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An American Story

July 4, 2012 by  

An American Story

On a hot June afternoon in 1998 in Spokane, Wash., I raised my right hand and pledged my allegiance to the flag and to the United States of America.

Today, I have that pledge framed and hanging on my office wall. It reads in part:

I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic…

I felt a lot of emotions that day. I had become a citizen of the greatest Nation on Earth. Yet in some ways I didn’t feel much different, no doubt because of my paternal roots.

I remember leaving my small country school to attend the biggest high school in Calgary four decades ago. The kids teased me with words like “Yankee.” I never disputed what they thought were catcalls and proudly embraced the fact they believed I was an American.

I remember the dinnertime stories my father would tell about his father Amil and his grandfather, Gustov, a bearded German who spoke English with a harsh accent.

Amil was all of 9 and had just become a naturalized citizen a few weeks before he and his father embarked on one of the greatest American adventures ever: the Oklahoma land rush of 1889.

Those Unassigned Lands were considered some of the best unoccupied public land in the United States. The Indian Appropriations Act for 1890 was passed and signed into law with an amendment by Representative William Springer (D-Ill.). The Springer Amendment authorized the President to open Unassigned Lands for settlement. Because of the Homestead Act of 1862, signed by President Abraham Lincoln, legal settlers could claim lots up to 160 acres of surveyed, unclaimed public domain. If the settler lived on the land for five years, improved it and paid claim registration fees, he could receive the title to the land.

My American heritage is hardly blue-blooded; but as much as any group, the people of that time put down stakes for a Nation that would dominate the world in just 50 years.

Stubborn Men And Beasts

An estimated 50,000 people lined up for their share of the land. The race began at high noon on April 22, 1889, when starting signals were given at the points of entry.

Gustov and Amil Myers were among the settlers in a hastily built wagon box that was pulled by an aged gelding and a mean mule.

Everything they owned was in that wood-and-iron wagon, and everything they dreamed lay in front of them.

It was a dash the moment the gunshot echoed across the prairie. Gustov’s mixed-team raced the first half mile. The horse was breathing hard and the mule would not run any farther than she had to.

Those behind were on bicycles or on foot. My grandfather remembered one man carrying four wooden stakes tied to his belt loops, but no hammer. Those ahead were disappearing on the horizon; the richest land would be theirs.

Gustov and Amil were under a 72-hour-deadline to stake their claim; they made it in less than half that time. The family would go on to farm and ranch off this land and would be part of the greatest population expansion ever.

A decade later, Amil was a young man. He staked another claim, this one on the rich homestead land offered in Southern Alberta by the Canadian government. He and my grandmother went on to have three children, survive the Great Depression and expand their land from 160 acres to more than 1,000 acres.

The Leftover Legacy

I marvel at the things my grandfather and father did. My dad was born into a 12-by-12 foot shack on the cold Canadian prairie 100 years ago. At age 6, he rode a pony eight miles to school and back. My uncle, Amil’s youngest son, now age 84, sold the final quarter section of the homestead last month.

The descendants of the man who as a boy was part of the Oklahoma land run have gone on to be lawyers, dentists, teachers and writers. Whatever our accomplishments, they pale in comparison to those of our ancestors who pioneered North America.

I can recall the asthma attacks I had as a child. May dad would say that if I were of his generation, I would not be alive. It was true. Perhaps because the challenges we once faced no longer exist, there is a great deal that we Americans no longer dare.

There is a lesson in this as we pick the next President of the United States. Many of you share my feelings of despair that our Presidents are not the quality of men that they once were. But then again, are we? Let us hope that fortitude is within us as we celebrate this Fourth of July.

Yours in good times and bad,

–John Myers
Editor, Myers’ Energy & Gold Report

John Myers

is editor of Myers’ Energy and Gold Report. The son of C.V. Myers, the original publisher of Oilweek Magazine, John has worked with two of the world’s largest investment publishers, Phillips and Agora. He was the original editor for Outstanding Investments and has more than 20 years experience as an investment writer. John is a graduate of the University of Calgary. He has worked for Prudential Securities in Spokane, Wash., as a registered investment advisor. His office location in Calgary, Alberta, is just minutes away from the headquarters of some of the biggest players in today’s energy markets. This gives him personal access to everyone from oil CEOs to roughnecks, where he learns secrets from oil insiders he passes on to his subscribers. Plus, during his years in Spokane he cultivated a network of relationships with mining insiders in Idaho, Oregon and Washington.

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  • Michael J.

    Dear Mr. Myers,
    A most uplifting account of pioneer spirit. The gravel in our gut owes homage to the sacrifices made by our ancestors. Those things plus our once welcomed voice in the building of our nation makes us unique and exceptional. A feeling of invincibility never to be enjoyed by the serfs imprisoned in socialist societies who go along to get along like caged animals, allways with an eye on an escape route.

    God Bless The United States of America on this celebrated day of her independence.

