GROWING TOGETHER.

Growing Together

The measure of any great nation is how well it can adapt and change to the needs of its people. One of the things that Americans wanted to be sure was part of the very core of the American way of life is that we would strive together to make life better for all of us, not just a select few.

That is really what sets this country apart from others. We are not a nation of one tribe or ethnic peoples. We are a people gathered from the four corners of the earth to make one nation that together is greater than all the other nations were separately. As much as there is a lot of debate and disagreement sometimes about who are the “Real Americans”, we, as a people, cannot drift very far from our origins. We all came here as immigrants. We all succeeded here because the others that were already here pitched in and helped our grandparents when it was hard. That is who we are and that is what makes us great.

This is not to say that it has always been easy for us to grow together and accept our many differences. The civil rights movements that have taken place in America especially in the last century have been simultaneously our greatest achievement and sometimes our greatest shame. But yet year after year, struggle after struggle, civil rights have prevailed and America has done what it always done, gone back to its roots, and reminded itself that it is a people that is great because of the combined blessings of many peoples and work to make things equal for all peoples.

It is an ongoing effort to try with all we have to keep our doors open to the world and yet to protect ourselves, to make life in America one of opportunity for those that are new here and for those who have been here for generations and to eliminate discrimination and injustice wherever we find it in our country. But the great thing about America is we try. We don’t give up and decide that we are no longer going to make sure this country is great for every citizen. The dialog goes on, sometimes loudly, sometimes with tears and hugs but it goes on. And with each new round of the civil rights struggle in this country, America comes out of the effort stronger, not weaker, and richer not poorer and more American than ever before.

In fact, the ethnic diversity of this country is also one of its greatest joys. You can hardly think of “American food” without thinking of Pizza, Egg Rolls, Jambalaya or French toast. And yet each of these foods was brought to us from the homeland of one of our great ethnic citizenries. And with each new population that makes its home in America, we get stronger, we find more pleasure in each others culture and, to be sure, we eat better.

Sometimes the struggle for civil rights gives the wrong impression that Americans are closed to change. In actual fact, the opposite is the truth. Americans take great joy in assimilating new neighbors. That is what makes American culture so wonderful. It is at the same time, completely diverse as it honors each ethic group that celebrates its heritage in America and uniquely American. Those who immigrate here even in modern times discover a population that very much wants them to preserve and respect the “old country” and keep all that way great about their heritage.

But at the same time, all who come here are celebrated as new Americans and will quickly find themselves cheering at a baseball game and standing with pride to sing the national anthem because even those who are new to this great land are as much Americans as those whose families have been here for generations. This commonality of our citizenry is what makes us great and makes us strong. And it assures that for future generations, civil rights movements will never cease. They will continue to work hard to guarantee that all who come to be truly American are given the same rights and privileges as all who have come here before.
Growing Together

The measure of any great nation is how well it can adapt and change to the needs of its people. One of the things that Americans wanted to be sure was part of the very core of the American way of life is that we would strive together to make life better for all of us, not just a select few.

That is really what sets this country apart from others. We are not a nation of one tribe or ethnic peoples. We are a people gathered from the four corners of the earth to make one nation that together is greater than all the other nations were separately. As much as there is a lot of debate and disagreement sometimes about who are the “Real Americans”, we, as a people, cannot drift very far from our origins. We all came here as immigrants. We all succeeded here because the others that were already here pitched in and helped our grandparents when it was hard. That is who we are and that is what makes us great.

This is not to say that it has always been easy for us to grow together and accept our many differences. The civil rights movements that have taken place in America especially in the last century have been simultaneously our greatest achievement and sometimes our greatest shame. But yet year after year, struggle after struggle, civil rights have prevailed and America has done what it always done, gone back to its roots, and reminded itself that it is a people that is great because of the combined blessings of many peoples and work to make things equal for all peoples.

It is an ongoing effort to try with all we have to keep our doors open to the world and yet to protect ourselves, to make life in America one of opportunity for those that are new here and for those who have been here for generations and to eliminate discrimination and injustice wherever we find it in our country. But the great thing about America is we try. We don’t give up and decide that we are no longer going to make sure this country is great for every citizen. The dialog goes on, sometimes loudly, sometimes with tears and hugs but it goes on. And with each new round of the civil rights struggle in this country, America comes out of the effort stronger, not weaker, and richer not poorer and more American than ever before.

In fact, the ethnic diversity of this country is also one of its greatest joys. You can hardly think of “American food” without thinking of Pizza, Egg Rolls, Jambalaya or French toast. And yet each of these foods was brought to us from the homeland of one of our great ethnic citizenries. And with each new population that makes its home in America, we get stronger, we find more pleasure in each others culture and, to be sure, we eat better.

Sometimes the struggle for civil rights gives the wrong impression that Americans are closed to change. In actual fact, the opposite is the truth. Americans take great joy in assimilating new neighbors. That is what makes American culture so wonderful. It is at the same time, completely diverse as it honors each ethic group that celebrates its heritage in America and uniquely American. Those who immigrate here even in modern times discover a population that very much wants them to preserve and respect the “old country” and keep all that way great about their heritage.

But at the same time, all who come here are celebrated as new Americans and will quickly find themselves cheering at a baseball game and standing with pride to sing the national anthem because even those who are new to this great land are as much Americans as those whose families have been here for generations. This commonality of our citizenry is what makes us great and makes us strong. And it assures that for future generations, civil rights movements will never cease. They will continue to work hard to guarantee that all who come to be truly American are given the same rights and privileges as all who have come here before.

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