Who are these ‘American People?’


USA_Flag_MapWatching the political drama-series (which make for great TV) I hear a common theme about the ‘American people.’ This everyday reference comes from every politician, pundit, protester, pontiff, philosopher or professor all staking claim to know, who are in fact, the “American people.” Somehow the American people always agree with their view. The American people simultaneously are both in favor and opposition, wealthy and middle class, intelligent and confused, surely confident and scared completely out of their minds.

They even have polls for the American people.  They give them approval ratings, opinions, phone calls, ‘tweets’, reporter interviews—all so we can get-to-know them.

I wonder if I am an American people.  I must not be, since I’ve never been asked a question or taken a poll. I vote always by myself, yet later the results say that the “American people has spoken.”

I worry that only the majority of people are viewed as the American people.   We seem to ignore that American people are made up of individuals with a hosts of nuanced opinions, likes, dislikes, and ideas that are not always measurable.  Our languages are diverse. Instead, we are given the universal American people dialect: Votes. 

But how can I get a message out about this kind of misrespresentation of Americans?  If I start a group, we will become a movement, then a party, later another ‘American people.’  So, I guess I’m left to this: Writing a blog as a whisper among screams; a unpolled opinion; and unrated interview.  I think I like it better:  Then one day someone will read this and come up with their own opinion—realizing ‘they’ are a person too.

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