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Saturday, June 15, 2013

The Melting Pot

  America is called the melting pot. Many persons from the nations on the planet settle here choosing the American way of life. The "original residents"whom Christopher Columbus mistakenly called Indians  thus so because  he had believed he reached the Indies and was meeting "Indians".  North America he believed was the Indies. Having no guide book he can not be faulted for his misinformation of course because in those days, 'the world was flat'.

  Fast forward to today and the name  Indian still sticks to all the tribes and nations, along with the 'politically correct'  title, Native American. A melting pot label for the peoples  found here by the Europeans. These Indigenous people are further disrespected by not being afforded the same label standards as other peoples in this melting pot.  Nationality is watered down to deny the existence of separate nations residing here before it became the United States of America. Why are they not called the Cherokee Nation of North America, or the Sioux Nation of North America, for that matter, what was this placed called before it was named after Amerigo Vespucci? does anyone know?

  Why we are not all called Americans is bizarre, we even segregate the Southerners from the Northerners.

  People settling here from Hungary are called Hungarian American, China - Chinese American, Italy - Italian American, and so on. But, has anyone called themselves English American? I know many "English Americans" but have never heard that label.

  Back to the American Indians aka Native Americans, why are they not called Sioux American and Cherokee American, as well as Blackfoot American. Are they Americans? Are they governed by the laws of the United States, do they pay taxes, are they represented? Native Americans or Indians, or the separate nations of the Native Americans culture and history are the least taught nationalities. Americans with other roots seem to have no interest in the culture of their neighbors whose land 'we' stole, are we trying to assuage our responsibility by ignoring their existence?  There are some individuals who stand out, Geronimo! a lone chief astride his horse atop a mountain. 

  Still the question begs, why not American Blackfoot and American Italian. If roots are relevant, are we not first American, is not our allegiance to this nation and not the nation of our roots. Do we not fight to protect our home not the home our ancestors came from?

The story of the peoples the European settlers met are lost on the wind. Like the tidal wave washing away everything in its path, the land we call home has lost its history, and no one cares, or if they do, they keep their thoughts to themselves.

We celebrate Memorial Day and Veterans Day, Columbus Day, St Patrick's Day, and Thanksgiving Day but nowhere do we pay homage to the 'first' Americans, and the rest of us are first foreigners, then Americans.

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