Reviewing Tom Gjelten's new book for the Washington Post
Fifty years ago, the United States liberalized its immigration regime, doing away with the racist reforms of 1924, which sought to prevent the country from becoming more diverse. Remarkably, neither proponents nor critics of the 1965 reforms sought to increase the country's racial and ethnic diversity; on the contrary, both camps argued the changes would not have this effect.
For readers of American Nations: Gjelten's detailed case study of Fairfax County provides ample evidence that at least this corner of Tidewater is likely transforming into something that looks and sounds an awful lot like the Midlands, and Fairfax's experience is likely replicated across much of fast-growing northern Virginia.
My last review for the Post was of former U.S. Ambassador to Hungary Eleni Kounalakis's memoir of her years in Budapest, watching Hungary fall under the shadow of its autocratic leader, Viktor Orban (who I wrote about for Politicohere.)
I am an award-winning journalist and author of American Nations, American Character, Ocean's End, The Lobster Coast, and The Republic of Pirates. I'm a staffer at the Portland Press Herald, where I won a 2012 George Polk Award for my investigative reporting and was named a 2016 Pulitzer Prize finalist.