What is known as the distinct or unique American culture

The NY Times researched the overlap between the race-baiting jargon of Trump and Fox News bullies, and the various racist massacres of the past few years. There’s a lot of it.

To single out one item from a long piece…

Rush Limbaugh issued a grim prognosis to his millions of radio listeners: if the immigrants from Central America weren’t stopped, the United States would lose its identity. “The objective is to dilute and eventually eliminate or erase what is known as the distinct or unique American culture,” Mr. Limbaugh said, adding: “This is why people call this an invasion.”

But that’s an illusion. The idea that there’s such a thing as “the distinct or unique American culture,” and that Rush Limbaugh knows what it is, and that it’s a permanent, static, unchanging thing is an illusion, and a damn silly one at that. What culture? Which one? The Sioux, the Cherokee, the Tlingit? The one in and around Santa Fe in the 17th century? Slave culture? Gullah culture? Mississippi Delta culture? Cajun? Lower East Side? The Heights? Chicago? Detroit?

We know what he thinks he means – white people, men mostly, plus their shadowy wives, speaking Murkan English the way he, Limbaugh, speaks it, and growing up reciting The Pledge at school every day, going to church (Protestant) every Sunday and getting misty-eyed when The National Tune is played before every football game. That culture.

But that culture isn’t universal or eternal and it sure as hell doesn’t represent all there is to this country. It’s a big place with a very messy history, and it’s not capable of having one simple monoculture. The culture has never stood still, and even Limbaugh wouldn’t want it to have. Just for a start, where would he be without the culture of shock jock radio and screaming angry white guys?

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