A new America is being born, and it is happening now. It is the America of tomorrow, and what we see today is but a portal into the future of America. It is a portal that stretches both backward and forward, traveling across time. In this new America, our future is connected to our past because memory and hope belong together.
The American experiment has given each new generation of immigrants from around the world the time and freedom to assimilate and evolve and has integrated many cultures, religions, and traditions
Regrettably, from America’s earliest days there has existed a shameful myth that immigrants erode American traditions and values. But that is just a myth. In truth, America shapes immigrants. It always has and it always will. The reality is that the new immigrants who come to America are continuing the long tradition of contributing to their towns and cities and to this country. They are the lifeblood of America!
The American experiment has also encompassed the forced integration of human beings who were captured and brought here against their will. Sadly, this experience has not always worked out so well. One can only hope that in the New America people will become less divided and more empowered to bring about the unstoppable, inevitable demise of racism.
In the new America we will make diversity work for us, not let it destroy and divide us as it has done so often in our past, and continues to do today. America must begin to build coalitions of common interest instead of coalitions of skin color. Americans must also remember that there is NOT only one “authentic” American experience.
We must remember that not every American was born within this country, and not every American grew up speaking English, both realities which challenge the pervasive but mistaken notion of what it means to be an American.
If American history teaches us anything, it is that Americans can adapt to anything and can accomplish everything they want through shared values and compromise. That is why this country must rise up to meet these challenges and why America must evolve into a more welcoming and tolerant society, a society of inter-twining cultures and greater racial and ethnic harmony.
That is the new America I dream about and the America that can become a reality but only if we have the courage to create it. When and if this happens, America will begin for the first time in our 244 years to live out the true promise of the sacred words in our Declaration Of Independence:
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among them are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.”
Until that day…..