  • GiveMeLiberty

    A proud family story Mr. Meyers and terrific tale of our nations early grit and determination. Our fabric and condition has certainly changed. I speak of it often. It was that grit and determination, no doubt, that evolved to create the greatest nation. But with that gone, I wonder what the future holds. I strive to be optimistic but with no grit and determination and no national leadership advocating greatness, we may well be devolving. Always a silver lining, maybe that’s what is necessary to get it all back! Although getting there won’t be easy but then again, under those circumstances, NOTHING was.

    I personally don’t advocate a change back to those early days in terms of condition but we do need to rekindle that early spirit. I often wonder, who among us today would venture out to new frontiers under such circumstances, such as Mr. Meyers ancestors? Very few. And if any did, they would quickly return once they understood they had no cell service, or no electricity, or nobody to help with a broken wagon axle. Self probably included!

    Yes, God Bless America, of course but unless we quickly make some fundamental changes, that phrase too may become history!

    “Small, Limited Government (with a STRONG Defense) + Individual & Fiscal Responsibility + Free Markets = TRUE LIBERTY”

    • Michael J.

      GiveMeLiberty said,
      “I often wonder, who among us today would venture out to new frontiers under such circumstances”

      It may well be that the Obama regimes only lasting legacy is his inadvertent kindling of the American Pioneer Spirit. Many like myself, are now reinvesting in the art of self reliance and self sustainability in remote areas.

      • Old Henry


        That is good. Very good. However, the communist foreign-national Kenyan and his more than willing accomplices in Congress have and are putting into place the means to hunt you down and “bring you to justice.”

        And do not delude yourselves into thinkng Romneycain will do any different. He is bought and paid for. And he is also a non-Christian as well.

      • mac

        Let us pray that is the only lasting outcome.

    • Old Henry


      I fear you are correct. We have indeed lost the pooneer spirit.

      I see that God Bless America a lot and shake my head. We must remember, God WILL NOT bless America unless America Blesses God first.

      That is very unlikely as we have allowed this great nation to be infiltrated / over-run with communists througout the entire government.

  • Delores Smith

    Mr. John Myers,
    Thank you for the outstanding article. Happy Fourth of July. Take care.
    Delores Smith

  • Wayne

    These days, I think many more people than we believe cherish family stories like these and want the USA to remain free. The problem, these people are not news worthy to the liberal press. We have people who own and run media companies that want to destroy America. So goes the challenge of free speech. I don’t know what T Jefferson, or G Washington, or J Adams would say to all of this, but I don’t think it would be good.

    • brett

      i’d agree, that aussie rupert murdoch is destroying this country.

  • Deerinwater

    Good write John Myer, heart felt.

    It’s funny how the passage of time installs a certain amount of gloss and glamour to the hardest of times.

    In some ways it reminds me of the Oklahoma “Sooners” in replay.

    It’s not intended for life to be easy it seems. Every generation has it’s own trials and tribulations. We rise to the challenge or we don’t.

    It’s wise to pick your battles as the war is unending.

    It was not until her funeral that I discovered my father’s mother left behind 267 descendants.

    I remember her as a tiny 4ft 11” bend over and humpback little granny with a scratchy voice that like to put black pepper on everything she cooked and let me help her snap beans and churn butter on the back porch.

    267 descendants is a personal victory of it’s own.

    The battle we fight today is a noble one, I just don’t approve of the many way in which it is being fought, with relabeling and disinformation, with tearing opposition down to elevate ourselves, left to select the best of poor choices.

  • Homer

    You KNOW: I come from an English/German ancestry that ranges from the Va settlement in the original settlement. I am born and raised in Indiana and i have a CERTIFIED/Raised letter B/cert. I served my country for 22 years in the armed forces and yet, as of this time, I am ashamed of this nation. I am NOT ashamed of it’s people, i am ashamed w/an utter shame of those who are supposed to be defending this nation. I.e. the politicians! they make and pass laws that they DO NOT abide by! i.e. the health care and tax laws, Social sec. etc They THINK they are above the law! They have no scrupples and no class! They are to serve and yet all they do is serve themselves and their lust for “power. control and Money” I am damned ashamed of the man who has NO shown B/C and who has been proven to be fraudulant, and Illegal: a man who is a Muslim and a communist and who was NOT raised in this country! YES, I am ashamed of this man, He never served in any capacity as the military or even the boy scouts! He seeks to destroy us through Homosexuals and taxes and debt and thru his errant policy and giving and selling this nation and millions of us down the tubes! THIS MAN couldn’t care less about anyone except his own self!! YES, I am ashmaed of him and ALLLLLLLL who will not step forward and do what they swore on a bible in front of God and men to uphold in the office they possess! ASHAMED TO have these men/women in this capacity and ashamed to call them U.S.Citizens!!

    • Nancy in Nebraska

      I agree with you in the fact that I too, am ashamed of our government. They have become the tyrant that was the king of England. Today, I received an e mail from my congressman concerning The Declaration of Independence. I thought to myself, “did you even READ it”? We are today, in the same position our forefathers were in. Their grievances are now our grievances. They fought for the rights that we gave away. They warned us not to allow this but we didn’t heed their warning! The Declaration of Independence has more relevance today than at any other time. People need to read it! You will be amazed that the very things they fought against, we are now putting up with from our government! We need to take back our rights! Read it!
      This day is MORE than the 4th of July. It IS our INDEPENDENCE DAY! It is about far more than fireworks and hot dogs and apple pie. I recommend that everyone print out a copy of The Declaration of Independence and READ it out loud at your family get togethers. We all need to be reminded of what our founding fathers fought for.

