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The Chinese In All Of Us Analysis

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For a long time I believed cultural assimilation plagued non-native cultures in America. Names became Americanized and people left their native languages at home. It is easy to see how anyone could feel pressure to blend and adapt. Being in a new country and having to learn new things all at once can be overwhelming. Upon reading “The Chinese in All of Us” by Richard Ramirez, I learned that the blending of cultures is not forced. He speaks of multiculturalism and how learning from other cultures is inevitable. It doesn’t matter whether you’re Hispanic or any other nationality because we are what makes America whole. It does not mean that you will lose your culture, pride or traditions. It is possible to blend with others and still maintain…show more content…
I had started school and while I had mostly the same classes as everyone else, there was one that was different. English as a second language was the first step in becoming a fully assimilated American. My experience overall was positive, until classmates began poking fun at those who had not learned English as well as I had. From that point on I resented the fact that bilingual teachers were not staffed. I also resented the need to learn this foreign language in order to be accepted. I struggled with my identity because I felt I had to choose a side, like I was betraying my heritage. It wasn’t until I became an adult that I began to understand what I was taught in school. It was not my teacher’s job to validate my identity but to educate me on why I am an American. Richard Ramirez wrote, “For myself, I like the metaphor of the melting pot. I like it for two reasons. First, its suggestion of pain and there is pain. The school teacher can put a sombrero on my head and tell me to feel proud of my heritage, but I know I am becoming a different person than my father. There is pain in the melting pot” (Ramirez). What this means is that although it may feel as we have to identify with one versus the other, things were not meant to be that way. We are as much the product of our environment and influences as we are the product of our ancestors. It is okay to be different, just as it is okay to practice your…show more content…
When people are forced to assimilate it can cause resentment and maybe less likely to embrace their new surroundings. Being able to practice your culture openly offers an array of people the opportunity to get to know each other. This would ultimately lead to a greater understanding, peace and harmony. While I believe in the notion of a common culture, I believe also in the notion of a dynamic culture. Even while America changes immigrants, the immigrants are changing us. They have always changed us. Assimilation is reciprocal (Ramirez). A common lesson we all share is how to be tolerant. Those who succeed in grasping that subject will be able to exchange ideas and find solutions to real problems. This country was built from diversity, without it where would we be? The answer is nothing and that alone should be enough to spark compassion within each individual because we all face a similar
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