Recently, much has been made about pride - or the lack of it or the acute acquisition of it by a certain lady who wants to be first by next January.
Born between the Fall of the Wall and the Fall of the Towers - pride was something only reserved for self - never shared or recog'd for others.
History was something to daydream through in class or ancient smelly books with funky photos to avoid.
History was boring. Pilgrims. Yankees. Rebels. Wheee. So what?
Then one late summer day, sitting on the floor in front of the TV, breakfasting on Cap'n Crunch Berries history came alive and became very personal.
So did pride.
Pride that Ladder 8 rushed into burning buildings to save lives - and laid down their own.
Pride that Flight 93 was the first counterattack - a do and die effort to save lives.
Pride that Americans killed Al Qaeda's #2 on the very first day of retaliation.
Pride that only America could prevail in the Afghanistani 'graveyard of empires' - in only three weeks.
Pride that Pat Tilman gave up everything to literally lay his life on Freedom's Altar.
Pride that America blew off the Geneva Convention - instead of shooting captured Taliban and Al Qaeda combatants (in civilian clothes - out of uniform to the nth - no less) on the battlefield.
And that's only in the first 90 days after 911 - a personal hook up with history that has took up every since.
Dr Donald Douglas in SoCali teaches
"Not only that, of all the great Western democracies, the United States hasAnd all of Great Satan's children and fans worldwide - truly - should be audaciously proud of that.
made the most radical committment toward the guarantees of full equality under
the law and the pursuit of the unimpeachable human dignity in the history of
Have we always lived up to our ideals? Of course not. Thomas Jefferson
himself embodies the contrast of our nation's lofty ideals and our ignominious
crimes of injustice.
But we have overcome.
From Abraham Lincoln to George W. Bush, the march of American
democratization - while not always swift - has been unrelenting."