I believe that a lot of our problems in America stem from not identifying ourselves as Americans. We are constantly building barriers for ourselves by labeling ourselves as "white" "African American" "Asian" "Hispanic" when in fact most of us were born and raised in America. I feel like we should start ignoring these titles and start seeing each ourselves and others as Americans. This is not to say that people who weren't born in America or raised in America should be ostracized, as long as they are working individuals who are determined to do the same thing as me (make America a better place for everyone to live) then I am happy to have you here and in my opinion that makes you just as much as an American as anyone else who was born here. I also would like to say that it is important to know where your family came from but at the same time remember where you came from and have some pride in being part of a great country as well. I hope i persuade a few more people who read this to join me in my principles and end the bubbling in of the race portion of government forms, try marking other and writing in American.
I am a Hispanic American who's family immigrated from Colombia. My parents purposely did not move to a Colombian neighborhood in NYC known as Jackson heights because they wanted the children to become part of the greater picture of America. Having grown up to admire this country and the freedoms allowed. For example when I grew up I became an evangelical Christian. In Colombia I would have been ostracized by the family. Here my family didn't like it but they know America is the land where you are free to worship as you see fit. Anyway I think if we decide to divides ourselves by sub-groups and cultures you can become prejudice towards others. I consider myself an American of Colombian Descent. But I think we should get rid of race distinctions in applications. It separates us from the ideal that All men & women are created equal with rights given to them by their creator in the pursuit of life, Liberty and happiness.
Race should not be part of your identity you can still have pride in you're heritage and carry on you're culture but it shouldn't be your identity neither should you're political views or taste preferences it separates us from others and creates a divide which enables hate to grow. These things don't define you neither do the actions of your ancestors or others that share you're race and views. We are individuals we don't need to be defined we are all unique. We are not just a race or a nationality not even just a species. By saying that we are Americans regardless of race is the same as defining ourselves by race. A race is essentially a group of people who have settled a geographic location and adapted to it. American is already a race and will someday be a visually distinctive race based on the demographics of our country.
Studies show that the more associated a person is with a group, the more hateful they are to people they perceive as a threat to said group. This is why tensions often rise between religious groups, countries, and so fourth. When we label ourselves by race, nationality, and religion, it becomes easier to treat people who aren't in our specified group as less-than-human.
It's okay to be proud of your race and culture and where you came from. It's fun to learn about other cultures. Your race is what makes you, you. It's just a part of you that you can't change. But the issue here is when people use race to be prejudice and to discriminate. A person's race should not matter when making opinions of them. We need to be able to see race, but not let that be a factor in how we treat each other.
The reality of our world is that race exist. It's all too covenient (but hardly practical) to claim that no American should define himself by his race, his age, his gender, his religion, the sources of his ethnicity but the truth is that these can't just be wiped away. People, including Americans of every stripe, need to start practicing respect and tolerance. Telling us to forget about every detail that makes us unique and different is hardly a practical way of dealing with a diverse world with diverse people.
Here, in the United States, what unifies all of us is the fact that we are Americans and we should respect that. This should be used as something that prevents us from hating each other and making violence against each other. But we must ALL also practice tolerance and respect, because the obvious fact is that we are each all of us unique, with different backgrounds and with something different to contribute to the world. Nature did not make the world homogeneous because that just doesn't work in the construction and maintenance of complicated biological ecosystems, where every organism fills a niche.
The same truth can also be applied to human society. The maintenance and growth of a human community requires it to have diverse people with different and unique set of skills. It simply will not work out unless different people have different contributing roles in the community. Differences with race and color are unavoidable, and yet this can all be used to teach us important lessons about tolerance and respect; all of us have a great deal to learn from this!
The fact is many things can be used to differentiate us, such as height, age, size, handicap. Differences exist whether we like it or not. The solution is mutual respect and tolerance.