An incident occurred in a small town, Burlington, Wisconsin. A young teacher was being asked by her students about the shooting of Jacob Blake, a young black man a few towns over. She turned it into a week-long lesson that was unbiased asking important questions like “how can we dismantle systemic racism,” and “what is the black lives matter movement?” She received huge amounts of backlash from parents claiming she was “indoctrinating their kids.” Many parents even wanted her fired for her curriculum. The teacher claimed it’s a human rights issue and should not be political, as even she voted for Trump in the 2016 election.
November 28, 2022
How can racial bias and prejudices be prevented by teaching them in a school curriculum? At what age would this be most beneficial?
America Means: Complex Diversity
When it comes to the topic of America, some people think about violence. There have been so many shootings, and attacks within the country, that when outsiders look at us that is all that they see. According to Ibram Kendi, “American” means the denial that our country is flawed. Kendi states in source 3, “We must stop the heartbeat of denial and revive America to the thumping beat of truth. The carnage has no chance of stopping until the denial stops. This is not who we are must become, in the aftermath of the attack on the U.S. Capitol: This is precisely who we are. And we are ashamed. And we are aggrieved at what we’ve done, at how we let this happen. But we will change. We will hold the perpetrators accountable. We will change policy and practices. We will radically root out this problem. It will be painful. But without pain there is no healing.” In other words, Kendi believes that in order for America to change and to truly be free, we need to change the way that we respond to situations. Saying that a school shooting, for example, is “unamerican” is not going to help people realize that we need good gun control. Instead, telling people that we acknowledge what has happened, and will work towards doing better would have a greater impact on people.
Source 2, a speech given by Amanda Gorman, expands on the argument of source 3, highlighting more flaws of America. This source in particular explains some of the problems and obstacles that African Americans face on the daily. Gorman says “O, let my land be a land where Liberty. Is crowned with no false patriotic wreath, but opportunity is real, and life is free, equality is in the air we breathe. (There’s never been equality for me, Nor freedom in this “homeland of the free”).” This quote is explaining how unfair the United States is, even though it is labeled as free, many people, especially people of color are being targeted everyday for no reason other than their skin color. This is expanding on source 3 because source 3 talks about violence throughout the nation while source 2 talks about violence against a group of people. The information found in Amanda Gorman’s “The Hill We Climb” speech reinforce the need for reform throughout the entire country.
Source 5 is an essay written by Jose Antonio Vargas. In this essay he talks about his personal experience being undocumented, and the stuggles behind it. Vargas writes “From the moment I wrote my first article for the student paper, I convinced myself that having my name in print — writing in English, interviewing Americans — validated my presence here.” Here he is talking about when he found out he was undocumented. He felt like he had to prove himself in order to live in the United States. Likewise to source 2, Vargas explains how he has to be cautious about who he surrounds himself with since they could have reported him, and ultimately got him deported. Source 2 highlights the problems facing African Americans in America, while source 5 highlights the problems that undocumented people are facing in America. Vargas has a different perspective on America because he is forced to. He cannot just live his life the way that he wants to, he has to be aware of everything around him. Life is different for him, and he knows that. He just wants to make the best of it and bring awareness to this ongoing issue.
In my opinion, America means different things. It is so diverse with so many different people, you cannot just give it one definition. I think that it means something different for everybody since everyone has different experiences. I would say that America means loss, violence, happiness, and home. My gender and ethnicity affect my experience in America because I see the injustices being made against us everyday. There are so many bad people in this country that have ill intentions. I find the arguments above to be truthful. This country has many flaws that not everybody sees, and that is part of the problem. American literature is really in everything. In the issues of our country, in the speeches that we hear, even in books that we read. It surrounds us. It incorporates so many different things that I couldn’t give it a singular definition. The Great Gatsby shows higher and lower class, There There gives a story on Native Ameircans, and THUG tells a story on something that constantly happens every day. Something in common is all of them are guns. Khalil gets shot with a gun, Octavio and his Gang bring guns to the Powwow, and Wilson shoots Gatsby with a gun. This correlates with all of the gun violence that we have in this country. Being a young person in America is eye opening. We are able to see all of these issues and problems that are in our country that adults are too busy to realize. It is interesting because we are the future of the country, and can actually do something to change everything for the better.
