What Does Being an American Mean to Me?

What Does Being an American Mean to Me?

Today is Presidents’ Day. What better time to reflect on what it means to be an American? For me, being an American citizen is an honor and a responsibility, not a birthright. Being American is a state of mind, not a state of residence. I thank God every day for putting me here in the U.S. at this time in history where I have the opportunity to have my own opinions, to share those opinions, to vote my conscience, to be as successful as I want to be, and to raise my children with all of the benefits of this great land.

So, to the Susan Sarandons and Alec Baldwins of the world I ask, “What does being an American mean to you?” I understand that you don’t like war. I also understand that you believe the American government is doing it wrong. I have heard the cries demanding to know, “Why should the rich get richer while the poor get poorer?” and the outraged demonstrators waiving their Anti-Bush posters. To this I say, “You have a right to your opinion and thanks to the United States Constitution, you also have the right to voice that opinion.”

I realize that there are many people that were born in the United States because their parents, grandparents, or great-grandparents migrated here many generations before they were born. For those Americans that are here for that reason, I want to let you know that another privilege you have as an American is the freedom to leave if you wish to do so. It has obviously not occurred to these individuals that just because their ancestors viewed the American way of life as a positive change that does not mean that they are obligated to remain here. There are a number of other countries that do not operate in the same manner as the U.S. in fact no other countries operate in the same manner. Oh wait, that is exactly WHY America exists today, isn’t it? Of course, I remember now…

Was it third or fourth grade when we learned about the Mayflower, Plymouth Rock, and the Pilgrims? Stay with me here, I know most of the Hollywood...

Similar Essays