For some years now I've realized how sick and tired I am of hearing people say how ashamed they are of being American because of the Bush presidency and our foreign policy. I'm a first generation American on my father's side. His family came to America from Hungary in 1900. He was born in Pecs, Hungary on May 10, 1899, so he was 6 months old passing through Ellis Island in New York. My mom's side of the family was 2nd & 3rd generation American. Still close to their immigrant roots.
Now, am I bothered by Bush and the US's foreign policy? Yes. I'm even embarrassed by it. The current administration has done huge amounts of damage to our country's credibility here and abroad. I know that rebuilding international goodwill is going to be a herculean effort and that the actions taken in this administration will not be forgotten nor forgiven for a long time to come.
But when I hear people I know who have never voted, never volunteered in their community, never participated in local government (not even to attend a zone hearing in their neighborhood because a neighbor wants to add on to their house), or never learned a helping skill/trade, state how ashamed they are to be American, I want to ship them back to their ancestral homelands. But of course, they probably wouldn't or couldn't go. The women who say so would have to step into second and third class citizenship and loss of privilege and independence. The men who say so would have to give up any idea of upward mobility and economic independence and would be second class citizens because they'd be immigrants and have to prove their worthiness to live in those countries.