Denial is the Heartbeat of America by Ibram Kendi
The Hill We Climb by Amanda Gorman
My Life as an Undocumented Immigrant by Jose Antonio Vargas
Diversity and Strength in America
What does it mean to be an American? That is a great question because there are so many perspectives and answers to this question. To me being an American means that you have freedom. We often take our freedom for granted not realizing how lucky we are because not everyone has much freedom like us. The U.S. is a great place to grow up because everyone is equal for the most part. Some main American beliefs and values include democracy, freedom, equality. Many people come to America because they have a dream. Some people want to become rich and famous while some want to just have a better life than they did before. Americans fear the unknown. For example, some of us fear immigrants because we have been told they are terrorists, murders, or rapists. Even though this is not true some of us still chose to believe it because we don’t know any better. Those of us who are slightly educated know that this is not the case for the most part. America has overcome so many obstacles.
For example, 9/11 was an attack on the Twin Towers. The Twin Towers represented how great and strong America was. In an article called How New York City Rebuilt Anew After Its Darkest Day by Alina Selyukh, she talks about the mayor of New York City, Rudy Giuliani promised that “We’re not only going to rebuild, we’re going to come out of this stronger than we were before.” The 9/11 attacks impacted many people but we bounced back so after. America has also overcome war and we are “Back to Back World War Champs”. One of the greatest challenges we are facing right now is public shootings. They are becoming more and more prevalent in our society and now that they happen so much there could be one and we wouldn’t even know about it because they happen so often they are not even breaking news anymore.
I think the biggest influence on American culture is social media. For example, in an article called There were over 12,000 poison control calls for people eating laundry pods last year by Christopher Ingram from the Washington Post, he talks about how this dangerous trend became popular. Eating these was one of the dumbest trends ever but people did it to gain online fame. Some other examples of the American dream include song lyrics, the constitution, and our free unrestricted media.
In a video and article called, What Does America Stand For? We Asked Teenagers by Anna North of the New York Times. Everyone around the country had different views on what does America stand for. Some of the teens were very conservative and some were very liberal. It shows that America is very diverse and everyone has a different perspective. America is an amazing place with an array of different people.
Ingraham, Christopher. “Analysis | There Were over 12,000 Poison Control Calls for People Eating Laundry Pods Last Year.” The Washington Post, WP Company, 16 Jan. 2018, www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2018/01/16/there-were-over-10000-poison-control-calls-for-people-eating-laundry-pods-last-year/?utm_term=.467ee31f027f.
North, Anna. “What Does America Stand For?” The New York Times, The New York Times, 23 Aug. 2017, www.nytimes.com/video/opinion/100000005313156/what-does-america-stand-for.html.
Selyukh, Alina. “How New York City Rebuilt Anew After Its Darkest Day.” NPR, NPR, 8 Sept. 2016, www.npr.org/2016/09/08/492960193/how-new-york-city-rebuilt-anew-after-its-darkest-day.
Photo Link: http://thethinkering.com/sites/default/files/styles/article_image_full_node/public/field/image/diversity.jpg?itok=h0Cv9pWQ
The “Land of the Free” Doesn’t Exactly Feel Like It
Americans are supposed to live in freedom, we toss our flags to the wind and shout it from our rooftops. But we sleep on the issues. We let all the unrest bubble and burn at the bottom of the pot. “There’s nothing we can do,” I’ve heard people whisper. “That’s just the way it is.” That’s not true. We are fighting and scratching and biting everyday for our right to live. If this is truly our country, if this is the place that crawled off of the battlefield at the end of the revolution shouting that we’re free, then we can always change something. We were built on freedom, but some don’t acknowledge that everyone deserves the right to be safe and happy. In other words, everyone deserves the right to be free. So what’s stopping them? Well, to put it simply, we are. Regrettably, the same things that made our country what it was are the things that are tearing us apart. Even though we’ve put some rules in place,we’re still not there.
