Proudly Red, White and Blue

Those who know me may guess correctly that I was challenging as a child.  I challenged authority, rules and dogmas.  I’m a part of the “should be seen but not heard” generation and in our house, voicing an opinion contrary to Dad’s was not a smart move.  Especially at the dinner table.

One night early in my teenage years (read:  belligerent, rebellious and pre-alcoholic), the end of the Vietnam War was in the news.  I can’t remember exactly how the conversation went, but the bottom line was, I announced that I thought war was stupid and I was entertaining the idea of moving to Canada.

Under the glaring lights of my father’s eyes, he responded with five words, “Let me help you pack.”

Flash forward 35+ years to the present.  I finally have an understanding of my Dad’s patriotism.  As an old Navy man, I’ve always known that his love of country runs deep, but it’s more than that.  His collar may be as blue as his politics and his neck may be a slight shade of red, but it’s more than that.  In his straight-up, no-nonsense day-to-day life, he’s much more like Archie Bunker than Donald Trump and maybe that’s the point.

My father is an American, for better or for worse.  I’ve never asked him, but my guess is that he doesn’t support war.  But defend his land, his country?  Lend a hand to a soldier or a veteran?  Hell, yes.  With everything he’s got.  After all, he’s an American.

In honor of Veteran’s Day, and my dad, I’d like to unequivocally state that I no longer want to move to Canada.  After all, I’m an American.

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