Exploring the Social Imagination

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

The Social Imagination ~ Integrative Function!

Anyone with Education will tell you its all about Integration!

In our fallen social imagination, diversity is necessary. Ironically, what we as individuals cling to is solidarity.  America is a diverse nation. Yet, it fails to protect the diversity already within its borders. We fail to integrate. Perhaps, its because America was a 'melting pot'. People who came over either sank or swam.It worked that most people swam as fast as they could integrating themselves. It used to work. If you want to ride a bike, just get on and start peddling. When that urge is not strong enough, or if there is no need because other forms of transportation exists then why bother. As we live more and more in a global community, this urge becomes weak. People don't have to swim or sink. They float between their place of origin and the US.

As with transportation, if you can float to get by, why buy a bike or even a long term public pass. The problem comes when the entire present society is riding bicycles;... you better ride with them if you want to fit in and have any kind of fulfilling future in that wider social group. That is how a positive functioning society absorbs newbies and sustains continuity of what was and is and will be.  see that though the US is some kind of shining star among nations, we can only be that to others in this fallen world by having a clean position, a clear understanding of what makes a person an American. What is an American? It is an immigrant come looking... for a future, for liberty, for justice, for opportunity. What does that require? It requires an open mind and that is what must be integrated into the closed mind of both the new immigrants and the old.

Given today's global community, people become more temporary in a place or not locked in to anyone in particular. Integration is still necessary, no matter how long the stay. If someone were coming to stay in your home, wouldn't you want to integrate them whether they stayed for a week or one year or longer. You would do this so that they and you would be comfortable in the same space and could enjoy the situation. The US has never had any formal integration program. Sure, its has the path to citizenship but given what was just stated about temporary stays, that path is not always taken. The integration of people into a society is vital for everyone's happiness and safety.

We don't see that happening or even being discussed. We hear people in higher positions calling each other names and lame and they are to blame for their yapping.  Anyone with higher education in the social sciences will tell you that we should be hearing our own failure of integrating. How to do that? Well, you have to know something about the society that is drawing newbies and you have to understand what its about in terms of who it is and is not. In that case, the majority of people has to be addressed in terms of who they are and what they do. So, when statistics show that a majority of Americans go to some kind of Christian church or that a majority of Americans still marry the opposite sex and have children, one has to give certain  attention to those stats regarding integration; otherwise, there is no need to integrate. There is only the social contract that stats the 'golden rule' of civil rights. I can only do what the law allows and that goes for you too.

Some people think that is enough. But, the classic social theorist will tell you its not enough. Meaning comes into play in people's lives. Marriage has meaning, family has meaning, belief in a higher being = Creator has meaning. Integration requires that meaning be transferred, shared and appreciated within the borders or framework of the society that one wishes or wants to integrate into. Or...look upon the face of disjunctive function!

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