New York Times columnist Charles Blow said this week that discussing “assimilation” and “American culture” is “really problematic” for him.
While discussing President Donald Trump’s immigration plan that gives more points to those who speak English, CNN pundit Jeffrey Lord spoke about the importance of “assimilation” as opposed to the “self-segregating” that goes on in society and increasingly on college campuses. Blow was bewildered by Lord’s focus on assimilation.
“I’m always curious about this when people say assimilate. Assimilate to what?” Blow asked during the discussion with host Anderson Cooper.
Lord answered: “American culture.”
“Well, that’s very interesting terminology, right, American culture, because there’s a lot of different American cultures. So, I’m always curious when people say assimilate. If you want to assimilate to a set of beliefs and ideals, I understand that part of it,” Blow said. “But when people say assimilate, it always rings to me as if people are saying that you need to abandon your ethnicity and become more like, you know, the kind of the white America that I’m [envisioning] — just explain to me what it is. I’m very confused by that always.”
Blow said he is not opposed to “the idea that people will enjoy their own cultures in America, and I think that actually makes America strong.”
“So I’m trying to figure out if people want to enjoy a culture that is native to wherever they’re from, and they bring that to America, that makes America more dynamic and diverse, to me. So when people say I need you to be willing to assimilate, the word, assimilate, is really problematic for me,” Blow continued. “I don’t know what it means.”
Lord tried to explain to Blow what he meant by “assimilation.”
“My mother is Irish on her side of the family. So, you know what, on St. Patrick’s Day, I have corn beef and cabbage and maybe a green beer,” Lord explained. “Trust me, I’m not Irish. I’m an American. That’s the point.”
As Breitbart News has explained, in the 2016 election, Trump galvanized “voters who wanted to send a loud and clear message about the importance of melting-pot Americanism (instead of salad-bowl separatism).” And by voting for Trump, many of his voters, as Breitbart News noted, “were loudly–or silently–voting for E Pluribus Unum (‘Out of many, one’) instead of Al Gore’s Ex Uno Plures (‘Out of one, many’).”