The preamble of the Constitution starts with the words “We the people”. We the people. Not “We the able-bodied white straight Christian people who believe that we’re the superior race because we were told so by our parents and are clearly too naive to even question that.” No, it’s “We the people.” While not everyone who is able-bodied, white, straight, and Christian is like that, that’s still a thing we see coming to light in this recent day and age. If we truly want freedom, we need to accept that others are different. That some people aren’t white, and some people aren’t straight, and some people are Muslim, and some people are disabled.
There’s also freedom of religion. In the first amendment it’s stated “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…” Some people believe that this is a Christian country, but that isn’t true. Muslims, Jews, Christians, and all the others are allowed to live in America.The first amendment clearly states it. Even if there was a religion that was focused around killing people or something, the people in that religion wouldn’t be arrested for their religion, they would be arrested for committing murder. Wars over religion shouldn’t be happening. It’s like if someone asks if your favorite color is blue, and you tell them that no, it’s red, and then they get mad at you and tell you that all people whose favorite color is red should have been killed off by Hitler in World War II. So yeah, freedom of religion is important if we don’t want half of the planet dying off because they don’t all believe in the same thing.
Our history shows that we’ve always wanted freedom. When we were on the brink of war with Britain after they imposed unfair taxes on us, Patrick Henry delivered the famous line “…give me liberty, or give me death!” This line then spurred the people to action to take our freedom from the British. What’s life if you’re not free? When Martin Luther King stood up for African American people across the nation, gaining all sorts of rights for them, they all had that beautiful taste of freedom. Three years ago, when gay marriage was legalized, people rejoiced because they were finally able to celebrate their love on paper, in a ceremony, surrounding by friends and family.
So with all of this, I believe that Americans believe in freedom. But many have a skewed idea of it. They think that owning guns with limited controls is freedom. They believe that keeping America white, straight, and Christian is freedom. They can’t see the other side of the story. American culture is wars. A war made to cut us off from those who loom over us. A war made to free people that have been beaten into submission. One kind of pointless war that involved a tornado and the white house burning down. Wars that we were roped into unintentionally as the world turned and fought and we were caught in the crossfire. A war in order to prove that those with darker skin deserve those rights talked about in the Constitution. Wars to keep us all safe. Wars fought with weapons and wars fought with words. Those wars are the ones we’re focused on today. We’re in a war right now, and we’re fighting to get out. We’re always fighting for that state of absolute freedom to live against people who think someone is lesser than them because of their skin color, or religion, or their gender or sexuality. So I know we’re going to win this war, because people don’t give up their spirit so easily.
“Patrick Henry.” Terms of Estrangement: Who Were the Sons of Liberty? : The Colonial Williamsburg Official History & Citizenship Site, www.history.org/almanack/people/bios/biohen.cfm.
LII Staff. “First Amendment.” LII / Legal Information Institute, Legal Information Institute, 10 Oct. 2017, www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/first_amendment.
“Preamble We the People.” National Constitution Center – Constitutioncenter.org, National Constitution Center, constitutioncenter.org/interactive-constitution/preamble.
America is Diverse, but is it Equal?
Many Americans believe that America is a place of freedom and equality, no matter what background a person comes from. The culture and foods have been adapted from other countries to create a distinct culture of America. For example, there is no official language or religion for the United States. Everyone is allowed to believe in what they want and celebrate what they choose. That is what makes it different from other countries in the world. However, sports and media are some things that are established in America and are popular to many people. Most people are interested in playing or watching sports, as “the United States are a sports-minded country,” (Zimmerman). Also, many people pay attention to the media. Some of the biggest movies and television shows are created in Hollywood, and is known worldwide. Zimmerman states from the Department of Commerce that “the United States comprises one-third of the worldwide media and entertainment industry,”
According to Zimmerman on the information from the Census Bureau, “a new immigrant moves to the United States every 33 seconds,” America has a unique, diverse culture, but there is still social injustice present today.
