Tuesday, August 29, 2006

I am an American

Or should I say ich bin more American than JFK claimed he was a Berliner. Without diminishing my love for my birth country I cannot erase the fact that half of my "conscious life" (ie whenever I started remembering things) has been spent in the US. My 16 year marriage occurred totally in the US. My four daughters were born in the US. I have paid and continue to pay my dues (mostly taxes but this should include the intolerance and prejudice that I have had to put up with). I have enough knowledge in American Civics and History I can teach an advanced course in College. I can speak fluently an "accentless variety of Oklahoma-English". I have never shied from contributing to the various communities I lived in. I have always been prepared to defend the country of my four daughter's birth.

So just because I wasn't born in the US and I can never renounce my beloved Philippines should not mean I am less of an American. For if being an American means being more generous and tolerant and civic-minded and patriotic then by all means I am proud to be an American. To those who don't agree, you can always exercise the option of trying to bite me.

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