Who Decides What Makes Up A 'Real American'

 The other day, my wife called attention to a post by someone she had known since she was a child. The person in question had been a friend of her mother's. The post went something like this: 'You Liberal garbage who make remarks about the Bush family better watch out. Don't do it around real Americans!' 
  First of all, with all due respect to this woman, who are you to judge who a 'Real American' is? Secondly, who are you to call any citizen who has a different political viewpoint than you 'Garbage?' 
  In an effort to become a better human, even at my advanced age, I have been making a concerted effort not to let anger overcome me. Anger hurts the angry person much more than it does the focus of the anger. That person, or thing, is usually either oblivious or immune to your anger. However, this post by this woman really makes my blood boil. This seems to be the attitude of many people, on both sides of the political discussion, and this hurts me to my soul. 
  I think of all those who have given their all for this country because they believed in the principles that it was founded on. I don't recall anyone asking what side of the political spectrum that they sided with. I have lost several friends to war and, for the life of me, I can't recall ever asking what political party that they identified with. I don't remember anyone mentioning that "He was a life long Republican" or "He was a life long Democrat." I don't recall anyone ever calling any one of those who gave their lives 'Liberal Garbage!' I don't recall anyone saying "He was a Right Wing nut job!" Do you know why? Because they were just 'Americans,' plain and simple. They don't ask you what your political party is when you enlist. They don't ask you, when they are training you in boot camp, what you think of politics. If I recall correctly, the only thing that they taught us in boot camp was that we had to respect the chain of command, which started with the President, and all of those between your lowly enlisted behind and the Commander In Chief.
  I would ask this woman, who wraps herself in the Alt-Right part of the flag, Where the hell were you when my Progressive behind volunteered to serve this great country as a United States Marine? Where were you, when I flew to Okinawa and then on to Danang, Vietnam, in your name... in the name of every citizen of the United States? Where were you, my righteous friend, when I flew to Japan with a flight that also had many of my severely wounded brothers? Did you think, at the time, that they asked any one of those men, broken of body but not spirit, what damned political party that they belonged to? Do you think that this was even a consideration in the mind of the man (or woman) who wounded them?
  Finally, where the hell were you when we all came back? Were you there to welcome us home? Did you ever think, at the time, to reach out to some of these men and women who returned from that war, or any war? Or did you turn your head, when you saw one of the many who suffer from PTSD? 
  You, and people like you, make me forget for a moment what I am trying to do, and what I am trying to attain. Your anger and hatred directed at your fellow Citizens.... Yes, I said FELLOW CITIZENS, is despicable and it makes me sick and angry. You, who never sacrificed one second of your time to give anything up for your country, have every right to say whatever hateful thing that you want, and it's PROGRESSIVE GARBAGE like myself, and so many others, along with our brothers in arms who are on the right, who have sacrificed years of our lives, and put ourselves in harms way, in order to protect your right to free speech, no matter how hateful it is.
  So, continue your rants. Continue to spew forth all the hate and intolerance that you have in your black soul; we Progressive Garbage, and those on the right, will continue to strenuously protect your right to continue.
  I apologize to all of my friends on both sides of the political arena for getting angry. I do not wish to do so; but there is just so much even a peace-loving soul like myself can tolerate.

 As always, I wish you all Peace, Love, and Tranquility, and I urge to be kind to everyone that you come in contact with. We can make this world a better place if we really work together in harmony.
September 22, 2016
 John Zaffino Kent Lakes, New York

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