I know it’s not popular to be patriotic. I know this country is steeped in centuries of ignorant, violent, dangerous outlooks and behavior. So this isn’t gong to be an ‘I know this but…’ set up. It is what it is and I hope we are on a path to fundamental change. Our country is deeply, radically flawed. I still find pride in claiming it and I know it’s because of my heritage.
As immigrants my grandfather with only a 3rd grade education (from a 3rd world country) was able to build the American dream and have his family live in a very comfortable, indulged way. America remains one of the few countries where this can happen.
And SM has done a wonderful job of condensing the world, opening it up to people who might never get to see another side of the world or different cultures. It has also allowed for some bullshit narratives. (Narratives that have been around for a long time but now get propagated exponentially.) Easy intimidating, if you will, by the somewhat savvy of the green ingenues who don’t realize just because you speak with a sexy accent and come from a beautiful place steeped in history and castles you might be talking out of your ass just as much as that toothless hick from Alabama, maybe more.
Having lots of friends and having worked over seas and extensive travel – let me kill the myth. Their shattered glass houses are taped together with as much if not more electrical tape than ours. So maybe the loudest of them want to pipe down, ‘mow their damn lawns and sit the hell down, Dan’. Because that entitled pontificating by the raging hypocritical just grates me like a cat being rubbed the wrong way.
Ok, rant over.
As always my family will celebrate the 4th as I teach my kids about the many avenues of good, great, bad and awful this country has taken and continues to take. During the year and over the years we will talk whenever possible of how to craft a better world and their part in such a narrative. But I won’t ever throw the baby out with the bathwater. I’ve seen too much, listened instead of mouthed off, to get conned by the con men.
My grandfather always said “Mia darlin’, nowhere like the USA.” It wasn’t exactly a compliment, the way he said this. It’s hard to describe his meaning. The best description is respect. Respect for the country that gave him his livelihood and respect for what that country could be, even if we’re no where near such perfection.