No sooner had our nation begun in 1776 than "E Pluribus Unum" was adopted as the national motto. Latin for "Out of many, one," the phrase appears in the ribbon held by the eagle in the Great Seal of the United States. It is also found on our nation's coins and currency, even on some buildings erected by governments large and small.
Originally referring to the union formed by the separate states, "E Pluribus Unum" has also legitimately been employed to indicate that immigrants from all over the globe have successfully populated our nation. The thinking in this additional application of the motto, of course, is that even though Americans came here "out of many" lands, they were always speedily encouraged to become part of our "one" nation by learning its admirable history, speaking its common language, earning citizenship, and assimilating into the American culture.
Thinking Americans have never found any problem with ethnic groups holding festivals recalling their heritage, or with youngsters being encouraged by parents to learn the language of their ancestry. But being fully American was always the goal and a major part of that was always speaking the common language. Whenever Americans of German decent celebrated Oktoberfest, they invited friends and neighbors of other backgrounds to enjoy the party. So, too, did those whose roots could be traced to France, Ireland, Greece, China, Mexico and elsewhere customarily delight in sharing with others the celebrations, customs, and particular traditions remembered from the "old country."
It eventually became no more than a matter of conversational interest where one came from, or where one's ancestors came from. Once here as legal immigrants Ã¯Â¿Â½and very glad to be hereÃ¯Â¿Â½new Americans joined other residents in proudly celebrating the unique American holiday that marks our nation's birth, Independence Day. The Fourth of July saw a national outpouring of joy at the good fortune in being part of a land that was the envy of the world, the one where dreams could most readily turn into realities, and the one where unparalleled freedom was the rule, not the exception.
Some modern nay sayers, however, like to point to slavery as a blot on this nation, even to suggest that the nation isn't worth preserving because of this fault. Those who truly love America acknowledge that tolerating slavery was a mistake, even a grave one. But loyal Americans immediately take pride in noting that ours is a nation where slavery was abolished, a step that made America an even better place.
Until recent years, virtually all immigrants speedily sought citizenship and assimilation, eagerly wanting to become full-fledged Americans. They worked hard at learning to speak and write in English knowing that this would help them to be a better citizen. But today, in ever-widening sectors of the nation, assimilation including speaking English and acquiring citizenship is resisted. Revolutionaries have defiantly announced plans to break America apart. With overt assistance or at least acquiescence on the part of some political leaders, they are well along toward splitting the U.S. into factions that refuse to recognize any central authority.
In the process, America has become threatened from within by invaders who don't want to be Americans and don't want our nation to continue to exist.