Combining these two quotes, America can only fall apart at the seams by people dividing. In his latest book, E. J. Iodine expresses the idea that Americans can’t come together as one because they are unable to agree on they have been. Iodine’s point of American’s separation due to disagreements can be affirmed by America’s great divisions of different ideas of history, class, and race. Americans are unable to agree on who they are as one because some Americans have a diluted view of history, wealth and class make not all Americans equal, and racial differences still cause great divisions in society.
Americans find it difficult to come together as one because we have trouble greening on the past, due to some common historical inaccuracies, including Columbus finding America, the ‘settlers’, and Native American history. In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue. And, when he reached his destination he killed, raped and enslaved innocent natives. Americans have a particularly interesting perception of Christopher 2 Columbus. He has been idealized as a hero, worshipped by American culture.
When in reality, he was truly a villain; In so agonizing him [Columbus], they reflect our national culture. Indeed, now that Presidents’ Day has combined Washington’s and Lincoln birthdays, Columbus is one of only two people the United States honors by name in a national holiday. The one date that every schoolchild remembers is 1492, and sure enough, every textbook I surveyed includes it. But most of them leave out virtually everything that is important to know about Columbus and the European exploration of the Americas. Lone 32) As this shows, Columbus Was not the hero that people see him as. Columbus was not almighty, nor righteous. His intentions were not to bring glory to Mother Spain, but to instead for personal gains, such as wealth. This also reflects divided American views. It is nearly impossible for the American people to agree on who they have been if they have been, when some see select historical figures as heroes and others see villains. Some white Americans see their forefathers as great godhead, while from the Native American perspective, things a slightly different. The treatment of heroes and their victims – the quiet acceptance of conquest and murder in the name of progress-is only one aspect of a certain approach to history, in which the past is told from the point of view of governments, conquerors, diplomats, leaders,” (Zion 28). This also puts us under the pretense is that there really is such a thing as ‘the United States’, subject to occasional conflicts an quarrels, but fundamentally a community of people with common interests.
It is as if there really is a ‘national interest represented in the Constitution, in territorial 3 expansion, in the laws passed by Congress, the decisions of the courts, the development of capitalism, the culture of education and the mass media. It puts one in the position to say that the United States agenda was to expand, with no regard to how it had to be done. America are not united because mom might argue that the wouldn’t be the great world power we are today, if the country had never been formed, but some might argue that there is no way to justify the genocide of the native people.
The ‘national interest’ of the United States seem to represent a large portion of the demographic of people who have been in charge of the country ever since – white, middle-aged males; “The historian’s distortion is more than technical, it is ideological; it is released into a world of contending interests, where any chosen emphasis supports (whether the historian means to or not) some kind of interest, whether economic or political or racial or national or sexual” (Zion 14).
White men in charge did not want to be in a position of having the horribly racist past, and rather decided to fluff up the story of Columbus, giving him god-like characteristics. Americans worship a gold-hungry rapist, because he is credited for ‘discovering’ America, a feat that Viking did nearly 500 years prior. It reflects a divided America of those who suffered and those who caused the suffering trying to hide it. American’s inability to agree on some historical events, such as Christopher Columbus and the ‘settlers’, can cause a fissure teen Americans.
The idea that the white settlers carved out America can cause separation of ideas between Americans. There is the common myth that the pilgrims were the first in a parade of brave settlers who pushed civilization westward along the frontier with elbow grease and sheer strength. In written records from early colonial times, one constantly comes across ‘settlers’ being shocked at how convenient the American wilderness made 4 things for them. The eastern forests, generally portrayed by great American writers as a ‘thick, unbroken snarl of trees’ no longer existed by the time white
European settlers actually showed up. The pilgrims couldn’t believe their luck when they found that American forests just naturally contained an ecological kaleidoscope; Whether they honestly believed they’d lucked into the 17th century equivalent of Candela or were being willfully ignorant about how the land got so tamed, the truth about the pre-settled wilderness didn’t make it into the official account. It’s the same reason every extraordinarily lucky CEO of the past 100 years has written a book about leadership.
It’s always a better idea to credit hard work and intelligence than to acknowledge that you just got luckier than any group of people has ever gotten in the history of the world (Zion 175) The white settlers merely claimed credit for the Native Americans hard work. The Native Americans also came to the assistance of the pilgrims, when they became desperate enough to ask for help. Many of the ‘settlers’ were wasting their time digging for gold, and when winter came, the pilgrims nearly turned to cannibalism. Obviously, when people steal credit for the work Of Others, there will some hard feelings and division.
