I do consider myself a kind of patriot. For Germany, for Europe, in a sense, as an American, as well. I was reminded of this fact on the subway train on my way from work to the train station. How so? There were a few young people close by, and I was listening in. I can’t help it. I have to do it. They were talking about insubstantial stuff. About some actor who they thought was gay, because he was the gay guy on some tv show. He had to be gay, because only gays can behave that way. Then they reconsidered. But instead of saying that a good actor could behave gay or straight if he was asked to, they said something like “well, Americans; you know”…
I don’t know if they noticed me flinching. I was tempted to ask him what exactly he meant by that. I remember hitting people for lesser insults to my patriotic feelings. Of course, I was younger when I did that, and often drunk as (h-)well. I might have told you that I used to have quite a temper. Age and wisdom have tempered me, but I realize I am still very proud of my national identities. I don’t particularly care when I hear insults against other nations. I don’t think it’s o.k, but i don’t get riled up.
Also, the GWB jr administration hasn’t diminished my patriotic feelings. He was an imbecile, in many people’s opinion. Ronald Reagan wasn’t the best President of the USA, either. Who really was the best is hard, if not impossible to determine, but I’m quite sure those two are not running for that title. Well, guess what: Adolf Hitler doesn’t make my list of favorite Chancellors of Germany, but I still love this country. Well, technically, he was chancellor of the Weimar Republic before he formed the Reich, but potatoes, potatoes… you get my point and I digress.
Anyway, I was (am) on the way to see my girl for the weekend, and I have found better, less destructive and more creative methods, to express my patriotic feelings.
Also, I am not comparing GWB jr/Reagan with Adolf Hitler. It just goes to show that you can love something that has utterly shaming aspects.