Have you given it much thought lately? What does it mean to you, being an American? I know that sadly to some it means being a “home-grown” type of person. You know what I mean, born and bred right here in the “Good ‘Ol U.S of A” as some like to call it.
Now there are those that would describe that as Patriotic. And there are those that would describe that as Traitorous. Where do you stand? The U.S. is made up of so many different cultures and races and blends of them. For this reason, I would find it had to believe that you need to be “home-grown” to be an American.
Really just think about it. How many centuries ago did races other than true Native Americans come to this land (North America)? Vikings came here in what the 10th century? Around the year 1000 A.D., the Viking explorer Leif Erikson, son of Erik the Red, sailed to a place he called “Vinland,” in what is now the Canadian province of Newfoundland. However, there were already people here, native people. Aren’t they American?
Native or Not, Americans…
When I think of what it means to be an American, my thoughts do not turn to some big list of criteria. I do not care where your family came from. I do not care if they were (or are) wealthy or poor. Side note, I do not say Rich because wealthy (money) is not the same as being rich. You can be rich and be financially poor. That thought set aside there are some very basic things that I believe it takes to be an American. What about you, do you have a core set of beliefs about this?
So, in my opinion, and that is really what you are getting here, my opinion and thoughts. You are either born on American soil, such as, in the United States, or on a U.S. Military Base somewhere else in the world as long as your parent was serving there on orders when you were born. That is the easy choice, you were born an American citizen. But on the military base issue there are sometimes hoops to be jumped through for the birth certificate to show correct citizenship.
What does it mean to being an American?Let’s Dive Head First into that Worm Hole America!
Likewise, if your parents immigrated here (even illegally) and then you were born here in the United States, you are an American. Honestly that is why for decades, nae probably centuries families have come here with the wife obviously pregnant. Hoping to give their child a better life, as an American citizen.
Usually this is just the beginning of where the topic gets juicy. If you really think about it now, wouldn’t you do the same for your unborn child? Walk through hell and high water to make sure that they have a better life than you? I have yet to meet the parent that says no.
It Really is About the Children…
This of course leads us straight down to the Mexican/American border, doesn’t it? The children, let’s not even talk about the adults or the families living here in the States that have family trying to cross that border. Just let the thought of those children sink in for a few minutes. Infants left at the border with the hopes that they would be taken in and sent to relatives in the U.S. Then there are so many children who are under 10 years old, down there alone, coming in droves. Their parents sent them with phone numbers written down in clothes, on paper that is safety-pinned to pockets or hats.
Some people (I even know some that think this way) think of this as an evil plot by some foreign government to take over ours. I see this as a desperate attempt by parents and families to save their children. I know that even now, I would move mountains to see the “children” in my life do well, be healthy and succeed in life. That is in quotes because some of those “children” are in their forties. And none of them are mine directly, nieces, nephews, “greats” as I call them, and step children and step-grandkids too.
So tell me Why America…
Why America do so many people find hatred when there are so many of us, that I would like to think of as the ever-so-silent majority that still find love? Is it our silence? Is it that we are truly the in-between generation? I am at the end of one and the beginning of another of the defined generations in the pic below. Yet I am uniquely me, just like everyone else is an individual. But does our generations dictate any of our actions and reactions to what is happening in our world today?
My answer is yes, our generations do help round out our decisions in life and how we act in and about what is going on in the world right now. For instance, if you listen to people and society right now, being silent is bad. If we are not out voicing our opinion for all the world to hear, we are part of the problem. And everyone knows that you are either part of the problem or part of the solution.
However, when I sit and talk with my friends and with acquaintances even, what I have found is astonishing. No, not really, it doesn’t surprise me at all. For the people that I consider my true friends, no matter what race, color, financial status, religion, or sexual orientation. I think that is all the variables. We all seem to agree that the world, not just the United States, is a hard place right now. There is a lot of crime, a lot of good people who die for the wrong reasons (is there ever a right reason?). However, standing up and screaming about it isn’t the answer. There are people who do not deserve the wealth that they have and people who have nothing to give that give it all anyway.
Who has the Right to be an American? Besides, What does it mean to be an American, anyway?
Basically, there always have been and probably always will be good and bad people. All that we as a society can try to do is help the good outweigh the bad.. And sometimes that means children coming from other countries being let into ours, unaccompanied. Because it is the right thing to do. Because, my fellow Americans, these children deserve the right to have the opportunity for a better life right here in the “Good ‘Ol U.S of A”.
And before you get your panties in an uproar, I am a firm believer in lawful immigration also. Why, you ask? Because, if you are born here, you sure as God is watching did not need to take a test to be a citizen. However, legal immigrants, they study, they learn the hardest language in the world to learn, American English. And then they wait for years to take their test to prove their knowledge of what we take for granted. How many of you would be kicked out if there was a test to remain an American, oh please, do tell.
So here we are America, what does it take to be an American? In my humble opinion, desire. If you were born here and don’t like being an American, you have the option, the desire so be it, to leave. Skip country, Adios, Slan, Sayonara, Auf Wiedersehen, Arrivederci. If you have the desire to become an American citizen, just do it the right way.
Namaste ~ Momma Janet