In the first place, we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin. But this is predicated upon the person's becoming in every facet an American, and nothing but an American...There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn't an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag... We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language... and we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people.
Where do we get the energy to keep on hoping and praying that things will get better? What makes us believe we DESERVE a happy life to begin with? Is this just an American phenomenon? We just assume that we are entitled to happiness? And when we do get the things we wished so hard for, are we happy? Or do we just want more...? And what about people in less developed countries who's lives are REALLY hard? People who live in places where infant death, widespread disease, rape, general oppression, poverty and starvation are the norm. Why do THEY keep going? Do they hope for happiness too, or do they think there are no other options but to keep living. I need to know.
To be a mass tourist, to me, is to become a pure late-date American: alien, ignorant, greedy for something you cannot ever have, disappointed in a way you can never admit. It is to spoil, by way of sheer ontology, the very unspoiledness you are there to experience. It is to impose yourself on places that in all non-economic ways would be better, realer, without you. It is, in lines and gridlock and transaction after transaction, to confront a dimension of yourself that is inescapable as it is painful: As a tourist, you become economically significant but existentially loathsome, an insect on a dead thing.