Melting pot vs Multiculturalism

Discussion in 'Politics' started by SeekingTruth, Apr 2, 2006.

  1. SeekingTruth

    SeekingTruth
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    For years, this country was known as a melting pot. Immigrants, for the most part, tried to learn our language and our ways. While there remained enclaves of ethnic groups, there did not seem to be the extreme desire to keep their original culture that I find today. Now what seems to be the prevailing view is that everyone should be encouraged to hold to his/her native culture and remain separated from the culture of America.

    What are your views on this topic?
     
  2. Daisy

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    First generation immigrants have always had a difficult time. Not everyone has much ability for languages - look how many native-born Americans can't speak the language well. My great-grandmother on my mother's mother's side spoke no English. When I was growing up, many of my friend's grandmothers only spoke Italian, Chinese or Spanish (the mothers & grandmothers tended to have less interaction outside their immediate neighborhood than did the men and children of the families).

    I'm not sure what timeframe you're using in your generalizations. America has always been a polyglot nation. New York City alone has in January the Spanish Harlem Three Kings Parade, February (or end of Jan) the Chinese New Year's Parade, March St. Patrick's Day (plus the Brooklyn Irish and the Throgs Neck Irish Parades), April the Scottish Bagpipers & Drummers Parade, the Sikh Society Parade (and Festival), the Greek Independence Day Parade, May La Gran Parada Cubano, the Bronx Latino Unidos Parade, the Turkish-American Parade, the Haitian-American Day Parade (as well as the earlier Haitian Flag Day Parade), the Norwegian-American Parade, the Salute to Israel Parade, June the Phillipine Independence Day Parade, the Hare Krishna Parade, the Puerto Rican Day Parade, July Festival de Gran Parada del Domenica, August Bronx and Brooklyn Puerto Rico Day Parade, India Independence Day Parade, Dominican Day Parade, Pakistan Independence Day Parade, September West Indian American Day Carnival Parade, the Steuben Day Parade, the Muslim Day Parade, the Mexican Day Parade, the African-American Day Parade, OctoberColumbus Day Parade, the Hispanic Day Parade, the Nigerian Parade, the Pulaski Day Parade, the Korean-American Harvest Day Parade, November & December (no ethnic parades). That's just parades - there are also festivals, carnivals, block parties and events (like Cinco de Mayo). There are also parades of all or no ethnicity celebrating various people, cultures, occasions and causes. Man, no wonder traffic is such a mess in the City!

    Assimilation has always been a mixed bag here - from the Chinese who were forbidden citizenship on ethnic grounds to Native Americans who were forbidden to use their native languages and discouraged from acknowledging their own culture.

    English Only will antagonize and divide this country more than it already is.
     
  3. Rocko9

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    I have no problem with a person holding on to their culture. Daisy has listed a number of events and special days that we celebrate here in this country.
    I think Teddy Roosevelt put it into a proper perspective.
    __________________________________________

    "In the first place we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin. But this is predicated upon the man's becoming in very fact an American, and nothing but an American...

    There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn't an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag, and this excludes the red flag, which symbolizes all wars against liberty and civilization, just as much as it excludes any foreign flag of a nation to which we are hostile...We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language...and we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people."

    --Theodore Roosevelt, 1919
     
  4. billwald

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    Until 20 years ago people came here for the purpose of becomming Americans and getting a part of the American Dream. Now they come here to send money back to the old country.
     
  5. poncho

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    They tell us times have changed and the old ways of thinking are no longer applicable today. Now we are to think of ourselves as global citizens and put the collective ahead of the individual.

    More groups means more divisions, more divisions means more strife, more strife means more friction, more friction means more violence, more violence means the state needs more funding more power and more control.
     
  6. poncho

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  7. Dragoon68

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    We need one official common language in this country and that's American English. It's just best if everyone living here permanently can communicate effectively in one official common language. We don't need to complicate communication. Imagine the printing costs alone in multiple languages for all the laws and regulations our governments generate! People that want to live here long term need to learn the language even if it's difficult. But, if a person wants to learn and puts some effort into it, there are many sources - non government - that will help them. It's just plain common sense to have one official common language so much so that no one ever thought it would be necessary to clarify it!

    We can have all the second or third languages we want. It's probably good to know more than one language. If we choose to live in another country we should learn the official common language of that country. It's not easy - some are very difficult to native American English speakers - but it's best. It's probably more difficult as we get older. Try one of the tonal based Asian languages like Vietnamese if you want a real challenge! We should not expect the people of other nations to change to American English or demand that they communicate to us in our language. It's insulting to others just as they doing likewise in our country is to us.

    People, can if they like, remember from where they or their ancestors came. Whether they do or not they'd best fit in and live wherever they are as residents or citizens of their new home. It's good to preserve one's ancestry so we know our roots but not to the detriment of the present and not to antagonize or burden everyone else. Waving the national colors of a foreign country is a certain way to alienate the host nation. Chanting slogans of brash - in your face - ethinic unity is not a good way to win friends among members of different group. Sharing things about your national orgins to a welcome audience can be very positive. People respect others when they show respect themselves.

    There's nothing wrong with keeping aspects of one's culture alive among friends and family where it doesn't cause a problem for everyone else. We can have special days of celebration, unique cusine, and decorate our homes and business the way we want. We do this in my home! There's nothing wrong with having privately organized community events centered around one's culture. There's nothing wrong with private businesses that cater to certain groups. But, whatever we do, we shouldn't rub anyone's nose in it and we should respect the fact they may not like or approve of our culture which is their choice. We should force it upon others. It's the same if we go somewhere else to live.

    Being accepted is different than being tolerated. Tolerance has become misconstrued into mandated acceptance and diversity into mandated inclusion. We're under no obligation to accept anyone else - not them, not their culture, and not their religion. We do have an obligation to be tolerant of others to the extent our law requires. Our government schools are teaching mandated acceptance and forced inclusion in the name of tolerance and diversity. That's wrong! Such choices should be the perrogative of the parents and not the government.
     

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