Mary Hitchens notes in our family history, History and Recollections:rn]acob Richert, 1814-1901, that “the German servicesrncontinued and confirmation services were also held in Germanrnuntil 1917, when they were discontinued due to the sentimentrnreflected by World War I.” While conforming to an Anglo-rnAmerican political culture —indeed, while regarding themselvesrnas “good Americans”—my family also clung to their separaternidentity as German-Americans.rnBut between the wars, the federal government’s tolerance ofrna general Euro-American diversity ended. There were manyrnfactors involved, but the most important was a demographicrnshift. While Anglo-Americans still held the reins of power, theyrnwere no longer the dominant ethnic group in America: German-rnAmericans outnumbered Anglo-Americans. As JohnrnLukacs wrote in Outgrowing Democracy:rnIn 1850, 2.5 million of the population were foreign-born,rnin 1910 over 14 million (a total that equaled the numberrnof natives in twenty-two states of the Union). In 1850 Englishrnwas the native language of 97 percent of citizensrnwho were foreign-born (this includes, of course, the greatrnmass of the Irish), in 1910 it was 58 percent and decreasingrnfast, since by then the overwhelming majority of immigrantsrnwere coming from southern and eastern Europernand Russia… . Their appearance and theirrnexpressions made them immediately recognizable, anrnalien element in the midst or on the edges of the Americanrnmass. Their visibility contributed to the increasingrnnational sentiment in favor of immigration restriction.rnImmigration restriction was a reasonable response to a culturernthat was being transformed—even if the transformationrnwas simply from an Anglo-American culture to a more broadlyrnEuropean-American one. In 1921, Congress passed the JohnsonrnAct, restricting immigration and establishing the “nationalrnorigins” system, which discriminated in favor of European immigrantsrn(the 1924 Johnson-Reed Act went further, discriminatingrnin favor of Anglo and Northern European immigrants).rnBut more drastic, and ultimately destructive, measures werernalso adopted. Rather than allow an American national identityrnto arise slowly and naturally, the federal government embarked,rnin the 1920’s and 30’s, on a program designed to create anrnAmerican nationalism through the desfruction of lingering Europeanrnnational identities. Requiring a civics test of prospectsrnfor naturalization—which seems to have fallen by the waysidernin the Clinton administration’s rush to naturalize Mexicans inrntime for the 1996 election—dates from this time, and the test,rnof course, was administered in English. Government agenciesrnand “educational professionals” released citizenship manualsrnwhich encouraged the use of English, membership in civic organizationsrnsuch as Rotary, and wholesome American sportsrnlike baseball. A typical example is The Life and Work of the Citizenrn(1935) by Howard C. Hill, head of the Deparhiient of SocialrnScience at the University of Chicago High School. It is festoonedrnthroughout with fasces, symbolizing the attempt tornmold the diverse European national identities into a commonrnAmerican identity, and to create a uniform citizen-worker.rnMore ominously, the htle page features four hands—symbolizingrnLaw, Science, Order, and Trades—arranged in a swastika.rnA chief instrument of the government’s nationalist programrnwas the public school. The federal government—with the willingrncooperation of the states—pushed for the expansion of thernpublic school system in areas such as Southern Indiana, evenrnthough the people were well served by their religious schools.rnPublic school courses were taught in English, and civics was invariablyrngiven a high priority.rnBy the end of World War II, the federal government hadrnlargely succeeded in replacing the various European-Americanrnidentities with a “universal” American nationalism, and newrnimmigrants were forced to abandon their national identity andrnnative language and sign on to the “American way of life.” PostwarrnAmerican nationalism—built on democracy, capitalism,rnthe Pledge of Allegiance, hot dogs, baseball, and Rotary—mayrnhave been sufiicient to drive the Cold War, but it was insufficientrnto bind the nation or to act as a bulwark against alien cultures.rnPeople long for roots, for a sense of belonging. An abstractrnconception of democracy and capitalism can onlyrndisplace, not replace, the songs and stories, faith and food, languagernand kinship that compose a true national culture. Byrnalienating European-Americans from their national cultures inrnthe interwar period, the federal government replaced an emergingrnAmerican national identity with a false nationalism, andrnundermined our ability to withstand assault from Third Worldrncultures. When Lyndon Johnson signed the Immigration andrnNationality Act of 1965, removing the national preference forrnEuropean immigrants and opening the floodgates to ThirdrnWorld immigration, he signed the death warrant of postwar nationalism.rnIn the 1920’s and 30’s, the government attempted to consolidaternits power by destroying European national identities,rnbut since 1965 the federal government has used immigration —rnparticularly Third World immigration—as a tool to increase itsrnpower. Once again, the public schools are a primary battleground.rnHere in Rockford, the building of Barbour Two-WayrnLanguage Immersion Magnet School proceeds, and the federalrncourt has expressed its desire to see Spanish-language bilingualrnprograms implemented in all of Rockford’s schools. But isrnthis school educationally necessary, or is it simply an attempt atrnsocial engineering? According to the 1990 Census, the RockfordrnMetropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) has a population ofrn283,719—of which only 9,020 (3.18 percent) are of Hispanicrnorigin (in contrast, there are 102,616 people of German ancestry,rn51,023 of Irish, and 36,586 of Swedish). Of the 9,020 Hispanics,rn2,698 are enrolled in elementary or high school, and ofrnthat group, only 432 speak English “not well” or “not at all.”rn(Since the Rockford MSA is considerably larger than the Rockfordrnpublic school district, and includes two cities—Belviderernand Machesney Park—that have significant Hispanic populations,rnall of the Hispanic numbers are inflated.)rnBut Barbour School is not really meant for Hispanics whornneed additional instruction in English. As the school district’srnweb site notes:rnSpanish and English speaking students will be togetherrnin the same classroom to promote social interaction andrnlanguage learning through an interactive and cross-culturalrnsetting… . Barbour Magnet gives students the abilityrnto communicate with people that they would otherwisernnot have the chance to know [and] helps children tornunderstand and appreciate people from other cultures.rnUnder the federal court’s desegregation order, no more thanrn55 percent of the students in any given school in Rockford canrnAPRIL 1998/21rnrnrn