To the editor:

I wanted to comment on patriotism and the letter from the patriot Kathy Finney. Patriotism is not a monolithic concept as it occurs in several different forms. There is a brand of patriotism which attracts scoundrels and other similar types like the Confederate flag-flying idiots, white supremacists and neo Nazis and their useful idiots and fellow travelers and similar types who write letters to this paper. I am not a Democrat or Republican but I can sense this pseudo patriotic bullcrap from a mile away.

My ancestors came from Prussia and Hesse in Germany. My great uncle, Wirt, fought in France against Germany and won three bronze stars for valor. When he was in the hospital in Virginia he got a personal letter from his regimental commander which I have a copy of.

Wirt was a real patriot and not a big-mouthed chickenhawk like Newt Gingrich to mention a classic examples of patriotic scoundrelism. When Gingrich was asked why he didn’t serve in uniform he stated that “he had more important things to do.” There are the so-called patriots with big mouths and then there are the real patriots like Jesse, my Black friend who, as a master sergeant fought the Battle of Hamburger Hill in Vietnam which was fought by the Army’s 101st Air Assault division.

Jesse never talks about his patriotism as he doesn’t have to. I would take a bullet for Jesse if I had to but I certainly wouldn’t take one for you Ms. Finney or anyone like you. The American flag deserves respect, but America is the citizens of this country and not just the white ones. The Pledge of Allegiance should reflect truth, but, unfortunately, for many Americans, it hasn’t. My hope is that someday it will.

Hans Cristoph Hildebrand


Recommended for you

(1) comment

Gregory Wallace

Hans, your attempt to seize the patriotic and moral high ground failed and landed with a dull thud. You actually had to resort to the old "Some of my best friends are black." to prop up whatever you were trying to say and whatever point you were trying to make. As the revolution began one of the first to die was Cuspus Attucks a free black. He was a patriot. When the revolution began any black that signed up to fight for 1 year was freed from slavery which the brits brought to the new world. They were Patriots. When the War to free the slaves began Colored troops fought for America and died along side white soldiers. They were Patriots and so it goes. The constitution and the bill of rights is upheld by Patriots of all kinds not unlike your 101St AB friend you mentioned hopefully with his permission. Not just anyone especially someone whose behavior brought them to their end while in conflict with the police AGAIN. deserve a flag at half staff. Do you get it now?

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.