The Price of Intolerance

New York Times Editorial

Published: November 27, 2011 

It’s early yet for a full accounting of the economic damage Alabama has done to itself with its radical new immigration law.

Farmers can tally the cost of crops left to rot as workers flee. Governments can calculate the loss of revenues when taxpayers flee. It’s harder to measure the price of a ruined business reputation or the value of investments lost or productivity lost as Alabamians stand in line for hours to prove their citizenship in any transaction with the government. Or what the state will ultimately spend fighting off an onslaught of lawsuits, or training and deploying police officers in the widening immigrant dragnet, or paying the cost of diverting scarce resources away from fighting real crimes.

A growing number of Alabamians say the price will be too high, and there is compelling evidence that they are right. Alabama is already at the low end of states in employment and economic vitality. It has long struggled to lure good jobs and shed a history of racial intolerance.

Go to http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/28/opinion/the-price-of-intolerance.html?_r=3&hp to read the rest of the article.

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