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Sunday, September 12, 2010

This Could Happen in the USA?

I am worried because too many people, especially our youth, don't even have a clue as to what living under a totalitarian regime is like. Here is my story, how I learned about the evils of government domination and became the patriotic freedom-fighter that I am today.

I am a descendant of immigrants from Yugoslavia. They immigrated to the United States around 1900. As a young child, I took it for granted that my grandmother and mother spoke in a different language when they got together. I took it for granted that we ate different food at Grandma's house such as potica, blood sausage, sallata, and homemade noodles. It was when I was five years old that something happened to make me painfully aware that something was, indeed, very different about my family.

At that time, my mother disappeared for a while. I didn't really understand where she was, but when she came back, she brought a stranger with her, a stranger to live in our home. His name was France. He was my mom's cousin, and he lived with us for about a year. He was very nice and a lot of fun, but he was very nervous. He was nervous all the time. When we would go out in the car he would constantly be looking around, smoking a cigarette, with hands shaking, glancing continuously at the cars behind us or next to us. He would say things like, "They are after me." "They have followed me here." "They're going to get me."

There were other things peculiar about him, also. He ate fast, and one day he filled up a table top with stacks of food and my brother took a picture of it. France laughed and said he was going to send this picture to Tito. "Who is Tito?" I wondered. "And why does France want him to know that he has all this food?"

Then he started talking about his life in Yugoslavia. He said his family used to live on a beautiful farm, but the government took it away from them. He said the Communists controlled everyone and everything. They couldn't even cut a tree down on their own property for firewood. He was afraid to walk from the house to the barn for fear of being shot. You had to be careful of everything you said because if you said something against the government, you put your life at risk. France's brother, August, did speak out and was pushed in front of a train and his legs were cut off. The Communists called it an "accident." August survived and went to the hospital, where he was poisoned -- another "accident." We had a collie dog that I loved. One day I was hugging the dog and France told me that people couldn't have dogs in Yugoslavia because they couldn't afford them. He said people would stand around eating with both hands up to their mouth for fear of dropping crumbs on the floor -- they couldn't afford to drop any food because they didn't have enough to eat. He told me that the Communists brainwashed the citizens with propaganda and changed the history of their country. I couldn't believe it. "How could they get by with that?" I thought.

Read it all here.

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