    • AZ-Ike

      Amen, Homer.

      We have seen with perfect clarity that not one elected Representative or Senator (or the majority of appointed judicial officers of the court) will support the Declaration of Independence OR the Constitution as they were written and intended for the People–who are the sovereign authority in this country.

      Those who want to restore this country to the greatness it had and was given by God’s Divine Profidence must stop re-electing the corrupt, career politicians who have rejected the principles of republican/representative/limited government and who have led us to the brink of complete disaster.

      God Bless,

  • Dwight Mann

    Wow! A tasty slice of American history. The goals are so much different now, but that spirit still lives in every citizen, of the greatest nation to ever grace the earth.
    Our government has taken a wrong turn and it needs to be reined in like now.
    Trying times have come upon us, but we will rise up as an eagle, and soar towards better times.
    End the UN, Globalist, NWO, Banksters, tyrannical Agenda 21 plan. It is upon us as we speak, and it is the root cause of our problems. . .
    Get the UN out of the US, and the US out of the UN!

    • Nancy in Nebraska

      I agree with everything you said except that, apathy is the root cause of all of our problems. We allowed this to happen because we weren’t paying attention. We allowed ourselves to believe that our representatives were representing us, that they had our best interests at heart. HAH! We allowed ourselves to believe that they knew better than we did. It allowed us to sit back and watch tv instead of taking the trouble to learn what was really going on. I hope that on this Independence Day people will recognize that we can no longer sit back and let these people in government destroy this great nation. People need to wake up.

      • mac

        Nancy, You are 100% right on.

    • Old Henry


      Aren’t Eagles on the endangered species list?

      • Karolyn

        They have not been on the endangered list for some years now.

  • http://smith thomas

    this too, is a American story, as we reflect on how far America has come and how far America has to go to totally fulfill the promise

    What, to the American slave, is your 4th of July? I answer; a day that reveals to him, more than all other days in the year, the gross injustice and cruelty to which he is the constant victim. To him, your celebration is a sham; your boasted liberty, an unholy license; your national greatness, swelling vanity; your sound of rejoicing are empty and heartless; your denunciation of tyrants brass fronted impudence; your shout of liberty and equality, hollow mockery; your prayers and hymns, your sermons and thanks-givings, with all your religious parade and solemnity, are to him, mere bombast, fraud, deception, impiety, and hypocrisy — a thin veil to cover up crimes which would disgrace a nation of savages. There is not a nation on the earth guilty of practices more shocking and bloody than are the people of the United States, at this very hour.

    • Nadzieja Batki

      Lots and lots of verbiage that says nothing of substance. You don’t want to see the people of this country who Work, and Pray, and Rejoice, and Mourn. Your image is warped and slanted by what is in your own warped well which is your heart. You have no concept that you are supposed to love the good and avoid evil. Possibly you substituted one for the other or you have no idea how to make the distinction.

    • Sirian

      If your disgust is so overwhelming then why are you still here? You have the freedom to leave if you like. Is that, in and of itself, not worthy of more than has been explicitly shown by perhaps your favorites? If you so choose, relinquish your citizenship. No one will prevent you from doing so. Take a good long look at yourself – you may need more help than any government can provide.

    • Robert Aiken

      Ah, Thomas, your eyes are closed to reality. Where do you find the slaves in America today? Slavery still exists in the middle east, Africa, Asia; but that great Republican President Lincoln abolished the practice in America over 150 years ago. Since then, in incremental steps and thanks again to the Republicans, the plight of the Black race in this country has steadily improved. Today, even though they are called “Uncle Toms; Oreos; etc.”, the ranks of Black conservatives are growing. I too adopted this great nation, leaving Canada at the age of 22, becoming naturalized while serving in the armed forces for 23 years, and fighting to defend her and all the rights that we enjoy that other countries can only envy. Stop seeing yourself as a victim, read some of the writings of Thomas Sowell, Walter Williams, and become educated in the realities of the world in which you live.

      • brett

        bob at 9:47am seems to think that slavery currently exists.

      • GiveMeLiberty

        Awesome response but go easy with the adjective “Great” in front of Lincoln! Significant, intelligent and strong, yes, but great, ah I can counter that all day.

    • cawmun cents

      I defy you to show a more philanthropical nation you brazen hussy.-CC.

    • Jay

      thomas, that could be said about all, countries and cultures. I couldn’t help but notice, however, that you took great care in avoiding the mention of anything good America has done. How come? Were you worried that by doing so, you would accused of submitting a un-biased and balanced comment?

    • http://PersonalLibertyDigest Sharon Taylor

      It’s impossible to move forward when you consistently look back. Change your outlook and you will change your life. Self pity turns other OFF.