White settlers stealing credit for the Native Americans carving out the country still causes separation between he two. To this day, the country still celebrates the holiday of Thanksgiving. This holiday celebrates the pilgrims finding the country and making peace with the Native Americans, commemorating the feast that was shared between the two. Yet again, this is inaccurate; The next year, 1621 , with the help of the Wanting People, the Puritans 5 learned how to live and make a bountiful harvest. In celebration of their good fall harvest, the colony’s governor, William Bradford, declared a three-day feast after the harvest.
The Natives that attended this feast were not even invited. The Puritans had only invited Mastoid the Wanting leader. It was Mastoid that brought the other 90 or more of his Native brothers and sisters that saved the colony to the chagrin of the rather rude and indignant Puritans. The Natives also provided most of the food. There were no prayers of thanksgiving of any kind and the Natives were not invited back ever again for any other such events (Oxidize 7). As this shows, the Native Americans, who made the whole feast, the whole existence of the settlers, possible, were not even invited and just showed up, never to be invited back.
The two were ever ‘united’ as one again for even merely a meal. The only time they all came together was when the pilgrims needed assistance. The colonies were not united between all people, simply the white people came together for their similar hatred of the English monarchy over religion. Americans were not, and are still not, ‘one’. These blunders, such as the settlers founding America and Native American history, keep the American people divided. Historical inaccuracies, particularly the common incorrect perception of Native American history, cause a rift between Americans.
The first inaccuracy bout their history is the common notion that Native Americans were very primitive. Portrayed in popular movies such as Pocahontas, Native Americans were seen to have a hippie-like culture, where they were connected to mother earth and father tree. The European settlers had to teach them how to be civilized and how to behave as humans, not as animals. This 6 is extremely incorrect; “One of the best examples of how we got Native Americans all wrong is Iacocca, a massive Native American city located in modern day East SST. Louis.
In 1250, it was bigger than London, and featured a biophysicist society with an urban center, satellite villages and thatched-roof houses lining the central plazas” (Bordering 176). This shows how the Europeans just wanted to seem better than the Native People and made them seem primitive, to almost justify taking over their land and killing off 90% of the population with the aid Of a plague. This is what causes a huge rift between Americans. White settlers, roughly 77. 7% of the population today, killed off the native people, roughly 1. 2% of the population now, and have taken ownership of the country.
The most mind-boggling fact is that Native Americans had lived on the two continents of North and South America for 12,000 years prior to white Europeans arriving. Now, white people who have only lived on the continents for about 300 years, are attempting to remove Mexicans for immigrating into America, as if the majority of people that make the immigration laws are once again white males, aren’t technically immigrants themselves. Another commonly ignored piece of Native American history is the significant influence on American culture. Settlers defecting to join native society were so common that it became a major issue for colonial leaders.
Pilgrims were so scared of Indian influence that they outlawed the wearing of long hair. “Benjamin Franklin noted that, ‘No European who has tasted Savage Life can afterwards bear to live in our societies. ‘” (Gay 15). Franklin wasn’t pointing this out as a critique of the settlers who defected – he believed that Indian societies provided greater opportunities for happiness than European cultures – and he wasn’t the only Founding Father who thought settlers could learn a thing or two from them. They didn’t dress up like Indians at the Boston Tea 7 Party ironically. That was common protesting gear during the American evolutions.
This little known ‘secret’ still seem to cause some division as while historians want to portray early America as a place to escape to Europe and start over a new life, it mainly provided an escape from European society. The settlers in Indian culture also directly influenced American government; “Historians think the Iroquois Confederacy had a direct influence on the U. S. Constitution, and the Senate passed a resolution acknowledging that the confederation of the original the Ritter colonies into one republic was influenced by the Iroquois Confederacy, as were many of the democratic reminisces” (Chapman 112).
This is just another example of how the white settlers tried to claim all of the credit for founding the United States. By both taking the land and claiming all credit for founding, the white settlers found a new superiority complex, an idea that they are better than the Native Americans. Whenever one group of people thinks there are better than another group, there will always be a separation. Generations growing up thinking they aren’t as good is harmful, damaging self-esteems of children everywhere. If people cannot agree on their history, the very roots of who hey are, they will never come together.
Although considered to no longer still exist in America by some, the next problem is alive and dividing Americans, probably more so than any other problem. The one division that not only divided America, but also took away a whole nationals group status as human is none other than racism. Back to the pretense that there really is a United States, a community of people with common interests, if this were to exist, race would be completely ignored. It would just something minor, like a cleft chin or freckles. People would look neither positively nor negatively upon he subject.
Unfortunately, human history has been filled with the exact opposite. Racism has truly driven a wedge 8 between the American population, since the inception of the country. Recently, racism has taken new life through racial profiling of blacks. In the past 300 years, no one has faced as much adversity as African Americans, between slavery and segregation to modern day police violence. Slavery can be defined as a legal system under which people are treated as property. The first division that the colonies saw was a separation of an entire group of people from human status. Blacks didn’t come to America to pursue religious freedom.
