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Cindy Van Professor Munoz English 101 14 September 2018 In the essay “The Color of Family Ties” by Naomi Gerstel and Natalia Sarkisian

Cindy Van
Professor Munoz
English 101
14 September 2018
In the essay “The Color of Family Ties” by Naomi Gerstel and Natalia Sarkisian, the authors talking about traditional nuclear families are not the only ones can supportive relationships and strong family connections. In the other hand, minority families also stated that their families illustrate the most supportive relationships and strongest family ties. According to Gerstel and Sarkisian, they state “we often hear that Black and Latino/a, especially Puerto Rican, families, are more disorganized than White families, and their ties are weaker, because rates of non-marriage and single parenthood are higher among these minority groups” (45). This shows the reason why minority groups, such as Black and Latino/a families are organized than White families are because due to high rate of non-marriage and single parenthood, the kid grow up with only one of their parent perspectives on ways of living rather than having both parents to be there to support them every step of their way.

Therefore, extended family role is to provide something that the family needs. White families are likely to receive emotional and financial support for their extended family. Black family’s kin tend to provide more practical support to the families such as babysitting and running errands. The income gap between races, black families tend to have less money to give and they have both parents of the household that are working and making money. These families need more people helping with smaller task to provide for their family.

The author also points out “Minority individuals are more likely to live in extended family homes than Whites and in many ways, more likely to help out their aging parents, grandparents, adult children, brothers, sisters, cousins, aunts, uncles, and other kin” (45). In my opinion, I believe nontraditional families are more likely to live with extended family than Whites.
The author says, “Instead of hoping that poor families pull themselves out of poverty by their own bootstraps, social policy should explicitly aim to rectify economic disadvantages” (52). In my opinion, minority families are the ones that struggles the most because they can only depend on marriage. In other words, if we help improve the social economic and financial problem for families this will help change their life. If we help solve those in need people then a lot of parents, children will have better life. Therefore, minority families will be able to attend college, graduate, find good job, earn good pay.

In “Looking for work” by Gary Soto, the story is about nine-year-old Mexican American boy who wants his family to imitate the “perfect families” portrayed on TV. These families seem to get along others because he believes that is what television shows families to be like. If he can get money and have better setup for his family, he believes that this will make them get along and make them happier. Soto States “mimicked me and the same day that I asked him to wear shoes he came to the dinner table in only his swim trunks” (20). Soto quote show that he has a good relationship with his brother. He believed that his family doesn’t have to dressed up or have a nice house as he desires, but he still enjoying with his family. He understands that no family is perfect, but they are still loving and supportive the family.
Soto decides “to become wealthy, and right away!” (Soto, 26). He starts looking for job to satisfy his desire for a better lifestyle. He takes a rake from the garage and sweeps the streets in search of work. He offers leaf raking services to his neighbors, despite it being summer, and there not being any leaves to rake. Every neighbor that hires Soto has him do a task other than what he offers. He runs errands, weeds gardens, and does anything the neighbors ask to get money.
He suddenly decides one day that money is what he needs to have a life mirroring “the comfortable lives of white kids.” (28). Soto desperately wants to escape the everyday life not feeling sadness he attributes to his Latino heritage. I think Soto aspires to live a life like a white family do. He wants to find a job and earn a lot of money and be a wealthy boy. He believed that if he became wealthy he could improve his family’s wellbeing.

They wore bright clothes; toys tumbled from their closets.” (28). He includes that white families have a lot of money and their lifestyle was deprived from Mexican American families.

The author points out the little differences between the “comfortable lives of white kids” who hopped into bed with kisses and woke to glasses of fresh orange juice.” (29) and his own family. instead of loud dinners consisting of “belly laughs “and “pointing fingers at one another.” (29), Gary was jealous of how the dinner was and how everybody dressed up.

He seemed to be jealous of his neighbor David King, who was the only kid he knew who “resembled the middle class.” (30). When I was reading the story, I can picture the conversation in my head where they were talking, and I can even picture where it took place at.

In “An Indian Story” by Roger Jack is about family solidarity and care giving within a minority family. When jack is a young boy, his mother died, then his father remarried and started a new family that made the boy living uncomfortable. After that, he decided to go living with his love mother’s sister, Aunt Greta. After Jack move in living with her, he was very close to her. When he stated, “I walked to Aunt Greta’s house and asked if I could move in with her since i already spend so much time with her anyway” (454). This example of strong ties to extended family that in this story. The author states,” She (Gera) had so much love and knowledge to share, which she passed on to me naturally and freely” (454). Tradition is very important to Greta’s family because of their Indian culture and Greta shared it with Jack. Jack and Aunt Greta have a good relationship. She became a mother of him as they shared many adventures together.
Aunt Greta said, “Go and stand in the middle of the circle and pray for something good to happen to you.” (461). Jack is with Aunt Greta and Aunt Greta told Jack to pray. Greta wanted something good to happen to Jack. Jack was following Greta wishes. For example, I knew better than to doubt Aunt Greta. I knew better than to doubt Aunt Greta’s wishes or superstitions. Then the moment came to pass.

Jack states, Yeah, yeah,” I heard myself repeating. So, by the time I really was to leave she clued me in on her new philosophy: it wasn’t that I was leaving her, it was just that she wouldn’t be around to take care of me much anymore” (461). Greta was talking to Jack. Greta can’t take care of Jack forever. Jack went and visited Greta. The whole family told her that Greta will be okay, and that Jack doesn’t need to worry too much about her. The whole family went and visited Greta. For example, she told me, “Good Indians stick ‘together,” and that I should search out our people who were alreadythere, but not forget those who were still at home.

Jack Dad said, “Your Aunt Greta is sick” (462). Jack found out that his Aunt Greta is sick. Jack doesn’t know why Greta is sick. Jack is there by Greta side. The doctor is trying their best to cure Greta. The doctors don’t know what’s wrong with her yet. They just told me to advise her family of the possibility that it could be serious.” For example, I only half heard what he was saying. “Son, are you there?””Yeah.””Did you hear me? Did you hear what I said?””Yeah. I don’t think you have to worry about Aunt Greta though.She’ll be all right. Like the old timers used to say, ‘she might go away for a while, but she’ll be back,” and I hung up the telephone unalarmed.

In this essay the three nontraditional families show the supportive relationship and strongest family ties. In the essay I got to learn about nontraditional families and minority families. When I analyze the supportiveness of the three families both are great example of nontraditional families. The two stories “An Indian story” and “Looking for work” shows a connection.

Soto, Gary. “Looking for work.” Rereading America: Cultural Contexts for Critical Thinking and Writing. By Gary Colombo, Robert Cullen, and Bonnie Lisle. Boston, MA: Bedford /St. Martins, 2010. 49-51. print.

Gerstel, Naomi and Natalia Sarkisian. The Color of the Family Ties: Race, Class, Gender and Extended Family Involvement.” Rereading America: Cultural Contexts for critical Thinking and writing. Ed. Gary Colombo, Robert Cullen, and Bonnie Lisle. Boston, MA: Bedford/St. Martins, 2010. 61-68. Print.

Jack, Roger. An Indian Story.” Rereading America: Cultural Contexts for critical Thinking and Writing. Ed. Gary Colombo, Robert Cullen, and Bonnie Lisle. Boston, MA: Bedford/St Martins, 2010. 52-60. print.