As usual, a conversation with one of my kids sparked a thought process that I have been unable to shake the past couple of days. To quote my secret lover, Henry Rollins, 'At the end of the day, I'm a thinking person', and sometimes it becomes quite burdensome.
I have a certain opinion about people who take patriotism to an extreme, and you are welcome to assume that the opinion is not a positive one. You know the type I'm referring to. If you slow down the next time you pass a predominantly white, lower income neighborhood (I didn't say Trailer Park, did you say Trailer Park?), you can hear beer cans being crushed on foreheads, shot gun blasts, mothers cursing at their children, Toby Keith's claim that he is an American soldier coming from a boom box held together by duct tape and a gamut of my favorite racial slurs. This happens to also be the most common place to find some of my overly patriotic friends. The ones that think they were born in this country not because the two cousins that found one another attractive pro-created here or because the laundromat that their mother went into labor in was located here but because God made sure that only the most deserving of our species were purged out onto American soil.
I am proud to be an American, most of the time, and I am very grateful that I live in this country. Why should I believe that the simple geographical location of my birth makes me any better than anyone else? Last time I checked, the United States was home to a very small portion of the world's population. Why has God forsaken so many and blessed so few? That is like persecuting someone for being born deaf or blind or retarded. Though we are genetically superior to those people, it is through no fault of their own. Not one person I know made sure the car that their parents were making out in the back of was in America before attaching themselves to the uterine wall. If that were the case, I could have been fooled into thinking that I was going to be Mexican given that my mom was drunk on margaritas when I so reluctantly attached myself.
Sing the National Anthem at ball games, fly an American flag in front of your house, cheer on your favorite Olympians. Hell, wear clothing made from American flag designs if you must. Just don't forget that you did not make yourself an American anymore than I made myself a narcissist that thinks you should care about this opinion.