Soylent Green is people! It’s people!

The concept of a melting pot is often used to describe the multicultural society that we have in the U.S. Protractors often cite that that means homogenizing the population and thus erasing differences (and difficulties) through assimilation, both culturally and physiologically. Their idea is that the U.S. is more like a salad bowl, where each ingredient still lends its own flavor to the whole but retains its identity. Me, I can’t decide which of these things to swallow?

The melting pot idea was one of the things that allowed me to get a little nationalistic from time to time, because I really liked the idea of different races and cultures coming together – taking the best parts of each. Biology backs this idea up with separated gene pools each adapting and evolving the best traits they can in isolation. Then when those previously isolated pools mix the results are that the best genes of each pool tend to get passed on, creating better and better offspring with the addition of more and more gene pools. (Plus have you seen these kids? They are beautiful!)

It used to seem pretty clear to me that the evolutionary advantages to mixing us all together outweighed any loss of culture that would be experienced. After all I am American, I had no culture to begin with. Until I realized that each culture on the planet has a unique set of ways in which they view the world and so by losing a culture or language we lose a perspective forever.

So is it better not to melt together to retain our cultural identities, or try to retain those identities while still attempting to have more multi-cultural pairings? Is that even possible? I dunno.

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