American Creed

America is an amazing cornerstone to making choices of your own: free choices without the fear of being put down by religion or rules that prevent you from being independent from the rest of the world.

By Connor G. from Columbus High School in Montana

Connor Goddard

American Dream

Junot Diaz, a writer born in the Dominican Republic and who immigrated into the United States as a child, states in the film American Creed, “I immigrated into the United States in 1974 from the Dominican Republic, I never really saw a map of the United States at the time and and the best thing is that I was a little kid that didn’t know any better. I assumed that everybody at the age of six moved from their home country and were placed somewhere where they had to learn English.” Diaz grew up in a community with many friends from all over the world. He feels that his ability to create the art that he has put forth is from what he sees as him learning to communicate and become friends with the diverse children..

To other people such as Deidre Prevett, an Oklahoma elementary principal, education is what she believes is central to success in America and in reaching the American Dream. In America, education is the cornerstone of what you can recieve with hard work. Education is what pushes you through to get what you want in life. In Deidre's opinion, education is what can determine what kind of life you will live. With more education, the better the likelihood of getting a job that pays more with less work.

Joan Blades, the co-founder of MoveOn.org, says finding similarities in our society will bring us closer. Finding the American Dream in our society is finding acceptance, and when we as a society define each other by our differences and isolate ourselves from the world around us to find our own idea as an individual. The differences that we have are what separate us, we are mentally making obstacles to isolate ourselves from everybody else. Americans need to learn that finding similarities is not as complicated as you may think. Some of our worst times in our world were the best times for us too connect. The people that suffered together during the world wars, the Great Depression, or even 9/11, all came together in a time of need putting aside our differences to find a solution to what threatened us. We are a society of problem solvers. In our world, hope is our best weapon we have to become one with each other in our society. According to John Gable, the CEO of Allsides (a media bias center), “We shield ourselves in a filter bubble.” This bubble separates us and may make us feel alone. If we pop this bubble, we can all find the similarities in the people around us.

Others, such as Leila Janah, think that the vast success comes from being born in America. She is a first generation in her family that was born in america and now runs a large corporation for building jobs in small town communities. The people in these communities are working on software, which is one our fastest advancing technologies in our world. This kind of step over everybody else to provide work for many people in need. She believes that where you come from is a contribution to how you will actually live throughout life. No matter the differences of people’s ideas, we all should look for the similarities of the people around us, rather than find the differences and isolate ourselves from the rest of the world. We can all have our own opinions, it’s just how you want to live life, and living in America is an amazing cornerstone to making choices of your own: free choices without the fear of being put down by religion or rules that prevent you from being independent from the rest of the world. 

Columbus High School

American Creed - Continuing the Conversation

This group consists of student responses to the American Creed documentary from PBS and Citizen Film.

More letters from Columbus High School

Surprise Me

More letters about "freedom"

Surprise Me

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.

Writing Our Future projects are designed by educators for educators and the young people they work with. Intended for use in schools, libraries, and other educational settings. All projects are COPPA compliant and educator-managed. NWP is committed to supporting young people’s writing and civic participation by providing a safe and supportive environment for youth writing, media creation, sharing, and publishing.