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Assimilation and Pluralism

Updated on February 25, 2011

The United States is constantly changing in many ways. Some are bad and some are good. I think the United States is one of those countries that has someone from  virtually ever corner of the world.  These different members of society do not all follow he American culture, they practice what they believe and in my opinion, there is nothing wrong with that. The problem with it is the so called American backlash where we have people who call themselves Americans wanting to tear someone down based on their own cultural beliefs.

Assimilation is about groups coming together to be more alike rather than different.  I don’t believe this is occurring in the United States. I think people want the freedom to be who they are and follow whatever religion they want.  I live in El Paso Texas which where the majority of the population is Hispanic or Mexican American. This is a city that I guess refuses to assimilate into American culture or society. The majority of non Spanish speaking citizens in this city cannot find work because they are not bilingual. Many individuals find themselves in interviews where everything looks great on paper but are told that their lack of being bilingual will cost them the job. Furthermore, this city also has many establishments from Walmart to Old Navy stores that hire employees that do not speak English.

Pluralism involves a society wherein the diversity of racial and or religious or ethnic and cultural groups is tolerated. Once again, I don’t believe that the U.S. falls into this category completely. Perhaps I feel this way based on where I live in the country, but I often find societies incapable of tolerating anyone that doesn’t fit into a certain ideological mold.

The entire concept of assimilation somewhat troubles me. For the most part, I don’t see the problem with different racial groups and cultural groups coming together and living. I think diversity is one of the greatest things and I wish society could overcome its prejudices and hate. I mean, literally, who wants to be surrounded by people who are exactly like themselves?


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      Carpinteria 2 years ago

      Too many comelimpnts too little space, thanks!

    • SOBF profile image

      SOBF 6 years ago from New York, NY

      Excellent Hub - I do think you overlooked one form of community evolution, that being integration. If I were to see America in any single mode of incorporating the lifestyles and cultures of others it would be through this manner. Foreign cultures have successfully integrated into American culture since day one. Integration allows one culture to maintain its rich history and tradition while becoming a viable and accepted part of the entire community. After a period of time their culture becomes part of the entire community rather than a separate culture.

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      Howard Schneider 6 years ago from Parsippany, New Jersey

      Great Hub. I totally agree with you that it is a great thing about different ethnic groups retaining their identities and cultures. It makes for a richer America culturally. These groups slowly become assimilated anyway generation after generation. The diversity of this country is what makes it more innovative and exciting.