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The United States
The United States of America consists of a federation of fifty states.
The landscape of the U.S.A. is varied; in fact there are forests, deserts and mountains. The three main mountain ranges are the Pacific Range, Rocky Mountains and the Appalachian Mountains. The highest peak is Mt. McKinley.
The central part of the nation is crossed by two long rivers: the Mississippi and the Missouri.
The United States is rich of lakes. The greatest are found in the region of the Great Lakes. They are: Lake Superior, Lake Michigan, Lake Huron, Lake Ontario and Lake Erie.
The climate is varied: there is an arctic climate in Alaska and a subtropical climate in Florida.
The American flag has thirteen stripes, which represent the original thirteen states and fifty stars, the number of the actual states.
There is a presidential system of government in the U.S.A. The president is elected by the people for a period of four years and can be elected only twice.
He must be a native-born American. He lives and works in the White House in Washington, D.C.
The president is the head of state and has a lot of power.
Congress is made up of the House of Representatives and the Senate. The Senate has 100 members, who are elected for six years; the House of Representatives has 435 members, elected for two years.
There are two main political parties: the Republican Party and the Democratic Party.
Washington is the capital of the U.S.A. Washington is situated between Virginia and Maryland. Washington has called so in honour of the first president, George Washington, and because it is found in the District of Columbia. Millions of tourists come to Washington every day to visit National Gallery of Arts, the Library of Congress, et cetera. Washington has also several universities, such as George Washington University and Howard University, but Washington is not the principal city of America, because the principal city of America is New York.
New York is the biggest city in U.S.A. The first people of New York were the Native American, while the first European to arrive in the area where New York is now, was Giovanni da Verrazano in 1525. In 1664 the island was occupied by people English and it was called New York.
New York is made up of five boroughs: Manhattan, The Bronx, Brooklyn, Staten Island, and Queens.
In Manhattan there is the Statue of Liberty, the most famous monument in New York.
In Brooklyn there is the Brooklyn Bridge, the most famous bridge in the world.
New York is full of skyscrapers; the most important is the Empire State Building.
In the U.S.A. there are two serious problems: pollution and racism.
The environment includes the water we drink, the air we breathe, the food we eat, etc.
plants and animals are important for our life, but they find it hard to live and grow because the man have polluted the environment. The factories cause acid rain and destroy the ozone layer. The acid rain is formed from gas and water that fall on the earth and they pollute the plantations. Our planet is danger. If we don’t stop killing it, we will kill ourselves.
The other serious problem in the U.S.A. is the racism. The colour problem must be traced back when Sir John Hawkins went to Africa and captured thousands of Negroes and carried them to America. Here, they were sold in slave markets to work as slaves in the plantations of cotton and tobacco.
But, when the American Civil War ended, slavery was abolished and the Negroes became free.
But the problem remained, because the white Americans didn’t accept black people.
Black people could not go to the same schools, bars, cinemas as the white people.
In the 1950s, the black leader Martin Luther King started a non-violent movement against racism; he struggled for racial equality and for this reason he murdered in 1968.
In fact, today the black people can be policemen, judges, politicians and they can practise all the sports.
The American people are very fond of sport. Millions of Americans are attracted by many sports, especially football and baseball, but also basketball, golf, volleyball, tennis, hockey and swimming.
Football and baseball are most popular sports in the U.S.A.
Football is played by two teams of eleven players each, while baseball is played by two teams of nine players each. Together baseball and football are considered a typically American sport.
Basketball and volleyball are very popular especially at schools and universities.
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