Reader: US-Born identify as Greeks?

To the Editor:

I was shocked by the article about young Greek-Americans’ divided loyalties; and on the Fourth of July, of all days! (“Do You Feel More Greek Than American?” July 4 Special Edition.) It is certainly eye-opening.
Growing up in New York, there was never any doubt in my mind or among my family that our first loyalty belonged to America. Greece is the land of our ancestors and we are certainly proud of our heritage. But when push comes to shove, we are Americans. My grandfather left Chios (then part of Ottoman Turkey) in 1910, and proudly adopted America as his home. My grandmother joined him in 1921, and to her dying day, 81 years later, she wore her love for and loyalty to America on her sleeve.
The article speaks of loyalty to each country’s Olympic athletes, perhaps to make light of the issue. But if the level of loyalty displayed by those interviewed was found in German-Americans or Italian-Americans during World War II, the war might have had a different outcome.
I suspect this sort of thinking is a natural outgrowth of the Left’s emphasis on multiculturalism and the tendency to treat assimilation as anathema.
Yet, only by assimilating into the proverbial melting pot can all of America’s immigrants and their descendants form a more perfect Union.
God bless America.

John C. Stratakis
New York, NY

1 Comment

  1. John. I think you’re overreacting to the above article. I would think that if these people were to move to Greece, they would identify as Americans. Especially when they’re there with all the unemployment and other financial problems. You tend to romanticize the land of your parents, because their stories of their life there, are through the rose-tinted glass of memory. Besides, if they backed Greece in the Olympic games, or any sports venue, does not prove that your patriotism is any less. And, of course, you can’t compare it to how the German or Italian Americans felt during WWII. I’m sure that Greeks would have been on the side of what’s right. Thank God Greece has not put us to that test. Our little land has always done what’s right, while others have not. Maybe that’s why we have the right to be so proud of being Greek. Germans and Italians don’t have that luxury

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