Views of Rushmore

This image showcases the different views of the American creed and the difference between how diverse and non-diverse Americans see it.

By Jack M. from Staples High School in Connecticut

When discussing the American creed, I, after some deliberation, decided to answer the question, “How do diverse Americans understand the American Creed”. My reasoning behind choosing this one was that out of all of the choice, this is the one that I felt like I could answer the best and deliver my answer with the most conviction as I had an instant, clear idea in my head of how a diverse American views the American creed. Furthermore, I think this was aided somewhat by the fact that I could be considered a diverse American, and used this to my advantage to connect my idea of the American creed back to myself. When hearing everyone talking about the morals and beliefs that America was built on for their own projects, I knew I wanted a way to include this in my project. After some research, I decided that Mount Rushmore was the best embodiment of these beliefs that the country was built on. The four presidents that were chosen because the artist, and public at the time, felt like “they represented the most important events in the history of the United States” (Rushmore). From bringing “the nation together during its greatest trial” (Rushmore) to “[inspiring] democracies around the world” (Rushmore), it is fair to say that the faces on the mountain are well respected, and almost worshiped, around the country, especially by non-diverse americans. The love and pride for the country, brings a screen of patriotism that, I think, prevents seeing the issues that America has as a country. The artwork shows this by having the two groups of people, the non-diverse americans on the left. These are all white, rich men who have never felt any oppression, marginalization, or othering in their lives. They feel they should be patriotic for the country which has given them their lives. As “patriotism can be defined by standing up for the values and beliefs of your country”, these same non-diverse americans feel that changing the values to those of many years ago, would be unpatriotic, and going against their country. It is due to this screen of patriotism that they cannot see that there are any issues with the old fashioned beliefs in the country. The diverse Americans however, the group on the left, do not have this screen of patriotism that prevents them from seeing what is wrong with the country. They see these big American figures disappointed in the country that America has become. I, not having the patriotism, considered myself one of these diverse Americans and drew myself on the right side of the screen. I think this image showed that having patriotism for a country skews the way in which one will view the American creed and how to live it in the country.

“Definition of Patriotism: What It Means To Be An American.” National Foundation of Patriotism,

foundationofpatriotism.org/definition-of-patriotism-what-it-means-to-be-an-american/.

“Diverse United States Divided on Symbols of Patriotism.” USA Today, Gannett Satellite

Information Network, 8 Oct. 2017,

www.usatoday.com/story/sports/nfl/2017/10/08/diverse-united-states-divided-on-symbols

-of-patriotism/106437716/.

“Why Do People Come to the US?” US Immigration Report,

usafacts.org/reports/immigration.

“Why These Four Presidents?” National Parks Service, U.S. Department of the Interior, 22 June

2018, www.nps.gov/moru/learn/historyculture/why-these-four-presidents.htm.

Staples High School

Herzog 2A 18-19

This group is dedicated to Mrs. Herzog's English 2A 18-19 class to share their responses to the five invitations.

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Writing Our Future: American Creed is part of the National Writing Project’s family of youth publishing projects, all gathered under the Writing Our Future initiative.

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