In Sonia Sanchez’s poem, she states “we the people” many times and that “this is the time for you and me,” (Sanchez). She shows that it is everyone’s time, no matter who you are, since the constitution states that it is all of the people. It means no one is discluded because of race, religion, or any other differences. In the poem by Langston Hughes, he has a similar idea. The title, “Let America be America Again,” shows from the beginning that America is different from what it used to be. He believes that America allowed him to dream his dreams. On the contrary, he says that “it was never America for me,” (Hughes). because of his race and the difficulties he faced. Also, he says America is “the land that never has been yet,” because there was never a point in time when everyone was equal.
Most people come to America for a new beginning and opportunity to have freedom and equality. Although equality and justice have gotten better than before, there are still many things to work on. We are on the right track to becoming a better country as a whole.
Hughes, Langston. “Let America Be America Again.” Poem Hunter, 1935, https://www.poemhunter.com/poems/america/page-1/32567/ Accessed 1 Oct. 2018.
Sanchez, Sonia. “Poem for July 4, 1994.” Poets, 1994, https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/poem-july-4-1994-0 Accessed 1 Oct. 2018.
Zimmerman, Kim Ann. “American Culture: Traditions and Customs of the United States.” Live Science, 13 Jul. 2017, https://www.livescience.com/28945-american-culture.html Accessed 1 Oct. 2018.
Photo from youth voices media library.
Why Diversity is STILL an American Strength
Diversity has existed in America since its inception. America is the land of “give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses”(Lazarus), the land of opportunity for those in need of refuge. This has led to a very diverse group of people inhabiting our country. However, in recent years, people have discussed the idea that diversity is harming more than it is helping. Basically, a lack of commonalities in groups of people can cause less interaction with others in a community, creating a separation between people from different backgrounds (Goldberg). While there is strong evidence to support this claim, there is also evidence supporting that the contributions that the vast backgrounds of American people have made our lives in America much better and having a diverse set of ideas will bring us forward. It is a defining factor as Americans and is something that needs to be a positive aspect in order for out country to work properly. As John F. Kennedy said, “Assimilating different people makes the country better not because it’s easy, but because it’s hard”(qtd. in Smith).
While there is evidence about American diversity’s negative impact, there is still strong evidence pertaining to the positive impact. Diversity in the workplace heavily affects the economic world. Many studies have found that “diversity in the business world unlocks innovation and drives market growth” (Burrows, Mafinezam). A 2008 Current Population Survey found that immigrants “account for 29 percent of the growth in the workforce from 1995 to 2008” (Burrows, Mafinezam). The increase in immigration increases diversity in the workforce has been substantially helpful economically.
The definition of American values differs greatly when it comes to individuals in the nation. What one American considers to be important American values may be different than that of another American. So, where do we find that middle ground? I think a great place to look would be America’s diversity, which is a value that America was built on and something that we need to work with instead of against in order to make our country to a place where all can live safely and happily.
Burrows, Matthew. Mafinezam, Alidad. “Diversity is America’s 21st Century Strength.” Huffpost, 20 Aug. 2014, https://www.huffingtonpost.com/mathew-j-burrows/diversity-is-americas-21s_b_5695593.html
Goldberg, Jonah. “What if diversity isn’t America’s strength?” Los Angeles Times.
Lazarus, Emma. “The New Colossus” Emma Lazarus: Selected Poems and Other Writings. Broadview Press, 2002. Print.
Smith, Noah. “Diversity is an American Strength, Not Weakness.” Bloomberg. https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-09-13/diversity-is-an-american-strength-not-weakness
What Do We Believe in?
What exactly is American creed? American creed is subjective; it is based on the individual’s cultural background, personal experiences, and beliefs, amongst other factors. As a Korean-American, my unique interpretation of America’s system of values is based upon the idea that anyone can succeed with dedication. I would define America’s values with these three: equality, opportunity and diversity.
It is debatable whether equality exists in America considering minority groups are often neglected. Even though we cannot definitively say that America has achieved complete equality, it is a fundamental value that has been highlighted throughout history. According to the Declaration of Independence, “All men are created equal”(US 1776). This statement demonstrates how the United States was created upon the basis of equality. In addition, William Tyler Page asserted in the American Creed’s document which was accepted by the United States House of Representatives that America is “established upon those principles of freedom, equality, justice, and humanity for which American patriots sacrificed their lives and fortunes”.
