Martin Luther King Jr. believed in the need for what he termed a “world house,” a commitment to a society of global inclusion. “We are all caught up in an inescapable web of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny,” he declared. Indeed, there are interconnected forces governing our world, and American demographic trends reflect the transnational movement of peoples on today’s planet. Accelerating this transformation has been the recent arrival of tens of millions of immigrants to the United States. Instead of repeating earlier immigration patterns in which peoples arrived from Europe, these new immigrants travel here from all parts of the globe: Asia, Africa, the Caribbean, Central and South America. Today, new immigrants are changing the traditional notion of what it means to be “American.” Arguably, because of the strikingly diverse nature of its citizenry, the United States is in the process of becoming a universal nation.
The writers in this chapter reflect in their own ethnic and racial origins the broad mosaic—some prefer to call it a kaleidoscope—that characterizes life in the United States today. Consider the historical magnitude of this national transformation. North America once belonged to native tribes, and the legacy of slavery, which began in 1621 when a Dutch man-of-war ship brought the first Africans to the Jamestown colony, also served to diversify the nation in ways that we continue to grapple with today. But from colonial times to 1965, the United States drew its population largely from Europe. First came the English, Scots-Irish, Germans, and French. The second great wave that began in the 1870s and continued up to World War I brought tens of millions of immigrants from southern and eastern Europe. For centuries, immigrants from non-European parts of the world were systematically excluded, with restrictive quotas preserving certain assumptions about the racial and ethnic character of the nation.
New American Mosaic: Are We Becoming a Universal Nation?
Steve Kelley/The Times – Picayune
Thinking about the Image
Are the people portrayed in this cartoon stereotypes? How can you tell? Do you find the stereotypes offensive, or do they help the cartoon make sense? Can you think of any comedians or hip-hop artists who use stereotypes in a way that points out an uncomfortable truth?
This cartoon uses irony to make its point. What, specifically, is ironic about this cartoon?
What political situation or issue is Steve Kelley, the cartoonist, responding to in this cartoon? What is his opinion? Does he make his point effectively?
The Immigration Act of 1965 abolished all such quotas and opened the United States—for the first time in the nation’s history—to the world’s population. Now everyone presumably had a fair opportunity to achieve the American Dream, whatever this ambiguous term might mean. And arrive they did—from Mexico, Vietnam, India, Nigeria, Cuba, the Philippines, Iran, and China—all seeking a place in the new global nation. Of course, this contemporary collision and intersection of peoples, races, and cultures is not only an American phenomenon; many countries in Europe are dealing with similar patterns. But nowhere is this new global reality more apparent than in the United States. In certain states—California, for example—and in many major American cities, “minorities” have become majorities. According to the most recent census data, by 2056 the “average” American will be as likely to trace his or her origins to the Hispanic world, Asia, or the Pacific islands as to Europe. These demographic changes are often reflected on college campuses, with students from scores of national backgrounds speaking dozens of languages sharing classes together.
The story of American civilization is still unfinished, but the authors in this chapter suggest certain directions it will take. They write about conflicts and challenges posed by the new American Dream, which is ostensibly open to, if not necessarily desired by, all the peoples of the world. They wrestle with America’s complex fate. They ask collectively: How can America continue to be a beacon for peoples from around the planet seeking work, safety, security, freedom, and the right to freely practice and preserve their own customs and beliefs? Can America be—should it be—the model for a universal nation?
We hope the content provided above was helpful. In case you want your essay written by our experts, kindly feel free to place your order and get plagiarism-free content on any topic of your choice.We always deliver within the set deadlines. Thank you.
We value our customers and so we ensure that what we do is 100% original..
With us you are guaranteed of quality work done by our qualified experts.Your information and everything that you do with us is kept completely confidential.
You have to be 100% sure of the quality of your product to give a money-back guarantee. This describes us perfectly. Make sure that this guarantee is totally transparent.Read more
The Product ordered is guaranteed to be original. Orders are checked by the most advanced anti-plagiarism software in the market to assure that the Product is 100% original. The Company has a zero tolerance policy for plagiarism.Read more
The Free Revision policy is a courtesy service that the Company provides to help ensure Customer’s total satisfaction with the completed Order. To receive free revision the Company requires that the Customer provide the request within fourteen (14) days from the first completion date and within a period of thirty (30) days for dissertations.Read more
The Company is committed to protect the privacy of the Customer and it will never resell or share any of Customer’s personal information, including credit card data, with any third party. All the online transactions are processed through the secure and reliable online payment systems.Read more
By placing an order with us, you agree to the service we provide. We will endear to do all that it takes to deliver a comprehensive paper as per your requirements. We also count on your cooperation to ensure that we deliver on this mandate.Read more