They didn’t come to this strange land with a hope of starting-a-new. Instead, they were brought in shackles and chains, with the idea freedom as distant as their homeland that they were forcibly removed from. The notion that this country was built upon freedom is absolutely absurd, considering slavery took every freedom imaginable from blacks; “Husbands, wives, and children were frequently sold away from one another and punishment by whipping was not unusual. The United States Supreme Court in the 1857 Dared Scott Decision ruled that slaves were subhuman repertory with no rights of citizenship,” (Blake 6).
People, who were promised freedom in the Constitution, had that ripped away. Blacks weren’t even people, they were property. How can two people consider themselves not divided when one’s ancestors could have possibly owned the other person’s ancestors? Fast forward a few hundred years, now although they have are now considered humans, not property, blacks face segregation. In Pleases v. Ferguson in 1896, the idea of ‘separate but equal’ was created. This meant blacks were given full rights to public property, as long as they were designated for them.
Separate schools caused the greatest issue, as white schools were clearly superior. Black children, as young as 5, felt as if there was something wrong with them, that they did something to deserve having to walk an extra 5 miles to an 9 inadequate school. This caused the population of African Americans to fall behind and stay behind. Along with stereotypes, blacks saw no light at the end of the tunnel. The divisions between whites and blacks was unreal, considering the message coming across was white people inherently deserved better seats on the bus, better entrances to public places, even better water fountains.
In modern life, there is no slavery, segregation, or ‘separate but equal’, instead racism has taken a new ugly form; “Gone is the overt, violent, and legal racism of my childhood. It has been replaced by a subtler version. It is a racism that is easier to ignore, easier to deny, and consequently almost as dangerous,” (Earned 22). Racism is no longer ‘white- only places or ‘separate but equal’. It’s the black man walking around a store being followed by an employee, because the store is afraid he’s going to steal something.
It’s the eloquent African American women being told she ‘speaks well for a black person’. It’s Tartan Martin. It’s the well-qualified black man that didn’t get the job, because his employer is racist, but WOOL_SLD never State that as his reasons for not hiring him; Professors at the University of Chicago and MIT sent 5,000 fictitious resumes in response to 1,300 help wanted ads. Each resume listed identical qualifications except for one variation some applicants had Anglo-sounding names such as “Brendan,” while others had bloodsucking names such as “Kamala. Applicants with Anglo-sounding names were 50% more likely to get calls for interviews than their black-sounding counterparts. Most of the people who didn’t call “Kamala” were probably unaware that their decision was motivated by racial bias, says Daniel L. 10 Ames, a UCLA researcher who has studied and written about bias (Blake 13). Although illegal, job bias is still very prevalent. If minorities aren’t getting a job because of their race, they’re getting the job to improve diversity. Barriers between people form when certain people are or aren’t getting the job for something they’re born into and can’t control.
It’s commonly said that racism in America is dead because conditions have gotten better. It’s another in a repertoire of rhetorical tricks that is used in the United States to avoid the hard work Of addressing racism in its modern form. By focusing on progress, we attempt to cover up the still very alive beast. Obviously, things are better in terms of racism from the days of slavery, but that doesn’t mean it has gone away; Are things better now… What good is better to Remains McBride, Tyranny Martin or IANA Stanley-Jones?
Does better bring back Jordan Davis, Eureka Boyd and Jonathan Farrell? Is chronic unemployment made better because there are no longer “whites only signs escorting the South? Will children in Chicago, Philadelphia and DC sleep well at night knowing that even though their schools are closing and their educational opportunities are being ripped away from them, things are better? (Smith 5). Just because the inns are better doesn’t justify the inequalities that are still very alive. Things being better don’t affect the cycle of poverty.
We think once the racist generation dies Off, so will racism; “From an outsider’s perspective, America’s ‘melting pot’ culture may give the illusion that It is completely unprejudiced. After all, we have elected an 11 African American president, developed laws to aid minorities, and even gone so far as to grant illegal aliens services that are free of charge. However, having been born and raised in the United States, I will be the first to say that these foreign speculations are untrue,” (Earned 6). A favorite reason for racism being dead is that Barack Obama, a black man, is president.
We have minorities in all major positions, in government, in corporate America, and in fame. We have adapted and put minorities into everyday life. Racism clearly no longer exists because there is a small list of examples of blacks thriving wrought the country. But, there’s no cure all for racism; it’s like pink eye. Even when you think it’s gone, it keeps coming back; “We delude ourselves into thinking that, with time, things just get better. Insomuch as we’re willing to admit that racism is still a problem today, we conclude that it will no longer be such once older generations die off.