Opportunity and the American Dream come to my mind when I think of America. In the past, people around the world immigrated to the United States with the mindset that with hard work, success was guaranteed. That is the old American dream. According to Keuilian, the new American Dream is the “entrepreneurial journey that is unlike anything that has existed before”. He states that it is easier than before to start as an entrepreneur in America. He shows how lots of opportunities can be found in America in business areas.United States of America is a place full of opportunities.
In recent years, however, people refer to the United States as a salad bowl instead of the traditional metaphorical melting pot. The term “salad bowl” describes America very well because diverse cultures blend to form one great nation while individuals maintain their own identities and shapes. Like a salad, America consists of many cultures and values. According to Keating and Karklis, diversity is increasing throughout the United States of America. The statistics depicts how diversity is a big part of America- that is continuing to grow in importance.
Equality, opportunity and diversity: this is the American creed. The United States of America couldn’t be accurately explained without referencing these values. These values are not only America’s fundamental values but are also values that we should live by as Americans.
Keating, Dan, and Laris Karklis. “Where the Country Is Becoming More Diverse.” The Washington Post, WP Company, 25 Nov. 2016, www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/national/how-diverse-is-america/?noredirect=on.
Keuilian, Bedros. “Why America Is Still the Land of Opportunity.” Entrepreneur, Entrepreneur, 14 Mar. 2018, www.entrepreneur.com/article/310208.
Page, William Tyler. “The American’s Creed.” Ushistory.org, Independence Hall Association, 1917, www.ushistory.org/documents/creed.htm.
image from: https://www.thenation.com/article/american-dream/
Oakland is Diverse
Oakland is Diverse
By Elizabeth Gonzalez Hinojosa
“Oakland is one of the most diverse metropolitan areas in the U.S. — it’s now 34 percent White, 28 percent Black, 25 percent Latino and 17 percent Asian” (NPR). This states how Oakland is one of the most diverse communities and as you continue to read you’ll find out what keeps Oakland diverse and unified. What are the events that divide or unite Oakland? To maintain a positive, diverse city it is important to continue having community events, and support for our teams and one another.
Dia De Los Muertos Festival
A really important festival that supports our diverse city is Dia De Los Muertos which takes place in Fruitvale. The Fruitvale historically and currently is Oakland’s Latino neighborhood. This festival happens yearly on the Day of the Dead, and its purpose is to celebrate and honor those who have passed away. Many different people come to the festival to see how people from different cultures celebrate. The festival has people who come perform folklorico dances, or aztec dances, and others set up altars for their loved ones who have passed away. Many people from the Oakland community, including myself, come and celebrate this day with everyone else. In a video from KTVU News they interviewed Chris Iglesias who is the CEO, The Unity Council from Oakland and he said, “Over 50,00 people from the community come out to celebrate” (Iglesias). Additionally in another article I read it stated, “Oakland was named the most diverse city in the country with a population less than 400,000” (Pulley). This illustrates that one fourth of the community comes together to celebrate this day. The community takes the time and effort to be able to know each other and build community with everyone. Amid all the people I interviewed during my winter break, Moncerrat Gonzalez, who has lived in Oakland her whole life and has attended public schools in Oakland to receive her education, attends the Dia De Los Muertos festival every year in Fruitvale. She points out that, “Living in a diverse community is a positive thing because you are more aware of other cultures and can learn from them” (Gonzalez). Her statement connects to El Dia De Los Muertos Festival because the whole Oakland community is welcomed there and many people from different ethnicities and races come and learn different traditions from different cultures for this day. This proves how having festivals like the one from El Dia De Los Muertos brings the community together. Knowing that Gonzalez has attended this festival and said that being aware and learning from other cultures brought her more into the community and helped her build better relationships with people within her community no matter if they come from another culture.
