The melting pot failed to function in one crucial area. Religions and nationalities, however different, generally learned to live together, even to grow together, in America. But color was something else. Reds were murdered like wild animals. Yellows were characterized as a peril and incarcerated en masse during World War II for no really good reason by our most liberal president. Browns have been abused as the new slave labor on farms. The blacks, who did not come here willingly, are now, more than a century after emancipation by Lincoln, still suffering a host of slavelike inequalities.
Perhaps the whole root of our trouble, the human trouble, is that we will sacrifice all the beauty of our lives, will imprison ourselves in totems, taboos, crosses, blood sacrifices, steeples, mosques, races, armies, flags, nations, in order to deny the fact of death, the only fact we have.