Why I love this country
Ok, this isn’t exactly softball, but tonight I feel compelled to write on this topic. There are a great many reasons I sincerely, deeply love the United States of America, but I heard a couple of stories today that I just have to share. Both have to do with the wake of the bombings at the Boston Marathon.
The first is one of those things that is kind of goofy, really, but deeply American. I heard that at Major League Baseball parks all over the country last night, the stadiums played, and the fans sang along to, Sweet Caroline by Neil Diamond. That is the signature song at Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox. The significance of the song, I think, is that it was written about Caroline Kennedy.
The first place that was mentioned as singing the song was Yankee Stadium in New York. Now, if you’re not familiar with it, Yankees and Red Sox fans hate each others’ teams with a passion. They say awful, horrible things to the visitors, and fans get into fistfights all the time. The rivalry was alluded to in the Ocean’s Twelve movie, where George Clooney and another character (Scott Caan, I think) fake getting into a fight on a train as a distraction to switch out two bags.
It’s definitely an interesting way to show support. But it shows the spirit of this country. As I write this we don’t know who did it, but baseball fans all over the country sang the song to show support for their fellow Americans in Boston, and to show that America’s spirit is not going to be broken or even damaged by an act of terror.
This is what we do as a country. Sure, we may fight amongst ourselves, but when things look bad we close ranks and support each other. My feeling is a lot of that is due to the fact that most Americans aren’t native to this land. We either chose to be here, or we chose to stay here. We are mutts (as they say in Stripes), and we believe in equality. And when you believe in equality, well, hurt one of us and you hurt us all. America’s colors are red, white and blue, and they never run. We are proud of who we are, and we will take on all comers.
The other event was a video of Boston Bruins fans singing the National Anthem at a game against the Buffalo Sabres. On a night when people could have stayed home, or cowered in fear, the arena was packed and those in attendance sang the Star Spangled Banner so loudly they drowned out Rene Rancourt singing over the PA system.
Yes, we can seem loud, obnoxious and pushy to the rest of the world. Yes, we have our internal differences. But in the end, you can’t divide us by attacking us. Come after us and we will stand united.
Tonight I am extra proud to be an American.