I'm an American! I think. (1 Viewer)

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Kim Chee

I deleted myself
Like the words Hipster, Oogle and Terrorist, I think the word "American" may have lost its meaning as well. I'm so confused about the meaning of the word that I am not sure what it means to be an American anymore.

If I am born here am I an American?
If I say I'm an American, does that make me an American?
If I'm a Canadian citizen, am I an American?
If I pay taxes, does that work?
How about a passport?

This country was founded by people who wanted freedom and fought for it. I'm pretty sure they were Americans.

I'm curious if there are any Americans here. Perhaps you can share your idea of what makes an American.
 
We sell all kinds of other stuff in our Etsy store!

urchin

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I say this with a black militant mindset so keep that in mind.

I can NEVER be an American. If you want the long answer then I recommend reading or listening to one of Malcolm X's speeches. In short until people of color have equal standing with whites in society and law we can never really be Americans.
 
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K

Kim Chee

I deleted myself
I say this with a black militant mindset so keep that in mind.

I can NEVER be an American. If you want the long answer then I recommend reading or listening to one of Malcolm X's speeches. In short until people of color have equal standing with whites in society and law we can never really be Americans.
I'm not black nor am I a person of any color, so I have difficulty understanding the word "equal". Something I don't have difficulty understanding is that there is a family of African Americans residing in the White House who's head of household happens to hold the highest public office in the nation. There are also many programs which I do not qualify for, government contracts which (if I were to bid) I may not get as a person of color with a less competitive bid (pricewise) was chosen and quite a few jobs which offer preferential treatment to non-whites. I'm not sure how people of color will achieve equality given the preferential treatment accorded by law. At the same time, I'm not sure how eliminating these race based preferences would be perceived by the public. Damned if you do, damned if you don't.

Think you have it hard, try being a woman.

Fortunately for me, I do qualify for some of those government goodies. I'm a veteran and somebody decided that we (vets) should get some preference as well.

As an American, I haven't been waving any flag in the last 20 or so years.
 

iamwhatiam

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I like how J. Krishnamurti put it in one his talks to an audience:

"To love anything beautiful in a country is normal and natural, but when that love is used by exploiters in their own interest it is called nationalism. Nationalism is fanned into imperialism, and then the stronger people divide and exploit the weaker, with the Bible in one hand and a bayonet in the other. The world is dominated by the spirit of cunning, ruthless exploitation, from which war must ensue. This spirit of nationalism is the greatest stupidity.

Every individual should be free to live fully, completely. As long as one tries to liberate one's own particular country and not man, there must be racial hatreds, the divisions of people and classes. The problems of man must be solved as a whole, not as confined to countries or peoples."
 

Ristoncor

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I've been wondering about this too. In a lot of other countries there seems to be some sort of set culture, or at least a perceived one. The only real "culture" that comes to mind for America is hot dogs and rednecks. Not that that's how I perceive America, but that's what it seems like other people see it as.

I think to be an American, you were born here or you're a citizen. There's really no definition. I kind of see America as just a jumble of different cultures with no real definite defining factor. I don't know. Maybe freedom of speech, but that's not always the case here in some situations. So really, maybe, just a place where other people come.
 

urchin

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Having a black family in the White House means absolutely dick, honestly.

I know women have it rough. I'm an intersectional kind of person.

As far as the rest, I honestly tire of trying to tell people I know about it all much less people in other areas. There are others who may want to take up that mantle. I leave that to them.
 

drewski

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"Welcome to the United Snakes
Land of the thief, home of the slave

The grand imperial guard where the dollar is sacred, and power is God"
-Brother Ali


My own words:

This country was home to people that were here way before us. It was stolen, then down the line some white guys said, "Hey we should make this place a free country 'cause we like to be free". Ironically, as they said this they had black slaves doing work for them in the backyard. Some other shit happened, then somewhere down the line it was finally agreed it should be called "The United States of America". But it doesn't really matter what the fuck it's called.

It's just a place that has been conquered and exploited by billions of people that think they own pieces of land cause they bought it but nobody really owns shit. Once a natural disaster comes, or we just destroy ourselves, all of our concepts of ownership and rights will be wiped out. Rights aren't rights if you can take 'em away from someone anyway. They're temporary privileges.

