Culture is an assortment of values; beliefs, traditions, customs and ways of live shared by a particular set of people. The United States is a diverse and multicultural nation; therefore, interaction with different cultures is inescapable. As such, knowing and embracing other cultures allows us to acquire greater inter-cultural competency which is deemed necessary in the workplaces, establishing connections and friendships and initiating conversations with people from other nationalities and cultural backgrounds.
In my family, adherence to the God’s commandments and respect for the elderly were among the cultural traits that run down from one generation to the other. My parents have always emphasized the significance of walking in the ways of God as well as maintaining family values. In particular, my mother used to “la famille, c’est sacré” which mean family is holy. My both parents worked tirelessly to feed and maintain the entire family which comprised of aunts, uncles and cousins from both sides. We lived in one big house and despite the disagreements and conflicts that arose from time to time, the love of God and respect for each other surpassed the perceived differences. It is common trait for the Latinos to look after their elderly, especially grandparents and great grandparents. The sacrifices and commitments they made when they were young and still working ought to be rewarded. Education is also a key aspect that most of the Latino parents emphasize on their children. My parents entered America as immigrants without even a high school diploma. They did odd jobs to make ends meet. As such, they have always reminded us about the necessity of attaining a college degree to live a decent life in the future.
The teachings from my parents as well as from my religions have emphasized the need of treating everyone equal irrespective of their cultural backgrounds and social status among other factors. Therefore, learning about other cultures allows us to be unbiased and cognizant of the beliefs embraced by people. The American belief that everyone should be viewed and treated equally may not necessarily apply in other countries. It is important to learn about other cultures and how they do or approach issues. By respecting their way of life, they tend to reciprocate by doing the same and this nurtures a good atmosphere for interacting with each other. Eventually, we become competent intercultural communicators. Interaction with different cultures requires using the appropriate form of communicating. Understanding how people in a particular culture communicate will help lessen the amount of misinterpretation and create a more welcoming environment.