    • GiveMeLiberty

      thomas, I can empasize slightly, very slightly, how a ONCE oppressed people or tribe might feel anger toward the occupier or self-imposed superior people. HOWEVER, not today! Get over this crap. If it were NOT for the slave trade, Africans would be an EXTREMELY small minority on the North American continent. I would submit, most AMERICANS of African descent would prefer to live here than there! Sorry, simple fact of life. Yes, slavery WAS a stain on our national history but one that spurred GREAT things.

      Thanks to slavery, we experienced the Civil War. Without the Civil War, our current place in history might not be so glorified. The true industrial revolution might have been delayed for decades. If that’s accurate, the modern amenities we enjoy today might be very different. Of course, that would have also delayed the PROGRESSIVE moment and that would have been a good thing!

      Study history, understand ‘crap happened’ for bad and good reasons for thousands of years. Be proud of your ancestors for enduring such harsh circumstances but be equally proud of this GREAT nation, most specifically the Constitution, that allows you to be anything or anyone you so desire (at least it used to)!

      God Bless America and tyranny in all forms be damned!

    • Curt

      Can’t go one day without dragging racism into something? You sound like Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton.

      • Jay

        Clearly thomas has “A Dream”. Unbeknownst to him, he’s having it in a time-warp.

  • Mike Townsend

    I note the left thinks they have a victory with the health care ruling. Now that we KNOW it is a tax. In particular a tax on the middle class. I am getting more and more convinced we will see a new President next year.

    • CZ52

      I believe it was
      Allan West that proposed requiring everyone to purchase a semi-suto handgun for pewrsonal defence and taxing them if they don’t in response to the ruling.

      • Nadzieja Batki

        What is wrong with what Alan West proposed? There is precedence going back to the beginnings of this country. The populace was fined if they did not have weapenry and ammo on hand for their own defense.

      • CZ52

        Did I say there was anything wrong with it Nadzieja Batki? I expressed no opinion of the idea at all I only reported that he made the statement. If you had bothered to read and comprehend any of my previous posts on gun control, firearms, and firearm ownership you would KNOW I support the right to own firearms with few or no limitations. You would also know the idea is something I would likely support (which I would if seriously proposed).

      • Nadzieja Batki

        My comment stands.
        This nation has a precedence of requiring that families have weapons and ammo for their defense and being fined if they didn’t.
        The answer is a no, there is nothing wrong with what Allan West is proposing.

      • CZ52

        Nadzieja, any precedence from the past is not the problem here. The problem is your assumption based on your saying “What is wrong with what Alan West proposed?” that I am somehow anti-gun or opposed to the statement by him. And just to be sure you understand as I said above I would support the idea if seriously proposed.

      • Jay

        There was also a law that required all citizentry to cultivate “Hemp”. Failure to do so resulted in a fine.

  • Wyatt

    A wonderful story for Fourth of July and it gives us all something to ponder . My own ancestors came to America for religious freedom in the 1640′s . They were my Mothers people and they settled and held fast to their Quaker beliefs .
    My Fathers people were here already , Native Americans of the fierce and mighty Iroquios nation , Mohawks from the region in NY State that bares their name . At the end of the Revolution , my Great Grand Father 6x’s removed could not return to America . He spent his remaining years in Ontario Provence , Canada and England as Joseph Brandt was a loyalist and had fought against the colonists .
    Ironically , my father flew with an RAF Eagle Squadron in WWII . Returning home at wars end he married my mother and added his blood line to that of the simple farmers of NJ . Many of us have similar histories . It matters not if they are long or short histories , we are Americans all .
    If we , as Americans wish to keep our rich and varied heritage intact as an American People , we should reflect upon our past and those who got us to where we are today . Hold their efforts and dreams as dearly as they did . We may be lesser men than our ancestors in some ways but we can be better in others . Our dream is the same as theirs . Liberty , it is the foundation of the American Spirit . Stand fast and oppose those who would take it or try to alter the bounds of that Liberty .

  • Henry David

    I had tears in my eyes while reading the story and the reply’s. I fear that this once great nation is just celebrating its retirement party. It seems that so many just want to collect a check from the government and have someone else do the work. Do we still have that spirit of our forefathers? There is a project in the Netherlands to build a permanent colony on Mars. One of the biggest complaints is, “People will go there and die.” Is this any different than the colonists who left their homes and crossed the oceans to settle in America or Australia? Once they set foot on that ship, they said good bye to their families and looked forward to “dieing” in some untamed wilderness. They also intended to do a lot of living before that happened. My father left his home and family in Germany at the age of 13. By the age of 16 he set foot in San Francisco and could not speak a word of English. He never really looked back. I regret that he never spent much time telling me stories of his youth or German culture, and language. He became a true American. My mothers mother came through Ellis Island as a teenager. She became a true American, also. My mothers father, on the other hand, could trace his family back to New England before the Revolution. I am ashamed of my fellow citizens who would gladly give up their freedoms for some perceived security. It was Benjamin Franklin who said this trade would result in losing both. I pray, God Bless the USA. May we come to our senses and remember the vision and faith of our fathers before it truly is too late.

