The Era of Assimilation
Well, I think when we’re teaching now we’re really teaching in a different era. I think post-9/11 what we’ve seen is a, is a change in terms of the general temperament of the American public. And let me explain that a little bit more. When we’re talking about issues related to cultural pluralism, related to assimilation, I think at this particular point in our nation’s history, we’re really looking at an era that’s much more prone towards assimilation. For example, the President (Bush) just did his address last evening. And he talked a lot about, if we’re going to bring in 12 million Latinos into the rubric or fabric of the American society, we really need to go about some type of program that teaches them English, that gets them naturalized fast, that assimilates them into the melting pot. And again, probably 10 or 15 years ago, you would not have seen an American president express terminology in quite that same type of vein. So I think post-9/11 we’re really teaching in an era that’s very much into the assimilationist type of doctrine as President Bush has expressed it. And that poses a challenge for many of us who believe in the elements of cultural pluralism, and how to teach cultural pluralism within the classroom. So again, I think we’re teaching in a relatively different era than maybe even 10 years go.