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Christopher Wilson’s Blog Post 10/03

After listening to Dr. Bezio’s podcast regarding the relationship the U.S. has with immigrants, I feel frustrated that I do not know how diversity and the representation thereof will look like in the future. Anzaldua’s excerpts from Borderlands points out how aggressive assimilation into the white, English-speaking culture of the U.S. can lead to the erasure of ethnic tongues and people, which many African Americans have already experienced as a result of the Atlantic Slave Trade. Also, Anzaldua stresses that the key to fostering a healthy “melting pot” is for both the dominant culture and the other minority cultures to work towards cross-cultural communication and collaboration. In cross-cultural communication and collaboration, both groups of people have to learn a language that is different from the one they commonly speak at home. For instance, a person who speaks English 100% of the time should actively listen and learn how to understand Spanish and vice versa. Additionally, I do acknowledge that there are shortcomings in achieving cross-cultural communication and collaboration. The primary hurdle being that how Southern black people speak English is going to be radically different from how Western black people speak English. In this sense, is it realistic for our society to educate the entire human population in many languages that differ from their native tongue?

On another note, I am happy to hear the truth behind the value immigrants bring to our society. One, immigrants who become entrepreneurs in the U.S. create jobs and contribute to the American economy. Two, immigrants take jobs that most of us born in America feel too privileged to even consider. If we look at the work that janitors to factory workers have to do daily at low wage rates, especially amid COVID-19, they actually play a vital role in making sure that our workspaces are correctly cleaned and that our manufactured items are crafted with care. In response, there are actions that our society can take to address the images that the federal government and the media use to portray immigrants. The first step: all of us need to stop assuming that the actions or responses of one individual wholly translates to the experiences of all. Instead, we need to create a system of cultural and ethnic close-reading so that we can understand and better serve our immigrants who come to this country in hopes of achieving the idyllic American Dream.

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