I’d Rather Do It On My Own!

October 28, 2011

Dear Mr. President: Thanks, I like being on my own!

My great-grandfather raised tobacco, corn and winter wheat on a 10 acre farm in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. There was a cow, four hens, and a rooster. Oh, and a sawmill where he cut white oaks to build a three-story farmhouse complete with glass windows, storm doors and three wood burning fireplaces. He also raised 14 chidden there. And he did it on his own.

One of those children went to college and received a degree in architecture. He moved to New York and built 10 brownstone apartment houses on 63rd Street between Park Avenue and Madison Avenue. The rent from those buildings, which had marble foyers and great room entry columns, made him very wealthy until The Great Depression when he lost his rights to all of the buildings in bankruptcy court. And he did it on his own. Without ever whining, on the way up and on the way down.

My father had no more than a fifth-grade education. He was the smartest man I have ever known. He never completed his education because he had to help his family survive economically. Much later, he took the test for Certified Public Accountant, passed it the first time, and opened an accounting firm that is still very active in my hometown with his shingle hanging on main street. And he did it on his own.

Oh, while he was about it, he sent three children to three of America’s finest Universities. He paid for their full educations. And he did it on his own.

I graduated from Duke University, served my country for six years in The United States Marine Corps, rose to the level of Executive Vice President in one of Madison Avenue’s top Advertising firms, educated four children, and retired as a writer and author. And I did it on my own.

Oh by the way, one of my children lives in Manhattan. He is a residential Real Estate Broker. He represents two of those brownstone buildings on 63rd Street between Park and Madison Avenues. So, you see, Mr. President, what goes around, comes around.

So, please do not ask me if wealth is fairly distributed in America. Wealth is not distributed in America. It is EARNED! It always has been, and it always will be so long as we are a true Democracy.

And please don’t tell me that, “I’ll be on my own,” if I do not endorse your sad, illiterate, race to make America a Socialist country. Excuse me, sir. I had rather do it . . . ON MY OWN!

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