The United States, The Melting Pot

The United States has Changed from a Melting Pot to a Vast Culture with Varying Racial Backgrounds.

The United States, created by blending or ?melting? many cultures together into one common

man, known as an American. ?Modern communication and transportation accelerate mass migrations from

one continent . . .? to the United States (Schlesinger 21). Ethnic and racial diversity was bound to happen

in the American society. As immigration began to explode, ?. . . a cult of ethnicity erupted both between

non Anglo whites and among nonwhite minorities.? (22).

Until recently, the only country who has made a multiethnic society work, was the United States.

Hector St. John de Crevecoeur said, in America ?. . . individuals of all nations are melted into a new race of

men.? Is this still true? The creation of the U.S. ?. . . was not to preserve old cultures but to forge a new,

American culture." (Schlesinger 22).

In the 20th century, the melting pot is not working, and the whole idea is under attack (Evans

76). The United States has changed from a melting pot to a vast culture with varying backgrounds. In

years before, America was a collection of Chinese, Germans, Italians, Scots, Croats, etc., all craving

freedom. Today, even the simple concept of an English-speaking nation is fading off the continent. ?In the

old days, immigrants were taught in English in the public schools.? (76). In America today, children are

taught in German, Italian, Polish, and 108 other languages. Most of these schools are funded by 139

million federal dollars.

Until recently, emigrants in the United States longed for admittance in society's mainstream.

Now these groups demand separation from society, to be able to preserve and conserve their customs and

languages. The biggest problem with this demand, is whatever accommodation takes place, must be done

and accepted by the receiving society (Chavez 60).

The increasing accommodations directed toward immigrant culture worries many Americans.

Americans fear the special treatment granted to immigrants will effect the unifying force of the country.

?Today, the trend is toward multiculturalism, diversity and adapting the newcomer, rather than on the

newcomer adapting himself or herself to . . .? a diverse society (61).

Many Americans believe the nation has lost control of its boundaries. Concerned if

immigration continues, the U.S. economy will suffer, and that employment will be scarce. Immigrants ?. .

.are flooding the welfare rolls and are heavily involved in crime.?(Morganthau 18). The increase number of

U. S. immigrants does effect the number of jobs available. The problem is, immigrants are either highly

qualified ( take American jobs) or are less than skilled in any field (increase welfare). The view on

immigration today is one of a drag on the economy, instead of

a lift (18).

In 1995, new immigration laws transfigure the American society. As a result, races group together

to defend their customs. The current immigration problem also increases the racial tension facing America

today. One result of racism in the United States is hate groups and gangs. Both have only one thing in

common--violence! ?The very use of the term ?of color? - which embraces blacks, . . .? Asians, Native

Americans and Hispanics, ?. . . many whom are ethnically white - implies that these disparate groups are

bonded simply by not being of Northern European descent.? (Henry III 73). One example of these hate

groups is the Ku Klux Klan, known for their hatred toward African Americans, Catholics, and Jews.

The growing diversity of the American population makes the popularity of ?multiculturalism? and

?Political Correctness? explode. The main function of this craze is to raise minority self-esteem. Viewed

by some, the obstacle this creates is not for the better. Multiculturalism helps unite groups and separates

them from the rest of the country. ?. . .Civil liberties and human rights -- is portrayed as the root of all evil .

. . ? (Schlesinger 3). A positive approach would have Americans stop seeing themselves as members of

primarily one ethnic group, gaining their total identity from that group. White or black, Hispanic or

Asian, they must envision themselves simply as Americans.

Works Cited

Brookhiser, Richard. ?The Melting Pot is Still Simmering.? Time,

1 March 1993, p. 72.

Chavez, Linda, and Cohn-Bendit, Daniel. ?Multicultural Society: Mosaic or Melting Pot?? World

Link, March/April 1992, pp. 60-64.

Evans, Harold. ?Melting Pot or Salad Bowl?? U.S. News