Cranfield Rowell: We're All Americans

Thursday, November 15, 2018 - by Cranfield Rowell

I was so pumped when the 1996 Olympics were held in Atlanta. Nations from around the world were coming to my area of the world to see what my side of ‘America’ had to offer in terms of beauty, patriotism, and athletic ability. I wore a Nike hat with the American flag on it almost every day. I wrote my American flag T-shirt. I was proud to be an ‘American’.

Around 10 years later my place of employment hired a new guy. He had just moved to the United States from Columbia. We fast became buddies. One day at work he became slightly annoyed with me and my oversharing of ‘America Facts’ during a 4th of July lunch event. “You people, you guys just took America and made it yours.” I asked him what he meant. He wasted no time in sharing his feelings. “When I have visited other countries I’ve said I was from Columbia in South America. And someone would say something like they like President Bush! There is a whole other America! Not only that the United States is one of three countries in North America! You guys just took the name of two continents with so many countries and made it your name! You ‘AMERICANS’.”  I sensed his slight annoyance so I offered to let him wear my American flag hat while handing him my souvenir American flag.

I understand his frustration. Why do we call our flag the American flag? Why do we call ourselves Americans? Do foreign countries meet tourists from the Western Hemisphere and assume they are all from the United States?

I imagine a man and woman having three children. Let’s just give this man a relatively common name you’d find in any country in the Western Hemisphere like… Steve Rogers. We’ll call the woman Diana Prince. Steve and Diana get married in which she takes his last name and, like previously mentioned, have three children. The children are George, John and Thomas. Steve and Diana tell the three kids that George’s full name is George Rogers, while the other two can just go with whatever last name they choose. But deep down, we all know you’re all Rogers.” John is furious. “Exactly! We are all Rogers! Why do we have to be identified as something else? Why does he get the name of Rogers!” Steve emphatically says, “Well George was here first. You should have been born before him if you wanted dibs.” Thomas, who is only three years old and the ever smart one, cries foul. “Wow father. That argument completely lacks all elements of logic. It makes no sense. Maybe I will just take a different last name, and a first name too while I’m at it! This is all crazy. From now on I’m Clark Kent!”

Patrons of Canada and Mexico, you are Americans too. The citizens of the five countries of South America I can name and the ones from the country I cannot, you too are Americans!

Would it be weird to see Captain America stop a bank robbery while wearing the colors and flag of Brazil? Probably. But we can adapt!

I’m proud to have been born in the United States. I love my country. But have the citizens of the United States ever claimed a title or identity, or anything really, that isn’t full ours to claim and make it our own?  That’s not who we are.

The people of the United States should be open to the possibility of identifying ourselves with a new name. A name we can unite behind. Uniters? Statesmen? ‘Mericans?… wait…


Ice On The Landing Hosts The 1st Annual Skillet Curling Championship

New Hamilton County Marriage Licenses

AUDIO: Clint Powell Interviews Clay Dennis And Shannon Brown


Cast iron skillets will be thrown on the ice on Tuesday in a combination of curling, bocce and shuffleboard ice for the Skillet Curling championship held at Ice on the Landing from 5-10 p.m. ... (click for more)

Here are the new marriage licenses from the County Clerk's office: ROMMEL EDWARD SILLEMON TOSHIBA OCTAVIA THOMAS 1216 E 35TH ST 1216 E 35TH ST CHATTANOOGA, TN 37407 CHATTANOOGA, TN 37407 ... (click for more)

Clint Powell interviewed Clay Dennis and Shannon Brown, owners of Part-Time Business Partners. They discussed the struggles of business owners, common mistakes, the joys of business ownership ... (click for more)


Happenings

Ice On The Landing Hosts The 1st Annual Skillet Curling Championship

Cast iron skillets will be thrown on the ice on Tuesday in a combination of curling, bocce and shuffleboard ice for the Skillet Curling championship held at Ice on the Landing from 5-10 p.m. (one day after the rink closes its season to the public). Come watch and cheer on your favorite team, including such as Skillet Lickers, Natural Born Curlers, Bacon with Brooms, and Slippery ... (click for more)

New Hamilton County Marriage Licenses

Here are the new marriage licenses from the County Clerk's office: ROMMEL EDWARD SILLEMON TOSHIBA OCTAVIA THOMAS 1216 E 35TH ST 1216 E 35TH ST CHATTANOOGA, TN 37407 CHATTANOOGA, TN 37407 KELLY LAUREN BERGMANN KELSEY ROSE LOBACH 3842 ATLANTA DRIVE 3842 ATLANTA DRIVE CHATTANOOGA, TN 37415 CHATTANOOGA, TN 37415 RAYFORD DALE SMITH PATRICIA KAREN MILLER 5401 DUPONT ... (click for more)

Breaking News

2nd Man Charged In October 2018 Murder Of Jacob Dakota Moore Of Apison

A second arrest has been made in the October 2018 murder of Jacob Dakota Moore of Apison. Authorities earlier charged Askia Witherow in the slaying. On Thursday, warrants were issued for James David Robinson, 42, charging him with one count of first-degree murder, one count of especially aggravated kidnapping, four counts of especially aggravated robbery, four counts ... (click for more)

Linda Damewood Killed, Another Critical, Third Injured In Shooting At Crossville

One person was killed, another critically injured and a third hurt in a shooting at Crossville on Saturday. Linda Damewood, 74, of Crossville, was dead at the scene. The Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office, Tansi Security, and Tennessee Highway Patrol units responded to 8610 Cherokee Trail at approximately 6:38 p.m. to a reported shooting. Cumberland County Sheriff’s ... (click for more)

Opinion

Senator Alexander: A Reasonable Proposal To End The Government Shutdown

A government shutdown is always the wrong idea. It is the wrong idea under President Trump, just as it was the wrong idea under President Obama. Members of Congress should first remember that when a president who has been duly elected by the people of the United States -- whatever you may think of him or her -- has a legitimate objective, it is our responsibility to do everything ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Swimming With Jim Morgan

I’ve never talked much about this – it is too close to bragging – but in my teenaged years I was a good swimmer. I loved being in the water and maybe the greatest compliment back in the day was when new UT swimming coach Ray Bussard offered me a ‘full ride’ with the Vols. Are you kidding me … by then I was into tobacco, alcohol, convertibles, and girls in angora sweaters - there ... (click for more)