Additionally, sports teams also bring the Oakland community together. For example, the Warriors and the Raiders are the teams that bring the Oakland community together. In an article about the Warriors parade it states, “We have to come support, show our love to them” (Baldassari). This does not only show how the community was brought together through the Warriors parade, it also shows how our community shows support to one another. In an article about the Raiders by Jose Fermoso he wrote about the way he grew up in Oakland, he points out, “I grew up in church, which is segregated. [But being a Raiders fan] was transformative and beautiful in a way that stays with me” (Fermoso). This explains how because of the way Fermoso grew up he felt separated from the Oakland community but because he was a Raiders fan he felt more included into the Oakland family. Another interesting comment from Fermoso about the Raiders was, “the Raiders … I’ve never been a part of another entity that was as inclusive. Didn’t matter your age, economic status, or race. For three glorious hours, we’re family” (Fermoso). This does not only show that Fermoso felt part of the Oakland family, it also shows how inclusive Oakland is. The sentence that stood out to me from the quote was, “Didn’t matter your age, economic status, or race”. This sentence pointed out how inclusive and loving people are. Being a Raiders fan brought the community together and pushed away all the ageism, classism, and racism. Others may argue that the Raiders and Warriors are dividing the community since they are leaving Oakland. This might be the case because as Fermosos said he felt more part of the community because of the Raiders team, once they leave, the Oakland community might divide up since the Raiders and Warriors won’t be there anymore for them to go and support as a community.
Another big unifying event that happens in Oakland is First Friday. It happens every friday of the month and it takes place on Telegraph Avenue from West Grand to 27th Street. In an article from NPR News where they talked about this event, Meraji said, “ I was, walking with hordes of people, eating food truck grub, popping in and out of hip bars and art galleries” (Meraji). This illustrates how this person was able to bond more with people from his community which is a positive outcome. The purpose of all these community events is for the community to build a stronger relationship or to even meet other people that come from other communities. Meraji has lived in Oakland for about 10 years. Which means that the Oakland community has shown improvement over the last 10 years because 10 years ago we would have events like these but now have these type of community events happening every first friday of the month.
Amongst, all the people I interviewed throughout my winter break was Rosario Gomez. She is a mother of 3 boys and has been living in Oakland for more than 13 years. During the interview Gomez said, “My diverse community would accept and support anyone, without any problems or issues ; we would have several events every year where everyone is welcome” (Gomez). This stood out to me because when I was creating the questions I thought to myself, “What is something important for a diverse community?’ and Gomez talked about community events, which I hadn’t thought about. Gomez’s response connects back to First Friday because this is an event that happens every first friday of the month. Community events are an important contribution for a diverse community because these events are what bring the community closer and through these events the community shows support to one another. Because of these events the community members are able to meet each other and create bonds with one another which are important.
In conclusion, to continue having a positive diverse city it is important to continue having community events, and support for our teams and one another as well. By having community events we will learn and create a bond with one another. Additionally, we need to continue showing support for each other and our teams because this will keep Oakland diverse and unified.
Baldassari, Erin. “Warriors Parade: Hundreds of Thousands Party in Downtown Oakland.” The Mercury News, The Mercury News, 16 June 2017, www.mercurynews.com/2017/06/15/warriors-parade-expected-to-draw-a-million-or-more-fans-to-downtown-oakland/.
This article shares different information about the Warriors parade in Oakland. For example it informed me about the parade’s population and the audiences reaction to the parade. This is a trustful source because this is a source that a very large amount of people look at which means it is more reliable source since it is more likely to be telling the truth to the people.
Fermoso, Jose. “The Raiders helped unite the divisions in Oakland. What happens when they leave?” The Guardian, Guardian News and Media, 11 Aug. 2017, www.theguardian.com/sport/blog/2017/aug/11/oakland-raiders-move-las-vegas-nfl-fans-city-impact.
Fermoso explains how because of the way he grew up he was separated from the Oakland community but because of being a raiders fan he was able to become more part of the Oakland community like the rest of the raiders fans. I believe this is a credible source because it contains first hand information. Also this evidence is credible because since the information is current it makes it more truthful.
Gonzalez, Moncerrat. “Diversity Interview .” 28 Dec. 2017.
This is a young person who has lived in Oakland and assisted a public school her whole life. She is a credible source because she has lived in Oakland which means she has experienced living in one of most diverse community. The interview was about their perspective in living in a diverse community.
Gomez, Rosario. “Diversity Interview .” 29 Dec. 2017.
