Editor, the Advocate:
Immigration seems to be ever present in current political and public debate, yet little mention is made about the effects it has upon migrants’ assimilation into American society.
For more than 200 years, our societal and cultural traditions and values served as a beacon to humanity, inspiring millions to come in search of a better life. As immigrant populations ebbed and flowed over time, what followed were periods of integration and assimilation into the populace. And, assimilation traditionally meant “Americanization,” whereby the immigrant became a person who shared America’s principles, values, beliefs and customs; typically learned to speak and write in English; adjusted to American culture; and contributed to advancing and making the country better for all.
The immigrant influx seen today is different, and the processes and institutions related to their assimilation differ from that of earlier decades.
Seemingly, the trend is for no assimilation into America whatsoever, and the current wave of immigrants become residents not because they are attracted to America’s culture and creed but solely because they are attracted to our government’s social welfare and affirmative action programs. Many choose to remain noncitizens, seeing no incentive for citizenship. And, in their arrogance, they demonstrate the false belief that U. S. immigration laws and rules do not apply to them.
Unfortunately, assimilation no longer means Americanization, and our children and future generations are likely to see America’s character being greatly determined by language, culture and ways of life borne within the countries of immigrant origin, not America. To our detriment, this issue is also being magnified by some within the U. S. Congress abandoning American culture to promote multiculturalism and constituting laws and policies promoting and protecting the practice of balkanized groups with their infinite array of grievances.
What is most worthy of concern is that uncontrolled immigration and hostility towards assimilation will eventually disunite and unravel the America most of recognize. The phrase E Pluribus Unum, “out of many, one,” shall cease to be the centerpiece of the Great Seal of the United States of America.
The Constitution of the United States of America allows for every person in every generation to make this country better for everyone. The choice is ours, and the destiny of our great republic resides within us.
Bobby D. Whitefield, Victoria