The ‘Real American’ Test

Barack Obama's not the only one being questioned.

As for everyone else, take it from me: You are what the moderators call a “Fringe American,” which means that you are just living here—precariously, at that. If you speak with an accent, you are just living here. If your parents are from another country, you are just living here. If you are from the Middle East or India, or even look like you are, you are just living here. And watch your step, bub, we’re keepin’ an eye on you.

Welcome to the land of the free and home of the brave, where everyone gets a fair shake and all men are created equal. Don’t bother opening your exam books, your grades have already been decided and will be branded on your cheeks while you sing the national anthem.  

Tetsuhiko Endo is a writer embedded in the political battle-ground of Columbus, Ohio.