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Abraham Lincoln Statue, Gettysburg National Military Park Visitor's Center, November 8, 2010

Abraham Lincoln Statue, Gettysburg National Military Park Visitor’s Center, November 8, 2010, (c)2010 James S. Oppenheim

I’m an American of Jewish descent and the last name tells of a small wine-making town on the Rhine. Perhaps growing up the proper noun-based cultural infusions in the development of self-concept shaped whatever it is I’ve become, but had those details been missing, would I have gravitated toward writing, music, photography, and, later, blogging?

In the democratic modern mode, there’s a lot more going on in the “mixing” of the person — multiple influences and variables — and in many ways we choose our character and if not for better — I’ve been handed some things . . . haven’t made a good life or at least picket-fence-and 2.5 children template of the “American Dream” — then at least for the possession of integrity, an authentic existence, which I think ultimately a good thing.

In other modes — authoritarian, medieval, Orwellian — legacy may indeed fix in place the future.

On the left sidebar of my blog are in essence listed my values —

We should be able to enjoy our respective ethnolinguistic and other legacies in heritage by finding for ourselves what is noble in survival and scrapping and shrugging away and tucking in the miseries of the past. For everyone: something happened back there — so what needs to happen to produce a better experience in living, personal and community-wide, tomorrow?

I don’t know where I want to be buried anymore.

Is there an “American” cemetery somewhere?

Who are your people?

My people are Americans.