I belong to a Clan of Resident Aliens. My neighbor is a former Russian communist, my gardener is Hispanic and my best friend is somewhere in between. As for me, I?m supposed to be an American, one that was born some ten thousand miles away in an undersized, under-populated, under-represented republic called Armenia. Am I really American? What is American?
On October 10, 1492 a man named Christopher Columbus landed in America thinking he was in Eastern Europe. While he may have been wrong in terms of where he was, he nonetheless had experienced some sort of drive, motivation, and persistence to make it there. This same spirit was carried through to the peoples of Europe who realized that Columbus had indeed discovered a new continent. One that would become famous with the name America, named after Amerigo Vespucci. People seeking success, a better opportunity, and freedom would flock to this country many years following that; people from different places of the world, all united by a common motivation: success!
I remember when I was just three years old and we arrived to ?America?.
I asked my mother, as I looked around, how I could tell which of the many people where the Americans. My mother looked back at me somewhat flustered. ?It?s hard to tell...? she muttered. Then as we kept walking in the airport we passed a few fair skinned, light haired, tall individuals who were speaking so loud and confidently in a language which we couldn?t understand a word of. ?They sound like they know what they?re saying,? my mother said, ?...they must be the Americans.? Until that day I have always attempted to figure out who and more importantly what Americans are.
The day I was sworn into American citizenship, that question became more important to...