  • Dean Barftlett

    My mother is a naturalized citizen my father was a GI she married she took the same oath
    as you did she now in her 80′s will not even vote. On the subject she said what difference does it make America and it’s citizens have in their own ignorant fashion decided to give up what so many in the world longed for and become what so many died to end.

  • Charlie

    What a great American story. Hard work pays off, half the country still believes in this ethic the other half has it’s hands out.

    • brett

      hard work used to pay, now we have trickle down. i don’t see how helping the unfortunate is construed as hand outs.

  • Bob

    When government becomes destructive of the ends for which it was cerated, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it and institute new government which shall seem to them most likely to affect their safety and happiness. (T.Jefferson)
    My ancesters did just that in 1861 but were attacked, invaded and untimatly forced at the point of a bayonet to rejoin the union they had voluntarily left to secure a better governmental arrangment.
    I have known no other government but one of occupation by a foriegn athority, to which I owe no allegience. Perhaps my childern or grand childern will someday know liberty instead of slavery visited upon us by a tyrant now hailed as a hero and savior. If the people of the South knew of their real history and heritage, perhaps they would finaly, at this late hour rise up and shake off the chains of tyrany.

    • brett

      funny how the homestead act did not pass until the southern democrats seceded from the union.

    • AZ-Ike

      This may be the truth as you see it, but it is not the truth according to the Constitution.

      Slavery was considered a State’s issue and the Constitution only addressed it by limiting the representation from those States that authorized slavery. (In fact, if a slave was truly considered ‘property’ by slave owners, those States should not have been able to ‘count any part of them’ toward federal representation–even counting them as 3/5ths of one free person in determining representation.) The only other provision referring to slavery is Article IV which states an escaped ‘slave’ could not be freed by another State and must be delivered up/returned upon Claim of the Party to whom Service/Labor may be due.

      The practice of slavery was not specifically mentioned within the Constitution until after the Civil War when the 13th Amendment prohibiting slavery was ratified December 6, 1965.

      However, the Constitution does, under Article I,Section 10, prohibit States from entering into any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation;…lay any Duty of Tonnage, keep Troops, or Ships of War in time of Peace, enter into any Agreement or Compact with another State, or with a foreign Power, or engage in War, unless actually invaded…. .

      It is true the Southern States were receiving a great deal of negative resistance to slavery from non-slave States in the North, but the federal government, istelf, did not act against the Southern States–even when they declared their secession–until they (the South) started the War.

      I know all of you Southerners will disagree with my analysis. My recent study of our nation’s founding and the writing of the Constitution, forming a new federal republic of united states (and in no way do I consider myself an expert,) indicates that 8 of the original 13 colonies believed slavery was against the Declaration ‘that all men are created equal’…and that a man could only by governed by his own consent. It is clear that to the Founders, protection from foreign takeover required all 13 colonies banding together for ‘protection’ and it was also clear that the Southern ‘slave’ States would not join the remaining 8 States if slavery was prohibited to them by the new Constitution and federal government. Instead of originally prohibiting slavery, as the 8 States would have preferred, they left it to the States to decide for themselves, hoping eventually slavery would end without overt action.

      In Abraham Lincoln’s First Inaugural Addresss, he made a clear case for the ‘preservation of the union’ and clearly stated he would not act against the Southern States for their Declaration of Secession, nor would he act against the issue of slavery. From the actions of the Southern States leading up to the ‘firing on Ft. Sumter,’ it seems the Southern States had already prepared, violating Article I, Section 10, to do everything necessary to preserve the institution of slavery, including fighting against a federal government that had no intention of acting against them or slavery.

      I have no intention of offending anyone with a strong affinity to the South and/or with an ongoing resentment of the events leading to and since the Civil War. I have never studied Civil War history and know there is much I don’t know or understand of that time. I am merely looking at the statements you have made based on my understanding of the Declaration and the Constitution. I am sorry if you do not support the Constitution as it was written and intended because I believe it will take a nation of committed People who absolutely WANT to restore a government that must adhere to the ‘consent of the governed’ and their ‘sovereign authority.’

      • Bob

        You have been reading the “Yankee” history books. Find out how many were killed in “firing on Fort Sumpter’, and why it was fired on. Find out who suspended Habius Corpus. Find out which part of the Nation supplied approximatly 80% of the taxes to the ‘federal government. Read the congressional discussions and debates for the 40 years prior to ‘Mr Lincolns war’ as the northerners called it.Who was not negotionating in good faith to end the occupation on South Carolina by federal troops in Fort Sumter. Who invaded who? Who’s women and childern were killed, maimed , raped, etc,etc

  • Steve L.

    You should be ashamed of yourself for believing stuff that is just wrong. Its independence day have a hot dog and get a life

    • Bob

      Ignorance must be bliss.
      I have a right to tell the truth as I see it, even on your independance day.

