As the granddaughter of a Polish-Jewish couple who immigrated to the United States and learned English in the US and NEVER spoke it without an accent and who most often spoke Yiddish at home AND the granddaughter of a set of grandparents, American Baptist and Catholic, with roots in England, Ireland and supposedly France, I have always considered myself a mongrel. AND I have thought of most Americans as mongrels.
Obama is a mongrel, and he is quintessentially American, if you ask me. Jumping around a bit, I have been digging into Mexican history which of course I think Americans would really find very worth knowing more about. I came across the name David Carrasco, a third generation Mexican-American scholar at Harvard, in both the Divinity School and the Dept of Anthropology. I was interested to find out if his book on Aztec religion was available online (only to libraries and universities). In the process, I came across this letter he wrote in response to a David Brooks column in 2004. It addresses the old myth that our culture is at its core Anglo-Saxon. I think it is worth reading again.