Back in 1951 when I was in the first grade I remember my teacher explaining to us that although at some time or another we had past generations of our family born in other countries, we are living in the United States so therefore that makes all of us Americans.

There was no mention of dividing the name American into different groups.

None of us where described as Italian American, Irish American, French American, etc. Again, we where taught that we where all Americans.

Somewhere in the 1970s groups started to cause a real riff in this country. The term African American emerged as the most popular divisional group. Soon some other people started labeling themselves using the criteria of where their past ancestors came from. However, the most prevalent still being African American.

In my opinion, this self labeling, along with President Barack Obama, is a lot to blame for the race division we are now seeing today.

If you ask me what my nationality is my answer will be American and proud of it. Certainly some of my family from generations ago came here from Europe. That does not make me an Irish American or British American. I was born here so I am an American.

I am no fan of the KKK, nor am I any fan of any other racist groups no matter if they are white, black, brown, yellow or sky blue pink.

Although slavery was a dark time in America, it is still part of our history. I agree slavery was wrong. However, I really do not think there is anyone alive today that owned slaves or were themselves slaves.

Do not try to change history. Leave it as what it is and use it as a tool to learn from.

As far as pre-labeling the noun American, be proud to correctly state that you are an American.

God bless America and President Donald Trump.

Tom McDonald

Waynesboro

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