Ji-Yeon Mary Yuhfill– born in Korea, in 1965– discusses her personal experience with history classes in “Let’s Tell the story of all America’s Cultures”. She asserts that the history did not recognize the contributions of various ethnic groups to the formation of the USA.
Ji-Yeon Mary Yuhfill writes that she grew up hearing, seeing, and almost believing that America was white and white was best of all. In addition, she read in her textbooks that all the great men: founding fathers, explorers, industrialists, presidents, and so on were white people. Whereas black people were slaves and Native Americans were losers. Furthermore, there are immigrants who have equally contributed to the establishment of America, but their contributions are in shadow for they were not whites. Therefore, Yuhfill suggests that schools or colleges put the contributions of non-white people in the academic curriculum in order to let the children know the fact.
To be precise, in mainstream history there is neither the presentation nor the contribution of immigrants mentioned. The author says she never heard a word about how Asian immigrants were among the first to turn the Californian desert into the field of plenty. Or any Asian worker who worked in the sugarcane field in Hawaii. Similarly, Asian immigrants were deprived of U.S. citizenship although they served honorably in Second World War. Likewise, she mentions Benjamin Franklin was deeply influenced by the alliance of Native American Tribes that he adapted their system into the American system of state and federal government. However, it is not written anywhere in the history books. Furthermore, she writes that she heard about neither the freedom fighter such as Fredrick Douglas nor the black scholar W.E.B. Du Bois.
However, the textbooks in America only show the greatness, sacrifices, or contributions of white people. Therefore, the writer opposes this idea because America is not the legacy of white people only. Since America is a country where people from diverse ethnicity and disparate countries dwell, it is obvious that each one of them has an equal contribution to making America great. This is the reason why she argues that America was shaped and continues to be shaped by people of different backgrounds
In short, Yuhfill vehemently states that America does not belong only to a certain ethnicity or race. Rather it is the country for all the people who have come there in pursuit of better life and happiness no matter whether he is Asian, African, or anyone. And who has equally contributed to the advancement of this dream country?