    • Otto

      “You should be ashamed of yourself for believing stuff that is just wrong. Its independence day have a hot dog and get a life”

      Dear Steve L.
      I am an immigrant from Czech Republic and have live on this continent for over 42 years now. Didn’t speak a word of English language when I arrived on June 4th in 1970, but ended up getting a 3.6 Grade Point Average in high school in 3 years. You see, the reason I accomplished that was because I was inspired! I loved being in America, away from the communist regime that infested my native homeland, and I knew deep inside my heart that this will be my home now, and I also realized that to survive I better learn the language first – and fast. So, I applied the tools I had at my disposition – my brain. It was hard work but I persevered and was successful.
      Your comment ( to Bob’s comment w 1861- the start of the ‘civil War’) wherein he refers to the ‘Civil War’ era and the subsequent atrocities committed by the Northern armies.
      You are implying that, a man you don’t know personally, is ignorant of the past ( Civil War era) and for which you publicly heap the charge and accusation of SHAME on his head!
      I say SHAME on you! Bob is correct when he wrote:
      “My ancest[o]rs did just that in 1861 but were attacked, invaded and u[l]timat[e]ly forced at the point of a bayonet to rejoin the union they had voluntarily left to secure a better governmental arrang[e]ment.

      I read a lot. I like all sorts of activities but I especially enjoy history. It gives me a glimpse into the minds of people that lived in the past. It reveals their thoughts and aspirations and intentions they had then. They are clues that help to reveal the true causes of the serious problems that are befalling our country,
      One of the truths I discovered about the past of this country was different from what I was taught in the government run school system. It concerns, what the current ‘victors’ in teach in schools, the so called ‘Civil War’. The southerners call it , by what I have learned to be the true description of that tragic and horrendous violation of the organic, and STILL, current laws – the Declaration of Independence, Articles of Confederation, the Northwest Ordinance, and the United States Constitution – the’ War of Northern Aggression’. And it was! The Northern states declared war on the South! ( Some claim it was South Carolina that attacked first. This is not true! South Carolina only took one action – it seceded first! which the proponents of the justification for the start of the military acts against the South would like to label as an ‘aggression’)
      The other FACT I discovered about the so called ‘Civil War’ was that is was not about slavery! Slavery issue was only a TOOL of the Northern aggressors – comprised of the greedy and covetous industrialists, bankers and power-hungry and psychopathic politicians who wanted the South to conform to THEIR wishes. Sure slavery is WRONG and the Southern states were wrong to keep human beings in chains against their will and be forced to work for the master, but the northern states had other means to settle the slavery issue. Declaring war was against all that the Constitution forbade!

      If you will just read beyond the diatribe spewed out in the institutes called schools by the people who benefit from the lies being told and the subsequent and inevitable outcome of spreading such half truths and outright lies – the control of ignorant masses! Total enslavement of unwitting people through the age-old manipulative move – keep them from learning the truth. Keep them from thinking for themselves. Do not let them read and write. Look around you today! The pathetic, and self-serving efforts of the he National Association of State Boards of Education to ‘throw-good-money-after-bad ploy to ‘solve the education crisis’ is a ruse. All they want is more money to keep their cushy jobs and pensions. To hell with the children. They do NOT care about them.
      They are all communists!

      Loved the immigrant story!. They sure don’t make people like that anymore!

  • Ric

    Thank you Mr. Myers for sharing some of your family history. This should be an inspiration to all of us as to what it means to be an american.

  • brett

    as proud as i’m to be an american, i can’t help but point out how this story over shadows a very sad footnote in human history. it could be said that the homestead act may not have transgressed into the indian appropriation acts without the application of the indian removal act of 1830 which relocated indians ( trail of tears ) to parts of kansas.

    • JimH

      brett, There are sad footnotes in history world wide. If you can find a better place on this whole planet to live, I invite you to go there. Then you can have your tale to tell.
      I just don’t think, on a day of celebration, you have to obligate yourself to point out the negetive.
      Every body have a Happy Independence day. ( even you brett)(it’s OK, despite footnotes)

      • brett

        very true which is why i stated human not american history. and i very happy to live in a country that believes in free speech, especially if it enlightens the truth.

  • Rich

    You should get down off you cross or off your soap box now John.

    I could tell of my Mother who braved the on slot of German Unmanned buzz booms that leveled her neighbors homes while she and My Grand Mother hid in the coal shoot of their home in England and how some way she survived to meet a US Air Force supply Sargent only to marry and return with him to Florida leaving her entire family behind.

    That little English girl, agents great odds, stayed married to as said “till death due you part”, over 50 years. She also, after arriving in this Country stepped up and Denounced the Queen and became a Naturalized Citizen of the United States of America (not North America) She also, at the same time became a Citizen of the State of Florida without which she could not become a citizen of the United States of America.

    But then everyone has a story !!! This is a sad 4th of July. Maybe next 4th of July wehave something to Celebrate?

    • John Myers

      Dear Rich,
      Yes that is a great story about your mother. Thanks for sharing it.
      John Myers.

