14 August 2007

A Video to Watch

I’ve just watched a very good video on YouTube, a medium that I am occasionally astounded by because there are a few (or more than a few) gems in there. This is about one of them. I found out about it from the FoxNews website, which also has a copy up for viewing. It reportedly was made more than a year ago and apparently by a Marine, or at the very least by someone who wanted to be seen as a Marine. It is a spoken-word poem (or others call it a rap, but it’s more poetic, I feel) about 9/11, the long war we’re in, fighting for freedom and what it means to be an American (or perhaps what it doesn’t mean).

Two things I noticed. First, this young man is passionate about his chosen profession (assuming he’s in the military) and understands quite clearly what the purpose of his service is. Those who do not understand what military service is all about might gain some insight from this video. Those who do understand military service will probably identify with this young man.

Second, the poem opens and closes with reference to different ethnic groups in the US and then collapses them all, rightly, into just one large group: Americans. It gives me great hope to see a young man dismiss ethnic labels quickly and with such clarity. We need to find out just where he learned this attitude, from whom he developed this positive attitude and identity. I have my guesses. You might as well.

The headline on the FoxNews article reads, “Who is this Mystery Man?” While it might be interesting to find out, I don’t think that his identity really matters. What matters more is his message. Unfortunately, if you happen to go to the YouTube sight you’ll probably see a number of disparaging comments left by viewers. How jaded some have become. How much do some need hope and purpose, and not just self-serving purpose but purpose larger than the self. And more than that, constructive rather than destructive. And once again, where do people get hope and purpose from?

1 comment:

Melissa said...

He seems to have been found... http://www.andydenton.com/2007/08/14/the-search-for-badass-marine-is-over/