Senator Jay Bulworth, as played by writer-director Warren Beatty in the movie, Bulworth (1998). (Listen to the whole speech HERE)
Last October, German Chancellor Angela Merkel denounced multi-culturalism at a meeting of young Christian Democrats (her political party). She cited a study that found that 13 percent of Germans would welcome a “Führer” to run the country “with a firm hand.” Some 60 percent of Germans would “restrict the practice of Islam,” and 17 percent think Jews have “too much influence,” according to the study.
This past week, British Prime Minister David Cameron echoed her words, pointing to the failure of “multi-culturalism” in the UK as a factor in national security. He noted that home grown terrorism in the UK was not always the product of poverty. Terrorists, such as those who perpetrated the London bombings in 2005, were middle class. The failure, in Mr. Cameron’s view, is that “we have encouraged different cultures to live separate lives, apart from each other and apart from the mainstream.” He believes that the UK should strongly defend its values and culture and let it be known that those who don’t believe as does the mainstream should find someplace else to live.
Open borders and an influx of immigrants from the Middle East have challenged Western Europe in ways that we can only imagine. However, America has an extraordinary history of absorbing and integrating foreigners. Perhaps the so-called LEADERS of these great European democracies should study our success before giving up.
The Irish, Germans and Scandinavians who came here in the 19th Century were followed by Japanese and Italians in the 20th. All faced resistance from the establishment at first. However, they brought up their children here. By the second or third generation, the children and grandchildren of these immigrants had become as American as the Britons and Scots who revolted against the British crown at the birth of this nation. As a resident of South Florida, I can tell you that the children of the Cuban, Puerto Rican and South and Central American immigrants who predominate here want to act like their American peers by age 6, have unlimited texting on their cell phone by 12 and to be driving and dating by age 18.
While many here have been concerned that Latinos do not want to be integrated into our society, the College Board reported this week 14.6% (an increase of 2.6%) of US high school seniors who passed an Advanced Placement exam in 2010 were Latino. This, despite the fact that 41% of Latino’s over the age of 20 have no high school diploma.
One can only wonder how Mr. Cameron and Ms. Merkel would respond to that. Perhaps they should consider how the provincialism of European societies dooms multi-culturalism. Perhaps they should consider that their LEADERSHIP role requires them to address the challenge rather than to denounce its failure.
As for the US? Well, maybe it’s time to stop “classifying” people.
The forbears of Ms. Lopez-Mullins didn’t really care about their classification. Their multi-racial, multi-cultural multi-copulations were the product of sexual attraction, pheromones, whatever! Indeed, the Times story reported that one in seven births is the result of a multi-racial relationship.
So, it seems that we are taking Senator Bulworth’s advice. Maybe we’ll all be the same color someday.