Wednesday, July 4, 2018

For the Fourth

I have written that "pride" is an overdone and often inappropriate sentiment.  That pride in things -- like ancestry, race, etc. -- over which we have no control is misplaced; that we should be proud only of what we ourselves have done or accomplished.  We may revere our ancestry, but we can be proud of ourselves and our descendants, because they are of our own influence.

Today, of course, we take pride in the 242 years of the United States of America, and although I am American by birth, I continue to be American by choice.  That pride is a legitimate one, and I have no hesitation in shouting that pride across the Internet through this poor medium.

We celebrate that 242 years happily and loudly, by killing cows and grilling them.  Now that's American.  Have a beer, too.  See you tomorrow.

Copyright 2018 by Robert Sutton
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  1. I am an American by choice...albeit in an unusual way. I was born to American citizens who had spent several years in their ancestral country working for the US government. Being of the same descent (Greek), I was handed dual citizenship at birth. When the time came to choose - the first time I got a TS clearance - there was no hesitation.

    It strikes me that most of the (legal) immigrants I know can give a better explanation of why this country is special, and what the advantages are with living in it, than most of the native-born Americans I know.

    If you were born and raised here, you lack perspective. You have never seen endemic corruption, or a true class culture, where you are told, regularly, that you must always remember your place. You have never seen the thousand ways that opportunity is destroyed in favor of connected elites - in so many aspects of life. You take for granted, and many of you want to limit, freedom of speech, because you just assume that places like Europe, or Japan, or Australia have constitutions that guarantee it, and so it must not be that rare. I don't have a polite response for you.

    Robert, if it was easy to comment on this site, you would get a depressingly large number of comments denigrating you for your expression of pride. I'm glad there are at least a few Americans willing to profess their pride in this country. With our ability to self-criticize, we often forget what a blessing it is to live here.

    Happy fourth of July.

  2. And to you as well. I really don't feel anything for those who are not at least "happy", if not proud, to be Americans. Your sentiments are well-expressed and should be read to a wider audience than the meager one I can offer.

    1. Thank you, Robert. It seems that an engineering education left me numerate and somewhat literate :)... who knew