There is no room in this country for hyphenated Americanism. When I refer to hyphenated Americans, I do not refer to naturalized Americans. Some of the very best Americans I have ever known were naturalized Americans, Americans born abroad. But a hyphenated American is not an American at all … The one absolutely certain way of bringing this nation to ruin, of preventing all possibility of its continuing to be a nation at all, would be to permit it to become a tangle of squabbling nationalities, an intricate knot of German-Americans, Irish-Americans, English-Americans, French-Americans, Scandinavian-Americans or Italian-Americans, each preserving its separate nationality, each at heart feeling more sympathy with Europeans of that nationality, than with the other citizens of the American Republic … There is no such thing as a hyphenated American who is a good American. The only man who is a good American is the man who is an American and nothing else. [Speech at Carnegie Hall, Knights of Columbus, Columbus Day 1915]
At the beginning of the 20th Century, immigration laws and procedures had changed; with immigrants required to process at Ellis Island before allowed entry to the United States. The primary concern at the time was medical screening to prevent immigrants spreading communicable disease. There was not background check system as there is today. It was also a way to record processing dates for immigrants. Before Ellis Island had been opened, immigrants were processed by New York State officials at a depot in lower Manhattan. The Federal government took control of immigration on April 18th, 1890 and Congress approved funding to construct the first federal immigration center on Ellis Island. The first station was three-stories tall with out buildings and officially opened on January 1st, 1892. In the first year, almost 450,000 immigrants were processed. The wooden out building structure burned down on June 15th, 1897, presumed to have been caused by faulty wiring. This was before standard safety/installation procedures were developed, part of the building code system.
By the time Ellis Island immigration center closed on November 12th, 1954, twelve million immigrants were processed by the US Bureau of Immigration.
Most of the time it took two to five hours to get approval to enter the United States from Ellis Island. Questions were asked (29) that included name, occupation, and amount of money they were brought with them. The Immigration Act of 1924 restricted immigration and also allowed processing to be conducted at oversea embassies. Immigrants that were displaced persons or war refugees were processed at Ellis Island.
The government required that immigrants have between 18 and 25 dollars and be healthy (without communicable diseases). Those who had visible health problems or diseases were rejected and sent home, or held in the Ellis facility hospital for quarantine and treatment. More than three thousand immigrants held in quarantine died on Ellis Island. Common sense regulations required that immigrants had enough money to support themselves in beginning their new life in the United States, until employment was procured. Some unskilled workers were rejected because of a possibility they were not able to obtain employment. Other reasons besides health, which amounted to about 2% of the immigrants, for rejection was criminal background or insanity.
|Soldiers departing for Europe|
During World War I, German saboteurs damaged ammunition depot buildings on Ellis Island; making it harder for German immigrants to be approved to enter the US. During that war, Ellis Island was a processing center for returning sick or wounded US soldiers, as well as a US Coast Guard training base.
The Internal Security Act of 1950 barred members of communist or fascist organizations from immigrating to the United States.
When immigrants did not pass medical screening, their clothing was marked with chalk; some immigrants would either wipe off the marks or turn their clothes inside out.
During this period of history the term melting pot became the description of multiculturalism in the United States; referring to various ethnic groups.
In a Canadian broadcast by Gordon Sinclair, June 5th, 1973, the United States was commended:
The United States dollar took another pounding on German, French and British exchanges this morning, hitting the lowest point ever known in West Germany. It has declined there by 41% since 1971 and this Canadian thinks it is time to speak up for the Americans as the most generous and possibly the least-appreciated people in all the earth.
As long as sixty years ago, when I first started to read newspapers, I read of floods on the Yellow River and the Yangtze. Who rushed in with men and money to help? The Americans did.
They have helped control floods on the Nile, the Amazon, the Ganges and the Niger. Today, the rich bottom land of the Mississippi is under water and no foreign land has sent a dollar to help. Germany, Japan and, to a lesser extent, Britain and Italy, were lifted out of the debris of war by the Americans who poured in billions of dollars and forgave other billions in debts. None of those countries is today paying even the interest on its remaining debts to the United States.
