Immigration American Identity

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Immigration & the American Identity
Since first settled by the Pilgrims, the United States has been a nation of immigrants united together in a common ideology of democracy. The concept of cultural assimilation is inapplicable to the United States, considering its very existence as a giant mixture of different cultures. Recent political events have been very foreboding towards the future of immigration into the United States. Therefore, it is important to recall that throughout all the 239 years the U.S. has been a country, immigrants have consistently shaped our nation into what it is today.
The expectation of cultural assimilation is outdated in context with immigration to the United States. The United States is characterized and strengthened
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Dubbed the ‘melting pot,’ the U.S. is known for its diversity in cultures stemming from the thousands of immigrants who came during the days of Ellis Island and those that continue to immigrate here. The cultural diversity all throughout the United States is apparent through many factors. For example, the US Census Bureau projects that more than 300 languages are spoken in the United States, all of which broken into four categories; Spanish, indo-european languages, asian and pacific island languages, and a category labeled other that contains languages like hungarian and arabic. Additionally, according to the American Community Survey, immigrants and their children born in the U.S. constitute 26 percent of the population, a significant amount. Of course that percentage is also on top of the fact, that virtually all American citizens are descendants of immigrants, on either side or both. Logically, it's impossible to culturally assimilate to a country that is defined by its lack of one concise…show more content…
Culture, by its definition, is, “the customs, arts, social institutions, and achievements of a particular nation, people, or other social group.” Almost 80% of Americans identify themselves as caucasian, yet within this large group there is a great variance in culture. This group is comprised of european cultures, ranging from italian to irish, in addition to middle eastern cultures, ranging from israeli to arabian. Similarly, around 12.3% percent of Americans identify themselves as black, yet once again within this group there is a multitude of different cultures; ethiopian, haitian, south african, and many more. These statistics demonstrate that race has no direct impact on cultural diversity. Despite this, people tend to be identified by race almost always more than by culture. Race being more commonly used as an identifier, is purely due to the fact that it is easier to distinguish between races, than between cultures, because the differences are generally more nuanced. Also relating back to the previous idea of the United States as melting pot, many cultures that were probably more distinctive at one point in time have become interwoven into the ‘general’ culture within America. Overall, race, despite its being a popular defining feature, is not the same as
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