I was born here, but it doesn't make me anything and I'm not significant. So no, I don't see how I'm "American" or "Swedish" or whatever. It's just a label people created. I'm...just a being. That's the way I see it.
 

notOK

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Being an American is Rad. There are all these different states that usually don't extradite, so you got a lotta chances to split if you don't wanna deal with certain legal entanglements. But it sucks that if one state takes your license, other states won't issue you one.

It also is lame that you can't pay cops to go away. But then in places where you can I guess they go fishing for the palm grease. Here they just rob you.

Being an American also doesn't mean much. It's not like during the Roman empire when having citizenship carried certain rights and privilege. White privilege is highly overstated. A lot of people I respect and consider intelligent disagree.
 
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K

Kim Chee

I deleted myself
But it sucks that if one state takes your license, other states won't issue you one.
It was not that long ago that if you fucked off a ticket in a state that the state you're licensed in wouldn't know. You could do business with the DMV all day long without settling tickets.

You could get foodstamps in multiple states as well.

Welcome to a more unified America!

To me, being American is also about changes.
 
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PrimalCricket

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"Welcome to the United Snakes
Land of the thief, home of the slave

The grand imperial guard where the dollar is sacred, and power is God"
-Brother Ali


My own words:

This country was home to people that were here way before us. It was stolen, then down the line some white guys said, "Hey we should make this place a free country 'cause we like to be free". Ironically, as they said this they had black slaves doing work for them in the backyard. Some other shit happened, then somewhere down the line it was finally agreed it should be called "The United States of America". But it doesn't really matter what the fuck it's called.

It's just a place that has been conquered and exploited by billions of people that think they own pieces of land cause they bought it but nobody really owns shit. Once a natural disaster comes, or we just destroy ourselves, all of our concepts of ownership and rights will be wiped out. Rights aren't rights if you can take 'em away from someone anyway. They're temporary privileges.

I was born here, but it doesn't make me anything and I'm not significant. So no, I don't see how I'm "American" or "Swedish" or whatever. It's just a label people created. I'm...just a being. That's the way I see it.
Well said man, well said
 
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T

Tick Dickler

I deleted myself
if you live in america, and truly love your country, that makes you amuricen imo. i wouldnt call a britt bong who hates britain, britain.
 

West

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I think that America was started on noble principles but sustained itself on the sweat and blood of native peoples and African slaves as well as the impoverished in general. It's been ruled by various leaders as part of the same corrupt government under the influence of corporations, wealthy individuals, and some people's interpretations of "God".

That being said, I'm proud to be an American - not a member of this country but someone who lives in an area with such a rich history and myriad of cultures. It means the same thing to me as being proud to be Oregonian or a human - it's not something I can do much about short of moving, but I feel like I've got an American state of mind a la Mountain Man or Hobo and I've got no problem telling somebody I'm an American.
 

drewski

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I think that America was started on noble principles but sustained itself on the sweat and blood of native peoples and African slaves as well as the impoverished in general. It's been ruled by various leaders as part of the same corrupt government under the influence of corporations, wealthy individuals, and some people's interpretations of "God".

That being said, I'm proud to be an American - not a member of this country but someone who lives in an area with such a rich history and myriad of cultures. It means the same thing to me as being proud to be Oregonian or a human - it's not something I can do much about short of moving, but I feel like I've got an American state of mind a la Mountain Man or Hobo and I've got no problem telling somebody I'm an American.
 

West

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"It means the same thing to me as being proud to be Oregonian or a human - it's not something I can do much about short of moving, but I feel like I've got an American state of mind a la Mountain Man or Hobo and I've got no problem telling somebody I'm an American."

I think I stated my reasons for having pride pretty well - so it wasn't just some vague or obscure concept but more of an ideal... not what Carlin was talking about.

I don't think I'm better than anyone else because I'm American or Oregonian or Texan or anything. I just like to represent where I come from. I am fine with anyone else being proud of the places they were born or have lived in.

