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Emrek Barahona

Professor Batty

English 28

08 December 2018

Assimilating in the American Culture

The biggest question that everybody always debates about is that should foreigners

assimilate to the American culture? Adapting to a society like the American culture is needed

because most foreigners need to work and be educate in order to survive in the modern era.

Now let’s take a look at the aspect of understanding the word assimilation. One argument

about by one article mention in “Do We Really Want Immigrants to Assimilate?” by Peter Skerry

unravel that most immigrants don’t even the thought what they want once they come in the

country, in quotes “Yet if assimilation endures as an idea, it is a very confused and muddled one.

“Assimilation” has become part of the liturgy of our civil religion, and like any liturgy, we repeat

it without often pausing to consider what we mean by it. I will argue here that when Americans

say they want immigrants to assimilate, they may think they know what they want” in other

words, Skerry believe that immigrants foreigners don’t know what they want once the foreigner's

assimilation to America because they most foreigners are trying to get out of there country any

way they can. In the check of reality is that the author explains what people in America think

what assimilation means “If you were to ask the average person on the street what is meant by

“assimilation,” he or she would say something about immigrants fitting into American society

without creating undue problems for themselves or for those already here” but, the author
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believes that people don’t really understand the meaning assimilating because people America

have parents that grew up in different countries having diversity in their blood to began with so,

since foreign parents have been assimilating to the American culture to have a better life. The

author goes on to say is nonsense that assimilation is evil “Immigrant leaders and advocates

claim that America is a racist society that will not allow “people of color” to become part of the

mainstream of American life. Alternatively, it is argued that the assimilation of such individuals

into that mainstream is an insidious process that robs them of their history and self-esteem. No

one ever bothers to explain how both claims can be true” in other words assimilating is not bad

because is necessary for foreigners to be ready to make a change once coming to united states

and make a life. In another article explain the similarity in “What Does It Take to ‘Assimilate’ in

America?” by Laila Lalami thoughts about the meaning of assimilating “What does assimilation

mean these days? The word has its roots in the Latin ‘‘simulare,’’ meaning to make similar.

Immigrants are expected, over an undefined period, to become like other Americans” the way it

sounds like there is something wrong being American, assimilating doesn’t mean forgetting

about your own background it means understanding to live in America when it comes to the

consumption to the American culture. People have certain meanings of what it means to be

assimilated to the American culture so, in the article of Lalami gives more in detail “For yet

others, the whole idea of assimilation is wrongheaded, and integration — a dynamic process that

retains the connotation of individuality — is seen as the better model. Think salad bowl, rather

than melting pot: Each ingredient keeps its flavor, even as it mixes with others” in the author

words a salad bowl has a mixer of different knowledge and assimilating to the American won’t

take away your background, in fact, it grows more understanding your own culture and
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American culture because that makes you more adaptable in which is needed when immigrants

want to have a change in lifestyle especially in a different country.

In my argument, I say assimilating have more benefits of providing education and career

jobs in America. Now let’s go back to Mira article “the 'Melting Pot' Is a Mixed Bag” explains

most first generation do get job opportunities but, according to the article explains the next

generation who comes from foreign parents gets more of the advantages than the parents

themselves because the next generation breed gets better career opportunities and are more

educational than their own parents because they are multilingual “Immigrant men with low

education levels are more likely to be employed than their native counterparts. Children and

grandchildren of immigrants working in low-wage jobs tend to climb higher in the labor

market”. Most of the foreigner needed to assimilate to the United States culture in order to get

out of poverty, in this article explains how most Latinos suffered in poverty and most of their

wages from 25 years ago are different now “Report says California Latinos' wages rising but lag

those of non- Latinos” but, according to Golden “CBP report, Latino workers with higher levels

of education have higher hourly earnings” because of parents who send their kids into education

to assimilate to the American society of getting a higher degree jobs are unexpected for Latinos

to have. Including the facts that show “In 2003, the typical Latino worker with a high school

degree earned 42.9 percent more than the typical Latino worker lacking a high school degree”

most Latinos that have a high school diploma have better opportunities when they assimilation

through education by having better wage jobs than those who don’t have a high school diploma.