Rosario has lived in Oakland for more than 15 years and has kids that are getting their education in an Oakland public school as well. She has moved houses several times but has chosen to stay in the Oakland community. She is a credible source because she would be telling the truth about her personal experiences because she would want t be heard so people can change their actions to make Oakland a better community for everyone to feel welcomed in.
Ktvu. “BAY AREA PEOPLE Oakland Dia de los Muertos Festival.” KTVU, www.ktvu.com/community/214758723-video.
In this video it is shown how people from all across the united states celebrate this day and unite to honor those who have passed away. This is a credible source because it shows the interviews right there and it shows live videos from all the different celebrations. This is a trustful source because since many people look at this news they would not want to give their community false information.
Meraji, Shereen Marisol. “Seeking Oakland’s Soul In The ‘New Oakland’.” NPR, NPR, 17 Apr. 2013, www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2013/04/17/177513003/seeking-oaklands-soul-in-the-new-oakland.
This article is about the First Friday Event that happens in Oakland and that everyone is welcomed to. In this source the author compares how Oakland use to be and how it is now. He explains all of the many different ways in which the Oakland community has improved. This is a trustworthy source because it is not from a very long time ago which means that the information is still very current.
Pulley, Anna. “Oakland Named the Most Diverse City in America.” East Bay Express, East Bay Express, 16 Jan. 2018, www.eastbayexpress.com/CultureSpyBlog/archives/2014/12/17/oakland-named-the-most-diverse-city-in-america.
This article informs the different benefits there is to living in a Oakland since it is the most diverse city. They use graphs, pictures and statics to prove their arguments. The evidence they use is from current events which is one of the reasons why this is a credible source.
Unity Through Diveristy
323 Million people all live in one country, and we may use fences, tape, and walls to divide ourselves, but there will always be roads, bridges, and connections that unify us as a people and as a country. America values many things but some of the most important are free speech for all, unity with love, as well as diversity.
According to the First amendment every American has the right to free speech. This means that whether everyone, or no one agrees with their opinion they have the right to share it and not only that but their opinion must be respected. “We have to allow extremists to speak because freedom of speech is the foundation which defines the university” (Hayes 13). Not only is free speech the foundation for our universities but for our entire country. Therefore we can not restrict that right just for certain people or for certain things because then it gets very confusing where that line is drawn. Deciding who gets certain rights and who does not, divides us as a country even farther and we can not afford that. This country has been, and always will be about togetherness. The first 3 words in the constitution are “We the People,” it does not say we the whites, blacks, Mexicans, and Jews. Because this “country is for unity their hands are joined together there is hope in their eyes” (Dikeni). This line perfectly describes America beautifully. We are not trying to be more divided but rather more united, standing together as one, with hope for the future. This idea of unity is not a new concept or a foreign idea, this has been a central theme for quite some time as noted by the National Review.
“The United States steadily evolved to define Americans by their shared values, not by their superficial appearance” (Hanson 12). This is not something we are striving for in the distant future, it is an old value, a founding principle even, that we are striving to maintain. We do not classify the US as a place where 50% of people want more government and the others want less, no we say we are a country that all wants freedom.
America this, America that, Freedom this, Freedom that. The old fashioned boring argument that America is about an unwarranted sense of Nationalism and Freedom. There is more to these great 50 states. Here we identity not by our differences, but rather our similarities, meaning our values. In the United States of America we value and believe that free speech is a g-d given right, unity is what makes us whole, and diversity is what makes us, us.
Hanson, Victor Davis. “America: History’s Exception.” National Review, National Review, 9 June 2016,
Hayes, Dennis. Professor of Education, University of Derbyaz . “Even Extremists Have a Right to Freedom of Speech on Campus.” The Conversation, The Conversation, 26 Nov. 2014,
wDikeni, Sandile. “‘Love Poem for My Country’ by Sandile Dikeni.” African Heritage, Afrolegends, 30 Apr. 2014,
Differences Should be Accepted and Celebrated
I Believe that our differences should be accepted and celebrated
How is everything in the universe categorized? Each holding unique and individual traits, yet connected through experiences and environmental factors, I believe diversity should be celebrated.
