What makes an American? If we compare crazy teenagers to wrinkled senior citizens, there must be something that brought us together in the first place. We’ve been viewed through the eyes of foreigners, as well as our own fellow Americans. Our own ancestors, whether a parent or great-great grandparent or even later, have had to make the same journey to find our just how promising the Land of Opportunity was.
The first two passages, written in the 1830s by a foreigner by the name of Crevecoeur, reflects his views on what America means. He believes that an American can leave behind all of their old customs, religions, and ways of living in order to start over. An American means being your own individual. I agree, because the people who left their countries didn’t have anyone to look up to, to set the regulations. They could move up in society, or go back down. It fuels the passion to be better and work hard. In addition, the second passage states that there are no separate races, and that you don’t need to follow all of your old customs.
Passage 3, which was written around 1915 by Teddy Roosevelt, states that any person living in America is an American. Whether Indian, Asian, Russian, etc., you should always regard yourself as an American. Any hyphenated American is a bad American. However, I believe that the hyphenated names just show how, although we are different in origin, we all share the American dream. It may fuel an understanding for others. We are all liked by the word American, and no race-related proper noun before that would make enough of a difference in how we regard each other.
Dr. John Gartner wrote Passage 4 in 2005. He believes that the Americans who left their own home countries demonstrated a psychological test. On a broad overall basis, Americans left their home countries because they wanted adventure, and took risks. I agree, because to have the courage to leave home and go on a voyage to an unknown land wouldn’t sound very appealing. They had to have had taken huge risks, and must have had similar personalities to fuel the need to continue their journey.
Lastly, in Passage 5, it is similar to Passage 4. Written in 2005 by Peter Whybrow, he sees similar demonstrations of courageous traits in Americans. He found that inhabitants in the U.S. are more likely to have a D47 gene. Our ancestors must have shared the same trait, which has been passed down for generations. They all were risk-takers, the courageous. It is because of them that we, America, are what we are now.
The word “American” means several things. We may share the same DNA. It also brings us under one title, so that we all have a similarity, no matter what race or physical appearance may tell other people