When the franc was in danger of collapsing in 1956, it was the Americans who propped it up and their reward was to be insulted and swindled on the streets of Paris. I was there. I saw it.
When distant cities are hit by earthquakes, it is the United States that hurries into help... Managua Nicaragua is one of the most recent examples. So far this spring, 59 American communities have been flattened by tornadoes. Nobody has helped.
The Marshall Plan .. the Truman Policy .. all pumped billions upon billions of dollars into discouraged countries. Now, newspapers in those countries are writing about the decadent war-mongering Americans.
I'd like to see one of those countries that is gloating over the erosion of the United States dollar build its own airplanes.
Come on... let's hear it! Does any other country in the world have a plane to equal the Boeing Jumbo Jet, the Lockheed Tristar or the Douglas 107? If so, why don't they fly them? Why do all international lines except Russia fly American planes? Why does no other land on earth even consider putting a man or women on the moon?
You talk about Japanese technocracy and you get radios. You talk about German technocracy and you get automobiles. You talk about American technocracy and you find men on the moon, not once, but several times ... and safely home again. You talk about scandals and the Americans put theirs right in the store window for everyone to look at. Even the draft dodgers are not pursued and hounded. They are here on our streets, most of them ... unless they are breaking Canadian laws .. are getting American dollars from Ma and Pa at home to spend here.
When the Americans get out of this bind ... as they will... who could blame them if they said 'the hell with the rest of the world'. Let someone else buy the Israel bonds, Let someone else build or repair foreign dams or design foreign buildings that won't shake apart in earthquakes.
When the railways of France, Germany and India were breaking down through age, it was the Americans who rebuilt them. When the Pennsylvania Railroad and the New York Central went broke, nobody loaned them an old caboose. Both are still broke. I can name to you 5,000 times when the Americans raced to the help of other people in trouble.
Can you name me even one time when someone else raced to the Americans in trouble? I don't think there was outside help even during the San Francisco earthquake.
Our neighbours have faced it alone and I am one Canadian who is damned tired of hearing them kicked around. They will come out of this thing with their flag high. And when they do, they are entitled to thumb their nose at the lands that are gloating over their present troubles.
I hope Canada is not one of these. But there are many smug, self-righteous Canadians. And finally, the American Red Cross was told at its 48th Annual meeting in New Orleans this morning that it was broke.
This year's disasters .. with the year less than half-over… has taken it all and nobody...but nobody... has helped.
ORIGINAL SCRIPT AND AUDIO, COURTESY STANDARD BROADCASTING CORPORATION LTD.; copyright 1973 BY GORDON SINCLAIR, PUBLISHED BY STAR QUALITY MUSIC (SOCAN), A DIVISION OF UNIDISC MUSIC INC., 578 HYMUS BOULEVARD, POINTE-CLAIRE, QUEBEC, CANADA, H9R 4T2
The following is the audio recording video of that radio broadcast …
Mr. Sinclair was a Canadian who appreciated America more than US citizens do today. We have lost prestige and are scorned by nations who we helped in dark periods of history. American society has raised a generation no longer respects those traditions or heritage; brainwashed by those who rewrite history to match their political ideology.
Today, our society is too busy thinking themselves as “black” or “white” or whatever, instead of unified thinking that if we are legal citizens – we are Americans. Anything else is secondary when it comes to our ancestry and family heritage. The media does not help in that area; and it seems that political organizations are purposefully keeping the nation divided by such shallow thinking.
Too many give in to those that think they can come here uninvited, retain their language and culture without learning that of the United States, and not only have no desire to assimilate, but instead develop pockets of their culturalism that is determined to change those traditions and heritage by adopting those of their native country - which in most cases they left because conditions were not so good. Meanwhile, politicians take advantage of this, do not enforce common sense immigration laws, in order to gain the votes of naive immigrants who do not realize they are being used.
As for myself, I am just an American - and still proud and thankful I am.