I believe our differences are what make us stronger. Conformity is never something I’ve appreciated. It demolishes creativity, and as a mechanism to keep people safe out of fear, it ends up imprisoning expression. I believe everyone takes a different meaning away from life, and no two people experience an occurrence the same way. This is what makes us such a complex community with timeless social changes.
I believe Ignorance is the cause for a lack of peace. Old values can not be followed strictly to expect change in innovation. I believe people must learn and accept others to grow as a society. I believe one’s sexuality, gender, ethnicity, religion (or nonreligion) and over all moral compass should not be frowned upon unless it inflicts harm to other beings. While my mom’s side has always been quite liberal, the same can not be said for the side of my dad. Growing up in a conservative home where the Bible was followed strictly, I would often engage in debates with him about what is considered “normal” and acceptable by society’s standards. Of course this would often be frustrating, but it remains a great experience to see how my liberal values conflict and coincide with the conservative views of my father.
I believe happiness is the equivalence to success. Happiness feeds the soul, it’s the driving force behind a exuberant, and active life. I believe along with this, that happiness comes from the people you surround yourself with, and family is however you are so inclined to define it by. In this modern day, it can be a steep task to override the stigmas about success and how this ties into mental health. I believe one of the greatest challenges for America is trying to find a balance between the age old American dream, and when persistent working isn’t the definition of success for everyone.
I believe through all things else, we are tied and connected by nature. Primal instincts feed or soul. They are both beneficial, and catastrophic and result in a complex and diverse society. I believe nobody is above nature, for how can you hold a higher status to something you are connected to? I believe life does move too fast in modern day society, and there is a lack of connection to the environment. The ideas of both peace, nature, acceptance etc. are fueled by our purpose in this world, which we are once again enlightened by when we transcend into nature.
Hello, my name is Kimberly, a student from Cal State Chico University, I’m send this letter to you to talk about this certain topic that has been an issue for the couple of decade. Diversity, is one of the topic I want to talk about. Diversity is the most important thing for young adults who are entering in University. This will give students chances to open up their comfort zone, and meet other people races and cultures. Diversity can be also be taught for young kids and teenagers,telling all of them to not separate themselves in a certain group or not to discriminating the race or disrespecting someone’s cultures. For me,during high school students from African-American and Latinos are usually in a separate group as if everyone are labels specifically all by themselves. That shows that students taught themselves to not get along each other. Which is bad because we don’t want to live in a separate world with ongoing wars and violence.
Diversity-the state of being different. Which means having people who are different races or who have different cultures in a group or organization. I think that this topic matter right now in the world,because many of the people in United States seem to have a bit problem of divided groups. As if the whole division is an automatic thing for people.Right now there are colleges that are getting diversity in their campus for every students from world-wide.It’s important to teach young adults about diversity because it’s a great opportunity for students future’s. Students will expand their social circle with other various of groups,which is good for their future career too. They have great benefits getting to know various cultures and it’s great when they can travel the world already knowing some things about the country.
The segregation between races is really ridiculous, just because the people of their skins and the way they live can’t be judge if they were born and raised like that, seeing racial incidents will give off a bad vibe for younger students. Making them learn that action is “right”for example,during the old years,whites were raised to be with their same race as well with different other race. Seeing how they separated the young kids and making them adapted to that certain lifestyle. when really it isn’t.Violence and segregation isn’t a way that U.S or any people from another country should learn, instead we should all live together harmony and respect each other. So that is what some colleges are becoming diversity for a great purpose and benefits for young adults. So I’m asking we should make a week or some days where we learn everyone cultural like the way my middle school did when I was a 6th grade, we made a celebration in some classroom that were decorated with the specific race and learning about that country.I think that idea might just bring all the people together and we can learn new things that we would’ve not expected.Under the next paragraph is where I got my thoughts about Diversity.I really hope that this might change a way to have all races and cultures together.I wish you a farewell and to stay great,president.
In the article in a short statement:
- Diversity prepares students for work in a global society
- Increase our knowledge base
- Promotes creative thinking
- Enhances self-awareness
- Enriches the multiple perspectives
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