  • boyscout

    A rollicking story of purest patriotism that continues to overlook the seedier aspects of our nation’s modus operandi of growth – a type of eminent domain. Curiously, this land was occupied before the arrival of the Mayflower or of Vespucci. Not only did we bring slaves with us but we confiscated the continent through a systematic genocide of its native inhabitants. All was accomplished while a steady stream of oppressed malcontents from around the globe poured in and readily (even if superficially) accepted our doctrines. Expansion was inevitable.

    Agriculture gave way to industry, slavery was abolished, and with a righteous religious right even through constant warfare, population soared as the bounty of our resources dwindled. We have a history of theft, wasteful consumption, and unbridled population growth. This is what many seem to refer to when they call our nation “great.”

    Yet, true greatness is within our grasp. If we focus on sustainability in the population / resources equation, and on the most relevant considerations of our founding fathers. And, although these foresighted men did not always agree with one another, while it existed the check and balance system served to correct the outlandish . I see no two party candidate willing to return to the original precepts that actually worked.

    • brett

      unfortunately, those here have been trained to see this greatness you wish to grasp as agenda 21. the whole reason why checks and balances doesn’t work is because the constitution was designed on democratic principles of promoting the common good ( not majority rule ). instead, what we have is a party system, which is exactly what washington forewarned of in his farewell address.

  • http://coast chuck


  • brett

    i believe that we are all god’s children, equally created, with equal rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, regardless of race, religion, creed, gender, sexual orientation, and nationality, and i believe in the promotion of the general welfare to all. everyone have a safe and happy holiday.

  • Mirage

    A rich family history MYERS … good story, you’re a lucky guy to know so much about your family.
    Oklahoma; oil country and “Red” politics is part of your DNA, so no surprise your here, regurgitating what you grew up with, and nothing more.

    I’m guessing you have dual citizenship for both your native Canada, and America, and that with the benefits afforded by the former, you’re double dipping and a citizen of BOTH?
    If not, my apologies.

    Regarding our presidents not being of the same quality of individuals as the great ones, i.e. T. Roosevelt, Lincoln, etc. , there is NO WAY THEY COULD BE.
    With the internet, camera phones, 24/7 media news cycle …. FREEDOM TO PRIVACY IS DEAD.
    If the MOUNT RUSHMORE CREW were around today in our times of media/internet invasion 24/7, they too would be lambasted like today’s leaders, for their various affairs, both private and political etc. Which brings up the point that America cannot be the same country as it was in 1776; everything is different, and to expect the same policies of that nacent nation 200+ years ago, to remain unchanged while everything else has changed, is weak, defective thinking.
    America the greatest nation on earth?
    For what?
    If for oligarchical (sp) type thinking, I whole heartedly agree.
    However, with a burgeoning population of 50 million plus Americans unable to keep up with health care costs, America being the Greatest Country is nothing more than nationalistic propaganda – a joke, that all 2 1/2 political parties are doing their best to preserve.

    • Bob

      USA does not allow dual citizenship. Lincoln was a queer, and T.Roosevelt a big government Progressive.

    • Richie

      The commies lost. Why not come on board and join the team for the win?

  • Raymond Baldwin

    It disgusts me to read a comment which says in effect “Shut up and leave this country”, simply because one may have a differing viewpoint. It is only by expressing and discussing our views that we can arrive at reasonable conclusions. People should think long and hard about what and why they believe a matter. Having done that, they should propose their viewpoints calmly and cogently, respecting the right of a fellow citizen to speak his mind, while further realizing that life’s experiences and society has caused that other person to take that stand.

  • Nieman-Detroit PS grad back when we could read our diploma

    Nadzieja, Sirian et al: you missed the point! thos is doubtless, like the MAJORITY of us, a non-negroid, non-Muslim male, probably born post-1964 Negro-rights Act, and therefore NOT an endangered species lucky enough to be born negro, protected from any slight in the activities of daily living the majority suffer: ergo thos, being non-Negroid, is availed of NONE of the hand-out, set-aside and race quota benefit/largess/perks earmarked for the unqualified, which we American Indians, Asians, Australoid, Caucasian and Veddoids are denied by being born the wrong race! IOW he opposes the status quo where any quota-filler who can breathe has the world by the tail!

  • Richie

    No matter how bad it gets, when you think you can’t even sing the star spangled banner or listen to another ridiculous senate hearing that you could be stuck living in Europe! Cheer up and drink a Budweiser.

    • The Christian American

      In this day and age, amongst a lot of things I think reading “The War Prayer” would help.

  • Old Henry

    Mr. Myers:

    That is a neat “pledge” you took back in 1998. We should really look into having our presidents, congressmen / women and Supreme Court justices make a pledge like that.

    Thank you for sharing some of your family hisotry. It was interesting. And you are correct about the hardships and sacrefices they endured. I am a fan of Louis L’Amour and listen to his books on audio CD at every oportunity. The stories really make me realize how “sisified” we as a country have become.

    Too hot outside? Go inside and turn on the A/C. All dirty and sweaty? Go jump in the shower. Water too hot? Turn another handle and cool it off. Gettin’ hungry? Go pop open the fridge. Thirsty? Grab a glass and get ice / ice cold water from the DOOR of the fridge. Need to go to town? Jump in your climate-controled juke box on wheels. Brrr. The house too cold? Turn that dial on the wall.

