Throughout “Let America be America Again”, Hughes contrasts his hopes for America with the reality of life for the many minority groups in America being denied the true “American Dream”. He introduces the original dreams and goals of those who came to the United States because they saw it as a haven where they could be free from all rule and any persecution in their homelands. In the eyes of the speaker those dreams of America do not stand true for all saying, “America was never America to me” (5). The poem begins with the speakers’ desire for America to be the America it once was however, he sarcastically says this image of America is false. The persona explains even the earliest Americans practiced slavery and oppression, destroying the native peoples in order to build their homes and towns. The idea of “America” exists only in dreams.