Read all Fareed Zakaria's TIME columns

June 6th, 2012
03:07 PM ET

'The GPS Roadmap for Making Immigration Work'

Fareed Zakaria looks at how the immigration systems work – and don't work – in Japan, Europe, Canada and the U.S. in the TV special: "Global Lessons: The GPS Roadmap for Making Immigration Work" on CNN at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday, June 10. Watch on CNN International on Saturday, June 16, at 4 a.m. and 9 p.m. ET

Few topics are more provocative than immigration. In this special, I look around the world for insightful immigration policies in Japan, Europe, and Canada – and explore what the United States can learn from each.

America is an immigrant society. What I was struck by, though, was a lot of other countries have learned our tricks and bettered them.

So, did you know, for example, that Canada has more foreign-born nationals than we do? And Australia has more immigrants than we do? Those societies have become, in 10 or 15 years, genuinely pluralistic, diverse immigrant societies. And here's the kicker: They have figured out a way to do immigration right, where they take smart, hardworking, talented people whom their economy needs.

In the Sunday special, we look at these lessons. Also joining me are two thought leaders on immigration politics and policy – New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg (I-NY) and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach (R-KS).

More from Global Lessons: Immigration

What do you think? What can the U.S. learn from other countries' immigration policies? FULL POST

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