Ain’t I an American?

I sent this letter to the editor of the Washington Post in response to a front-page article with a quote from John Boehner. Since they didn’t publish it, I thought I’d post it here (with a couple of edits).  I’m wondering if anybody else feels like I do on this….

Headine:  House Speaker John Boehner tells President Obama that “the American people don’t want to shut down the government and don’t want Obamacare.”

Just who are the “American People” he’s talking about?  I was born in America, but I really do believe in and want the Affordable Health Care Act.  So, for all the people who agree with me, Boehner and his group must have decided that we aren’t really “Americans,” even though we  were born in this country.  Or they must have decided that we aren’t really people.  I hate to have been so summarily dismissed and discounted.

I think the far-right conservatives who like to call themselves “the American people” use the term as a bullying tactic to make those who agree with them feel superior to those who don’t, and that the use of the term was intentionally implemented by those who want to control America. They are people who would rather not have the country be what it really is, a wonderfully diverse people who have a legitimate right to challenge their conservative view of what’s best for America.

Maybe if the conservatives in Congress saw themselves as representatives of a group of Americans, rather than “the American people,” they would realize that the rest of the American people are represented by those other folks in the House and the Senate.  Maybe if they respected the right of other Americans to disagree with them, they might be more willing to compromise on an agenda that makes sense for all of  America.

And that would make them truly patriotic.

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4 thoughts on “Ain’t I an American?

  1. Thanks Alice. I think if we focused on poverty as the number one issue, a whole lot of other things would fall into place. I don’t want to be disrespectful of those who fight for other very important issues, but I think our income inequality in this country is truly shameful and the source of lots of other ills. Working to correct it would help us all, even those in the 0.01 percent. Thanks for keeping us focused on what counts!

    • You’re so right, Holly. Another friend just posted the saying: If we do nothing, we get what we deserve. So yes, we need to work to correct it.

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