While truth can shine a light, it usually takes lies to generate heat.

Take the immigration debate, which is about to get underway again. President Obama has said that he intends to pursue comprehensive immigration reform. And recently, New York Senator Chuck Schumer said that he planned to have a bill written by Labor Day. We can expect six to eight months of spirited debate before Spring 2010, at which point Congress will either have passed the bill or defeated it.

Whenever we talk about immigration, much of the heat that is generated comes from myths and assumptions masquerading as facts. These are things that people know in their bones to be true, even though they aren’t really true at all. An example is when people say immigrant birthrates in the United States are going up, but all the available research points to the fact that newcomers are having smaller families — mostly for economic reasons.

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