America isn't great? Says who?

From the comforts of liberty, they cite all the reasons why this country has no merits. We are a lousy people, they say.

Jack Engelhard, | updated: 23:40

OpEds Jack Engelhard
Jack Engelhard
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If he says mustard belongs on a hot dog, they’ll say no, only ketchup – and for that too they’d want him impeached. 

So when, a few days ago, at the rally in Orlando, President Trump suggested that his new slogan, to replace MAGA, might be “Keep America Great,” that’s all they needed. Democrat headliners like Cory Booker and Eric Holder and the entire staff at CNN, jumped all over him for his chutzpah to celebrate American exceptionalism.


Every single Israeli is luckier than Moses, who begged to enter the Promised Land, “this good earth,” and never got the chance...
No, America was never great. So they say, and then, from the comforts of liberty, they cite all the reasons why this country has no merits. We are a lousy people, they say.

Strange, but I know it differently, and so does my friend Benny in Israel, who says I should set the record straight from the point of view of someone who came to America as one of the huddled masses yearning to breathe free – and found it to be exactly so, warts and all. What luck to be an American! 

Only the Israelis, he says, and I say, share the same good fortune to live in a land that they love and that loves them back.

Every single Israeli is luckier than Moses, who begged to enter the Promised Land, “this good earth,” and never got the chance – except to glimpse it from afar.
 

Back in America…

No, they insist. We are hopeless. We are irredeemable. We are sinners and we must repent and make reparations. It is their grievance of the week.

Nearly all the candidates vying to unseat Trump have taken up this demoralizing anti-patriotic stance and we can only wonder, is this any way to campaign for the highest office? 

Is there an audience for this?

If so, this is not the country I stepped into years ago from another world, eyes opened, one particular day, to the splendors of freedom.

No, I cannot name all the reasons for my gratitude, but I can name one. 

I see a kid on a ship, too young and too confused to know where he’s being taken. He knows better than to ask. 

Around him, people, his people, have always been whispering. Or so it seems. It is understood that a wrong word can get them taken away.

Something happened and young as he was, he knew everything had changed. He was taken from his crib, placed in a rucksack on his father’s back, and up they went into the mountains, and later he would know it as the Pyrenees, and later on he would know all the rest of it, too, mostly from his sister, but not then.

Then he only knew that it was proper to be frightened because the world had gone dark. People, his people, were being hunted.

What had they done? What had they done to deserve this? This he would never know. Not then. Not even now.

After all that, after many moments of fright, of miracles, and finally deliverance, one moment stands out above the rest…and the rest of it I tell in this memoir.

For some reason, we are on a train to New York City and I am not sure if this is good or bad. Are we now, finally, allowed to talk?

Back there and back then trains were monsters. People were herded into them and never came back.

Now we are in a huge place and it is Grand Central Terminal and it is magnificent. Inside, and later outside on the street, people are talking and laughing as loudly as they want.

What is this? This is America.

Yes, this is what America means to me. People don’t have to whisper.

That says it all for me, still.

New York-based bestselling American novelist Jack Engelhard writes regularly for Arutz Sheva.

He is the author of the international book-to-movie bestseller “Indecent Proposal.” His Holocaust to Montreal memoir “Escape from Mount Moriah” has been honored from page to screen at CANNES. His Inside Journalism thriller, “The Bathsheba Deadline,” is being prepared for the movies. Contemporaries have hailed him “The last Hemingway, a writer without peer, and the conscience of us all.” Website: www.jackengelhard.com




 

 







 




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