And beyond all that, this is a segment from a stand-up comedy sketch...
It might be pertinent for you to know that I back the statement made by socialist candidate Eugene Debs - “I have no country to fight for; my country is the earth; I am a citizen of the world.”
 

drewski

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"It means the same thing to me as being proud to be Oregonian or a human - it's not something I can do much about short of moving, but I feel like I've got an American state of mind a la Mountain Man or Hobo and I've got no problem telling somebody I'm an American."

I think I stated my reasons for having pride pretty well - so it wasn't just some vague or obscure concept but more of an ideal... not what Carlin was talking about.

I don't think I'm better than anyone else because I'm American or Oregonian or Texan or anything. I just like to represent where I come from. I am fine with anyone else being proud of the places they were born or have lived in.

And beyond all that, this is a segment from a stand-up comedy sketch...
It might be pertinent for you to know that I back the statement made by socialist candidate Eugene Debs - “I have no country to fight for; my country is the earth; I am a citizen of the world.”
The George Carlin video reply was absolutely relevant because as he stated, it makes no sense to be proud of something that was simply accident by birth and not an achievement.

You said you're proud to be from a place rich with history...anyone can be proud to be from any place because every place is rich with history, America isn't anything special. In fact, it's just as good and bad as Germany's history considering how many people we've slaughtered as the good 'muricans that we are, or like to think we are. Be happy to be an "American" if you must be something. Pride in this case doesn't make any sense. That's all I'm saying.
 

Thrasymachus

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America was founded by people who wanted freedom? Lol! Your political views are so naive and your historical knowledge is so inadequate, I don't know where to begin. America has two tendencies, religious zeal that has lately warped to the new and most dominant religion, the worship of money and a second historical tendency, the lust for the blood the of outsiders. America was founded by violent settler-colonists who expropriated the land and massacred, genocided and destroyed the original native inhabitants, who were by all human measure overall better people than the settler colonists than replaced them in every facet of human life besides vices like greed, bloodthirstiness, etc.

My family came to this country from Greece in the late 1960's. From what I understand my grandmother's brother came here first, became semi-successful eventually owning his own coffee shop and auto garage/gas station and tried to get the rest of his family to come and largely succeeded, as all of his sisters and their families came and so did his mother. Now if to some extent my grandmother and grandmother were not inspired or persuaded by this tale of "success", maybe they could have objected, and said something mattered to them more than the prospect of more money abroad like that they were Greeks and it meant more to them have their family stay Greek than to make more money in America, or that they wanted to stay in the real community where they grew up and where their family had long roots, rather than move into this or that neighborhood in the USA because they had enough money to.

In as short as possible that is all America is. It is a nation of settler-colonists that attracts new colonists from all over the world motivated by the prospects of more wealth than if they didn't immigrate here. There is nothing noble about it, there was never was and there never will be. America has hundreds of military bases around the world to make sure its settler colonists never have to consume as little as the rest of the world, it is called gunboat diplomacy:
Use It and Lose It: The Outsize Effect of U.S. Consumption on the Environment

... “With less than 5 percent of world population, the U.S. uses one-third of the world’s paper, a quarter of the world’s oil, 23 percent of the coal, 27 percent of the aluminum, and 19 percent of the copper,” he reports. “Our per capita use of energy, metals, minerals, forest products, fish, grains, meat, and even fresh water dwarfs that of people living in the developing world.”

He adds that the U.S. ranks highest in most consumer categories by a considerable margin, even among industrial nations. To wit, American fossil fuel consumption is double that of the average resident of Great Britain and two and a half times that of the average Japanese.
Meanwhile, Americans account for only five percent of the world’s population but create half of the globe’s solid waste.

...
Even the citizens of other centuries long blood sucking imperial powers like the UK or Japan, pale in comparison to our over-sized consumption.
 
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K

Kim Chee

I deleted myself
America was founded by people who wanted freedom? Lol! Your political views are so naive and your historical knowledge is so inadequate, I don't know where to begin.
You have begun and you know not of what you speak.
In the meantime, if you can kindly remain on topic while commenting on my threads, I might actually give a shit about what you have to say.

This thread asks the following question:
I'm curious if there are any Americans here. Perhaps you can share your idea of what makes an American.
 

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