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Wednesday, October 8, 2014

What has Made America Great?

One could state technology, agriculture or manufacturing but that would be just scratching the surface. What’s behind all that?

It’s the people. The people are the ones who make it happen.  They were given the opportunity and resources to let their imagination run wild, a free reign to create. I get chills just thinking about it. The constitution certainly encouraged such endeavors, the philosophy that anything you set your mind to, combined with your powerful drive and ambition, could happen. 

But what is it that one common thread that has pulled the nation together, all the people? What is that one commonality that ensures as a nation we stand united, assimilation?

It didn’t matter if you were just off the boat from Ireland in the 1800’s, brought here as a slave, or ostracized for being a German or Japanese after WWII, everyone eventually assimilated into the American culture by first learning to speak English and eventually adopting  the customs, sometimes even more so than the families that have been here longer.

One such memory is when my husband and I were invited to a Russian friend’s 4th of July celebration. It had the usual amount of food, celebratory mood and fireworks. However, I couldn’t figure out what was so odd about it. I finally realized what it was. I was surrounded by people from Russia, Romania and Slovenia who recently became citizens. I was the only one there who had a family history of being US citizens.

Everyone celebrated the event but for them it had greater meaning.  I guess coming from countries without the freedom we take for granted does that to people. The people I was with were successful in their fields even more so then many of the people I knew at the time. They had embraced the American Dream.  It all made sense when I asked the Russian host when he had become a US citizen, He replied, “I’ve always been an American”.  Hmmm, that told me that inside he’s always had the entrepreneur spirit but wasn’t able to express it due to his government.

Yes we are the melting pot and assimilation is what helps the people unite.  It’s the commonality that brings us together not the differences.  Let’s focus on that!

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