What Does It Mean To Be An American

Submitted By love031513
Words: 620
Pages: 3

Cultures & Values

Being American

If you ask a group of people what it means to be an American, you will most definitely get completely different answers. This, I believe, is part of what being an American is all about. We are very diverse. There are so many different cultures in our country and they all hold different beliefs, values, and practices. It is the acceptance of these cultures that makes America, America. Very few things in this country can genuinely be called American. We are extremely reliant on other countries and embrace a majority of there designs and systems with open arms. This is a country of acceptance, freedom, and individualism. America’s individualism in society is the only thing that truly defines a real American. Whether accepted by an individual or not, one religion does not define America. Every city has many different places of worship be it a church, synagogue, or mosaic. It is our first constitutional right to practice what faith we may choose. Even more so, It is those not born in American that truly create it. “86% feel immigrants make the United States more open to new ideas and cultures...”(Straughn, “Sociologist asks what it means to be American”) True Americans embrace what other cultures give to them. We admire their faith and dedication to their religion, although we might not always agree, it is the freedom to practice that gives rise to our patriotism. Over the years we have embraced other cultures so much, to the point America may be oblivious to how much they effect our daily lives.”...some insidious foreign ideas have already wormed their way into his civilization without his realizing what was going on.”(Linton 278) A good portion of the cars we drive come from other countries, as well as the food we eat and even what we eat them with. As american’s we have become so dependent on the cultures we have unknowingly embraced, we cannot pick up a child’s toy with out seeing “Made in China” engraved on the bottom of it. There are very few things now that can be called truly American as nearly everything we use and consume can be traced back to a foreign culture and country. The only thing I believe that truly makes an American, American, is our emphasis on individuality. Immigrants come to our country and are shocked at our lack of a “all for one and one for all” mentality. Those raised in typical American culture focus on how to better themselves, and how their