It’s not just because I am a First Generation Dominican Immigrant , or because I don’t fit the European image of what society has deemed American, but hearing people say “speak English we’re in America.” boils my blood.
Why you wonder? Because America likes to market itself to the rest of the world as the “land of the free” where all cultures are welcomed and accepted. But this isn’t actually true, we don’t actually hold ourselves to this standard. Saying speak English we’re in America implies that the only culture accepted is the English American one. I am in America but that doesn’t obligate me to Americanize myself to the point of depleting every aspect of my ethnically rooted culture. Americans keeping customs/traditions from their ethnic culture alive is the exact reason the fabric of America is so beautifully sown with different colors. So many children of native speakers speak English instead of their ethnic cultures language as a result of Americanization. The fact that there is a Muslim Ban highlights the complete and utter disregard of the foundations the constitution evidently layout. People should not be ostracized for religious beliefs, from a country that honors free religion in their constitution (First Amendment).
America was named the “melting pot in 1908 describing a fusion of nationalities, cultures and ethnicities.” America has always been marveled at by other countries for not having one relative image/ethnicity of an American, but having multiple due to it’s diversity. Citizens and Immigrants alike, both have contributed to the cultural diversity of our nation through keeping the traditions and aspects of their culture alive, such as language. By telling people to speak English, we diminish culture as if it hasn’t been damaged already with westernization in third world countries. It especially angers me because the people who cause Americanization aren’t those who rightfully own the land, “The question of who colonized the Americas, and when, has long been hotly debated. Traditionally, Native Americans are believed to have descended from northeast Asia, arriving over a land bridge between Siberia and Alaska some 12,000 years ago and then migrating across North and South America.”
People who claim ownership of this land use patriotism as a catalyst through which to ostracize other groups from it. History repeats itself and it has shown that when countries face things, such as economic crises they begin to use migrated groups as scapegoats, when those groups are not actually entirely at fault. But I mean isn’t it logic? That one group can’t possibly be responsible for all the issues. Generalizations such as those are simply inaccurate being that everyone is different because we live in such a diverse world, and people most likely have different intentions despite identity.
We cannot label menaces by skin, class, sexual orientation, gender etc.
People use fear as a way to validate discrimination (a.k.a the 45th POTUS) Patriotism doesn’t give you the right to discriminate. I mean really America land of the free and home of the brave can’t take responsibility for their own actions? It’s unrealistic and completely biased to say or assume that one group is responsible for all the issues, these generalizations harm the entire group when it is a small minority who realistically poses a threat.
Nature isn’t considered beautiful because of uniformity, because it isn’t uniform, it’s considered beautiful because everything is so unique and contrasting in comparison to each other, which together creates a captivating image. America is beautiful because of the array of ethnicity’s, religions etc.
America needs to start staying true to what they like the rest of the World to believe, but don’t actually deliver. There should not be one image/language of an American in society. We are all American just with different ethnic backgrounds. Citizenship should not be a pass to dismiss any other socially diverse group. No citizen is any more deserving of rights than a person who’s identity is socially threatened i.e: Muslim Americans, Colored Americans, Jewish Americans, American Women, LGBTQ+ Americans, Disabled Americans etc.
It might sound stupid for me to point out what is obviously true, but although to some of us the idea of equal rights are a given, others feel they can question other citizens rights due to their identities not conforming to norms.
There has been a rise in Anti-antisemitism, Islamophobia, LGBTQ+ hate crimes, and Misogyny since our President was elected which is why this idea must be highlighted. Things we thought we had long overcame are beginning to reappear which is really terrifying to think about. Fundamental rights of Women have also been revoked because certain citizens feel they can deem who is deserving of rights.
People have been starting to feel empowered to hate and deny rights to Americans who represent minorities in society, when throughout the history of this country we have came to the realization, that equal treatment for everyone should be a priority to honor.