American Idiot

Nationalistic views are hurting the social structure of America

Nationalistic views are hurting the social structure of America

Ignorance in America is at an all-time high. This can be caused by many factors, but a huge blame for ignorance stems from the ever-growing world of social media. Until the majority of Americans stop basing their opinions on what they read from some random guy on Twitter, the ability to think for oneself will become significantly more difficult.

A huge problem with ignorance is when it leads to racism; a problem shown clearly by outrage at this year’s Miss America winner, Nina Davuluri.

Minutes after Davuluri, the first woman of Indian descent to be crowned, claimed the 2014 Miss America title, outrage flowed on many social media sites. Comments ranged from calling Davuluri a terrorist to some people just being flat-out racist. One tweet even read, “9/11 was four days ago and she gets Miss America?!”

Unfortunately, the hatred didn’t stop there. Many others who claimed they were “not racist” simply put that they thought it was wrong because “This is America.” (Funny how whenever someone starts off a comment by saying “I’m not racist”, it always ends up being completely racist.)With all of these hateful comments posted by so many, it’s shocking to realize just how many people living in the 21st century actually still think in such a manner.

When you sit down and really think about it, what is an American anyway? Is it just a white man who was born here and works on Wall Street, or is it a Hispanic man who came to America to work for 12 hours a day and make next to nothing, just to stay alive. I’m willing to bet that 75% of most Americans would say the white male is the true American. Not because he is richer, not because he has higher social status, but because he was born here.

With this idea in mind, people calling Davuluri “un-American” are wrong; there’s no other way to describe them. She was born here and is an American citizen, but everyone just assumes that any dark-skinned woman of Asian descendent is obviously not American. It’s as if some Americans believe they actually have more of a right to be here since their family has been living here for generations as opposed to an immigrant. Is getting the title of “American” only reserved for those whose ancestors came to Ellis Island in the early 20th century? I guess I missed this cut-off.

What most people fail to realize is that America is a country that was FOUNDED BY IMMIGRANTS. This continent wasn’t just sitting by itself for 1400 years until good old Christopher Columbus came over to explore it. Native Americans had been living here for over 1000 years when Europeans came over and started pushing them further and further west. Not only were they forced out of their homes, but many were also killed, with numbers in the millions.

It’s even been said that Hitler got his idea of concentration camps by the Americans’ treatment of the Native Americans, but we never hear about that in our history books. All we hear time and time again is just how wonderful and perfect the United States of America is. With this many people upset over a Miss America who traces her roots back to India, I’d say we’re far from perfect.

A strong sense of nationalism has become too much of a problem for the U.S. It had led to racism and a false sense of what being patriotic truly means. America has turned into the annoying, egotistical friend everyone has who won’t shut up about himself but that you stay friends with because he can back you up in a fight. In reality, we shouldn’t be boasting about anything with the way we treat each other.

This country has the potential to be one of the greatest countries in the world. People are so caught up in wanting the U.S. to be economically and military great that they sometimes forget just how important diversity is in our nation. If anyone honestly believes that America would be the same if white males from England ran this country from the end of the Revolutionary war to 2013 without allowing anymore immigration, they are out of their minds.

Great thinkers, engineers, scientists, authors, musicians, actors, businessmen, you name it, have all come about because of diversity in this country. I believe that anyone who wants to live in America and make it better is just as much of an American as anyone who was born here or gained citizenship.

America is the land of the free, with liberty and justice FOR ALL; let’s start acting that way.