The United States is always in the act of becoming, remaking itself. Like all nations, America’s population replaces itself through the generation of a new people, except that unlike other nations it has done so in the context of an inventive society endlessly progressing somewhere. No one has ever laid out a plan for America. It happened as the result of hard work, freedom, perseverance and luck. Were the American continent 2,500 instead of 3,500 miles from Europe, history would almost certainly have been different. Indeed, geography is crucial for any nation. Left alone for a decisive period, American society was able to adopt the values of a progressive culture that made it special for a long period of time. Now, its geography and a great demographic moment are remaking a country hard to recognize from even two decades ago, and the role of Hispanic or Latinos is watershed.
It should be clear to anyone who reads the news that the country needs more from Hispanic/Latinos than their permanent presence and demography. America needs confident and secure HispanicLatinos armed with a vision for a future that is not altogether certain for a nation that in its heyday has pushed into the future and brought the world behind it.
In this notable moment of humankind’s history in the making, the country will not be more than what HispanicLatinos make of themselves, and so HispanicLatinos have an unparalleled opportunity to remake the country and perhaps world history itself. But they have to become more than they are as a group today. Whomever they become in the process will create the new American identity. It seems plausible that if they can avoid losing themselves in today’s chaos of modern-day living and if those who lost parts of their identity through time can reformulate themselves, they then can push forward to adopt a new intellectual framework.
A new outlook would emphasize the nature of the critical importance of the growth of their population to their country and harness the theme of salvation that is so prevalent a part of HispanicLatino culture. Understanding how important they are to the country can motivate its members to fuel — or in some cases, acquire — a love for learning that through strategic utilization of technology can leapfrog them past their current reality to help keep the country as a leader of the free world.
In developing a new intellectual framework to guide them into the future, HispanicLatinos will find their voice, which cannot go unheard again as it has for more than two centuries. Their new thinking should not be based on the facility of ethnicity, that is, all things HispanicLatino taking precedence. That is too easy and superficial thinking in a world that in any case does not believe that any nation or group is exceptional. Rather, the basis of their new approach should operate on a facility of intensity – on how deeply HispanicLatinos can create and draw new energy from an exciting new purpose and vision that concentrates their belief in the future and in themselves.
Feel free to forward these blogs adapted from previous writings, with additional thoughts published invariably in between.