Archive for May, 2010

What Makes America Great

May 31, 2010

Heading home the other day, I spied a man reaching his arm out from the silver SUV he was driving to give the finger. Nothing unusual, this is New England, and traffic offensives are pointed out this way.  But he held it there, outstretched, while the streams of cars moved right along. That’s when I realize he is flipping off an entire mosque and the school attached to it.


Then my mind was simultaneously assaulted by these three thoughts: “Douche bag,” “That was fucking helpful” and “Is that somebody in his backseat????”

I can almost get aside him at the next lights and there I spy a child in a booster seat. Double WTF, What a COMPLETE douche bag! In front of his kid!!!

I wonder how he would feel if someone drove past his kid’s school, flipping it and his kid off? Would he chase them down? Would he throw rocks? I’m guessing probably not – only because he made his own opinion known from the protection of two tons of rolling Toyota 4Runner. Does he think that somebody who saw his act from the school or the mosque would come to his version of their senses? (Damn – Thanks guy who flipped me off. Now I realize I shall discard Mohammed and adopt Jesus as my Lord and Savior. Hugs for all!)

And then I thought about what he was driving – a Toyota.

Toyota, the Japanese company that dethroned our own Big Three as the world’s largest automaker, handed us a major economic defeat. Remember Japan was the country that gave us the Rape of Nanking, Pearl Harbor and the Baatan Death March. This guy is giving the finger to Muslims from a vehicle made by the people responsible for the deaths of over 100,000 Americans.

That’s when I realized there is hope in this scene.

It occurred to me that the most precious characteristic we Americans have is the ability to forget, not forgive and forget, just forget. Attention deficit is not our problem; it is our national gift. Factions living on the Balkans have battled each other for a thousand years; the conflicts in the Middle East go back before the Romans and Egyptians. Cross an American and we might hate you for a generation or two, but that’s about it. This Memorial Day we must remember those who gave their lives in service to our country, but forgetting the hatred and moving on is what makes Americans great. I bet the kid in the back seat didn’t even know what his dad was doing.