This is meant to explain my positon on the term “American.” Naturalized citizens and natural born citizens of the United States are often referred to as Americans. However, the inhabitants of both North and South America are legitimately American.

As a matter of fact, America – both North and South, came to be known as such as a result of it’s discoverer. The first man to find the North American mainland (at Florida) was Americo Vespusio. Thus the American continents, un large terrestrial mass until divided by the Panama Canal, were named after him.

I am not sure as to who adopted the term American, and branded it a classifying name for citizens of t he United States; but whoever did may have been displaying the same kind of feeling of entitlement that left the native tribes of North America homeless. [That is not to imply that the French and Spaniards did not act in the same, or similar, manner toward the indigenous people in the lands they “conquered.”]

Using the term American for the sole identification of the citizens of the United States is like saying the Germans are Europeans but the French are simply French. [Note: This is simply an example and not to be taken as a judgement of the worth or value of either group.] That is exactly what we do when we call those who come from the United States, Americans, and those who come from Venezuela, Venezuelans. It is as ridiculous as saying that Canadians and Mexicans are not North Americans; or that Colombians and Puruvians are not South Americans. But if they are North and South Americans, isn’t it logical that they both be Americans too?

To me, Americans are those who live in the New World: the children of those who for one reason or another forsook their homelands and ended up in a terrritory unknown to all.

I truly believe someone should come up with a new term to describe the current “Americans.” In Spanish, we are estadounidenses (literally United Staters). Maybe “United Staters” is a far more logical, political- and socially correct term. After all, in the new era of globalization, no one should be given a misnomer as a categorical descriptor.