    I hope your are right and we will finally have a president come January 20, 2013 as we have been without one since January 20, 2009.

    I do enjoy your forays into your family’s past.

    • John Myers

      Thanks Old Henry,
      I always enjoy your posts and want to thank you for being a loyal reader.
      Happy 4th of July Henry, and to all of the great people that read Bob and the rest of us.
      John Myers

  • The Christian American

    I have learned that people rarely go doctors until they know they are sick. My father was sick so what did he do? He went to the doctor. The same applies to nations. Only a fool would know America was sick, possibly terminal. The doctor has to subscribe, medicine consisting of morality, a return to original Constitution, humility instead of Satan’s sin, pride and so on. Whose the doctor America needs? Look in the mirror. “I saw the enemy and the enemy is us”.

  • Benjamin Fox

    I enjoyed his story, what America was built on, not like the freeloaders of today, need a nannie to do every thing for them, a bunch who wouldn’t make it a week with out help from our socialist, soon to be marxist country. Sad, don’t expect to see this country the same the next 4th if there is even a country. Those armed are citizens, those unarmed are slaves, many are ripe for the plantation but, I’m not one of them or their idiot-leader-in-chief.

  • JeffH

    This excert from an essay written by Mario Pei appeared in the Saturday Evening Post of May 31, 1952

    The America We Lost-America’s Government Was Conspicuous by Its Absence
    When I first came to America in 1908, I learned a new meaning of the word “liberty”—freedom from government.

    In that horse-and-buggy America, if you made an honest dollar, you could pocket it or spend it without having to figure what portion of it you owed the government or what possible deductions you could allege against that government’s claims. You did not have to keep books and records of every bit of income and expenditure or run the risk of being called a liar and a cheat by someone in authority.

    Above all, the national ideal was not the obscure security of a government job, but the boundless opportunity that all Americans seemed to consider their birthright. Those same Americans loved their government then. It was there to help, protect, and defend them, not to restrict, befuddle, and harass them. At the same time, they did not look to the government for a livelihood or for special privileges and handouts. They were independent men in the full sense of the word.

    America in those days made you open your lungs wide and inhale great gulps of freedom-laden air, for here was one additional freedom—freedom from government.

    Foreign-born citizens have been watching with alarm the gradual Europeanization of America over the past twenty years. They have seen the growth of the familiar European-style government octopus, along with the vanishing of the American spirit of freedom and opportunity and its replacement by a breathless search for “security” that is doomed to defeat in advance in a world where nothing, not even life itself, is secure.

    Far more than the native-born, they are in a position to make comparisons. They see that America is fast becoming a nineteenth-century-model European country. They are asked to believe that this is progress. But they know from bitter experience that it just isn’t so.

    Hope all of my fellow patriots enjoy their July 4th as I am.

    Have a Happy 4th of July.

  • Born Here American Citizen

    Canadian. Figures.

  • mike

    If we cannot make a clean sweep of congress because the system is rigged then are there enough who are willing to enact the means Jefferson warned might be necessary?

    Thomas Jefferson once stated the tree of liberty must sometimes be refreshed with the blood of patriots and tyrants. I’m certain many would agree, the tyrants are here but are there enough patriots if the ballot box fails to bring relief?

    • swampfox


  • Susan Dowming

    The Comment Policy states that “slanderous comments” will not be tolerated” toward the “author(s) or comment participants.” it apparently is okay if someone writes from an “extreme” viewpoint such as Homer does when he repeats slanderous lies about our president being a Muslim and a communist. I will not be looking at this website again.

    • nc

      Susan, don’t leave! Hang around and be entertained by the paranoia of the wingnuts here!Where else can we be threatened by a conspiracy to take over our country that “started” in 1913 that has not quite materalized yet? By “news” of the fact there will be NO Elections in 11/12! That Obama will be a dictator by then!!! That a man can be called a Muslim BECAUSE THEY NEED Him to be one NOT because they can PROVE he is one! That he is called a “communist” because they NEED for him to be one JUST to satisfied their warped minds and NOT because they can PROVE it!
      Their paranoia has my back yard full of “federal agents” ready to seize me and my property! Problem is I haven’t seen any yet and neither have my neighbors! I have children in Georgia and Virginia and neither have they seen any!HAVE YOU?? Any body out there been seized by the government?? Know anyone who has been “bodily seized” by the government?
      Please stay and continue to point out the fact that all that you read here does not originate from sound minds and quite often, too often in fact, lacks the element of truth!

    • JeffH

      Bye, bye!

  • Rick

    What was the name of first African republic? Not kingdom, but republic. Who was the first well documented African scientist?

    • nc

      Rick, if we ALL came from Africa the All scientist are Africans! If we all came from the Garden of Eden then All scientist are either Iraqi or Persian or from some Muslim region!
      Pay your money and take your choice!!

    • Jamws Heronime

      The Congo Republic. Mfusu Orgondo inventeed the first foot long banana split with macadamea nuts and Dr. Dwana Ibisu for discovering the uncola nut.


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