Pluribus Unum: How Then/How Now
E Pluribus Unum is a Latin term that has been used in the US coin since 1776. The term which directly translates to ‘out of may one’ became a de facto motto for the US till it was replaced by ‘In God We Trust’ in 1956. Understanding the relevance of the phrase and the role that it has played in the ideas that have been and are being adopted by the US is important in developing an understanding of its implication.
In its original employment the term E Pluribus Unum was used to portray the nature of US as a nation originating from an amalgamation of thirteen kingdoms.
The use of E Pluribus Unum as a leading ideology in strategies that the US employed in its involvement in the world wars and those that it employed thereafter led to its being labeled a melting pot. It is worth noting that the US did not engage in the initial phases of both the second and first word war but only played parts in the last critical stages and rebuilding nations that engaged in the wars. E Pluribus Unum implies that the US as a nation embraced a culture where different communities and cultural backgrounds came together in peaceful coexistence.
The involvement of the US in the Second World War was thus aimed at ensuring the end to a threat to development of homogeneous nations. Under this consideration, the US was against war not the Germans and the ideals driven by the Nazi who sought superiority over other races. The engagement of the US in rebuilding nations that were appreciative of capitalism goes in hand with developing a homogeneous society; an objective that is central to E Pluribus Unum. Development of a common ideology through different approaches in a society that is appreciative of this ideology is important to propagation of E Pluribus Unum.
Employment of different approaches is allowed; however, the ideologies that underpin the different approaches should be uniform throughout the different groups. Capitalism as a system that brought together Western Europe nations that were worst affected by the Second World War and the US is basically developed under the same principles that define E Pluribus Unum. It is worth noting that capitalism employed in an economic environment is defined by an environment where there are a number of players who seek common goals but have different resource ability due to the free market ideology.
Capitalism as an ideology ensures the development of markets where different players are presented with the same opportunities and success is thereby defined by resource ability and levels of organization that the different business entities afford in harnessing their opportunities. Such environments as it current is are defined by a large number of players and high levels of competition though the rules that players have to pay by are equally defined for all players. No one nation allows more immigrants into its society than the US.
Open immigration policies that defined the period just after the second world war and have been a hallmark of US foreign policy before increase in awareness on the effects of immigration and terrorism are all in line with the development of a society where different nationalities can come into the US and get absorbed into its culture to aid the development of its economy. The US allows more immigrant than any other nation and plays an important part in global policies especially in addressing issues that it feels are of global importance.
One of the key reasons given by successive US Presidents before invasion of nations or pronouncement of war against terrorism or even drugs is based on such nations’ purported support for ideologies that are detrimental to the development of a homogeneous society. The war against Vietnam, invasion of communist nations, war against terrorism and the Iraq invasion to seek weapons of mass destruction have all been done under the premise of ensuring global peace and unity by dealing with threats that are of global stature.
Globalization and technological development are variables in the present environment that define the levels of success that nations attain harnessing opportunities present in their environments. In fact globalism and technological development especially information technology plays a large part in shaping up a global economy that is predominantly capitalistic. The US has played large part in globalization for it is the home of many multinationals that shape the global economy.
The European Union which is a global economic force resulted from a pronounced need for common bargaining and so are a number of regional trading blocks that have come into existence. A technological development like the GPRS global positioning system that is under the control of the US government places it in a position where it is able to monitor other nations while providing them with a critical technology the same can be said of satellite technology.
A recent manifestation of the E Pluribus Unum is the 2008 economic crisis which shows that the ideology has spread all over the globe. Each nation is defined by its own approaches to economic development despite the advent of globalization. The SubPrime crisis that started in the US had negative effects on other nations hence the global stature of the crisis. This is a manifestation of the E Pluribus Unum in a wrong light where all feel the negative effect of an act or a crisis even if they were not involved in its perpetuation.
‘In God We Trust’ may have replace E Pluribus Unum as the official motto for the US government and its people however its manifestation is clear in both policies developed by the US government and variables that affect the economic environment defined by the US. Both negative and positive effects of its manifestation have been experienced thus though E Pluribus Unum came into being as depiction of the thirteen kingdoms that originally merged to from the US it has developed to be representative of the US and the globe.