In these difficult times, it is evident that the United States is facing some serious issues that appear to threaten the very future of our country.
Struggling with a stagnant federal government, an ignorant and unmotivated electorate, and a financial infrastructure in question, this country has its work cut out for it. But regardless of the perils it faces, I still believe that the United States is exceptional.
The reason for the United States’ enduring greatness may very well lie in one of its unique defining characteristics: The United States is a land willing to embrace all who wish to come. Despite the many blemishes on the history of diversity in our country, the United States has and continues to be a country established and cultivated by immigrants.
Many today deride the state of immigration, but when compared to any other developed country, the United States is home to one of the most diverse demographics in the world. The ongoing influx of immigrants brings both talent and labor to the country.
Ultimately, this increasingly diverse populace will allow for continued technological and industrial advancement, sustaining America’s dominance on innovation.
Many developed countries are experiencing drastically low rates of population growth, and in some cases even decline. The United States is not as vulnerable to such a decline due to the vast amount of immigration.
“I think one of America’s greatest advantages is its ability to absorb people from other countries and cultures,” political scientist Francis Fukuyama said, adding, “Virtually all developed countries are facing a demographic crisis, with shrinking populations because of falling birth rates.”
While countries such as France have expelled entire populations of immigrants like the Gypsies and stymied future desire for immigration, the United States has essentially remained the prime destination for those looking for a better life.
Unfortunately for Americans, many of us have seem to have forgotten about our fundamental roots as immigrants. While the often hostile sentiment expressed by many Americans has failed to dissuade immigration significantly, it is still of concern that so many citizens of our country are forsaking one of the many reasons our country has an unparalleled potential for greatness.
We must certainly take care to regulate immigration in a fair and controlled manner, but we must also remember what amazing potential may be waiting outside our gates. Borders must be secured and laws enforced, but it is equally important to reexamine the system to ensure that we continue to encourage and facilitate the enrichment of our country.
The citizens of the world yearning for the fundamental rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness continue to look towards America. There is no country quite like ours, a melting pot of culture in a constant state of discord. It’s this confusion, this freedom to be, and this continued struggle to define what it means to be an American that makes our nation ever better.
The United States may be facing some tough times, but America’s darkest days have always been followed by her finest hours. I am proud to say that the United States is, and has always been, exceptional. In our time of struggle, let us take this opportunity to remember how our roots continue to offer us a capacity for greatness.
Daily is a member of
the class of 2016.