On the other hand, the United States has given exploitation to students that are foreigners like the

article “A Smart Exception” by David Gergen illustrate legal immigrants who came to the United
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States made important things like Sergey Brin, Jerry Yang, and Pierre Omidyar, “they went on to

start Google, Yahoo!, and eBay”, now according to the article the foreigners who studied in

American have succeeded better “It’s now commonplace to see foreign-born students dominating

U.S. graduate programs in science, math, and technology” in which most do become CEO’s

according to the article. Another thing about assimilation is that most Latinos move to this

country have gained experience of working in the common places in the United States gaining

cultural knowledge on working place and since Gergen did mention on how foreigners learn to

adapt since 1995 “From 1995 to 2005, legal immigrants were CEOs or lead technologists in one

of every four U.S. tech and engineering start-ups and half of those in Silicon Valley. These

companies employed some 450,000 people before the recession hit”. For foreigners who speak

their own language have a chance to assimilate to the American culture by looking at one part of

the quote of “The Amazing Benefits of Being Bilingual” by Gaia Vince clarify “the Amazing

Benefits of Being Bilingual”. The article tells the benefits of bilingual “ Multilingualism has

been shown to have many social, psychological and lifestyle advantages” meaning most

bilingual people have a greater expansion of cultural knowledge, for example, Vince told a story

about how two South African men speak Xhosa and 5 more languages which is amazing attribute

to have when getting job which gives more earnings of wages. It’s been mention “Over time,

different groups of early humans would have found themselves speaking different languages.

Then, in order to communicate with other groups – for trade, travel and so on – it would have

been necessary for some members of a family or band to speak other tongues” the specific jobs

that enquired bilingual is usually pilots or assistance in the airport speaking multilingual

language or even in politics that enquired communicate with politicians from different countries
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or business as well when expanding products around different countries. In more news about

Bilingual jobs like in “Two ways to belong in America” clarity about her having a career job

where she is known for career of psychology related “Mira still lives in Detroit, works in the

Southfield, Mich., school system, and has become nationally recognized for her contributions in

the fields of pre-school education and parent-teacher relationships” Mira has expanded her

assimilation in America.

Every foreigner has the right to go to the United States and make a life there but, can’t

deny the country, although there are forces of laws in foreign policy but if the foreigner wants to

make a living in American society they need to respect the laws that were given to them and if

they want to become a citizen that has the right to assimilate. If the foreigner denies assimilation

than they have no way of living because living in the American culture offers the way of

assimilation and is a choice of an opportunity not by force.

Works Cited

Tanvi Misra. For Immigrants, the 'Melting Pot' Is a Mixed Bag, New York

https://www.citylab.com/life/2015/09/for-immigrants-the-melting-pot-is-a-mixed-bag/40

7698/

Goldeen, Joe. "Report Says California Latinos' Wages Rising but Lag those of Non-
Latinos." Knight Ridder Tribune Business News, Sep 30, 2004, pp. 1. ProQuest,
https://library.lavc.edu:2236/docview/460452778?accountid=40027.

Gergen, David. “A Smart Exception”

https://parade.com/38934/davidgergen/100613-a-smart-exception/

Vince, Gaia. “The Amazing Benefits of Being Bilingual”

http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20160811-the-amazing-benefits-of-being-bilingual
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Mukherjee, Bharati "Two Ways to Belong in America”, New York

2016,file:///C:/Users/embarahona203/Documents/LAVC/English%2028/Two%20Ways%

20to%20Belong%20in%20America%20(1).pdf

Skerry, Peter “Do We Really Want Immigrants to Assimilate?”

https://www.brookings.edu/articles/do-we-really-want-immigrants-to-assimilate/

Lalami, Lailla “What Does It Take to ‘Assimilate’ in America?”, New York

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/01/magazine/what-does-it-take-to-assimilate-in-ameri

ca.html

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