Although a few of my descendants and many of my readers may believe otherwise, I was not an active participant in the Boston Tea Party, but had I been alive at that time, I would have been seen in full native attire.
However, I'm sure that those who so fiercely objected to taxation without representation would suffer fatal apoplexy if they could witness what evolved over the ensuing years with representation - or, more precisely, with the (mis)representation which is now the law(lessness) of the land.
After they and their courageous successors shed the shackles of colonialism, the American fever of outrage subsided somewhat, only to return episodically when, for example, Pearl Harbor was clobbered in 1941.
It surfaced again more recently, when a cabal of sneaky scumbags reduced our World Trade Center to a mass crematorium.
Between such tragic events, unanimous citizen anger tends to seethe below the surface of public speak-out, except for pockets of partisanship, the flotsam and jetsam of news headlines and random beefing at political rallies, cocktail parties and similar towers of babble.
The angry patriot (genus pistoffus americanus) seems, at times, doomed to be only footnote worthy in the pages of history or fiction, along with Tyrannosaurus Rex, Rex the Wonder Dog and the wreck of the Hesperus.
Of late - and one hopes that this has not come too late - there are heartening signs that the fictional Howard Beale ("I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore!") has inspired an aroused electorate, this humble scrivener included, to new heights of impatience with our entrenched officeholders on both sides of the political aisle.
This has resulted in surprising shifts in the opinion polls, surprising upsets at the polling places and a surprisingly long queue headed toward the exits from public service.
Ranking high, perhaps highest, among the gripes of an unhappy electorate is the apparent unwillingness of those in charge to recognize that good ideas are only workable if they are affordable or totally unavoidable.
This is a reality with which all their constituents live every day of their lives, and with which they themselves must cope when they emerge from the cocoon of Government land. (Therein, of course, all problems can be solved, all backs can be scratched and all dreams can come true by simply passing laws and printing money.)
If the truth be told - admittedly a most unlikely happenstance in public affairs - we can't possibly pay the bills already piled on America's kitchen table and we're unwilling (ashamed, maybe?) to admit that our present course has gone well beyond completely confiscating the piggy banks of our kids and grandkids.
Moreover, we haven't the guts or the integrity or the compassion or the genuine caring to make the sacrifices necessary to change that course before it robs them of any shot at the opportunities we inherited from our immediate ancestors.
As presently constructed, such blessed bovines as Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and many "guaranteed" retirement programs are at least partially empty promises. Ditto so-called "entitlements," unless they are backed up by solid, sensible and sustainable funding.
Recognizing these facts of life would involve first facing reality, then tightening belts and paying the pipers whose morbid melodies we have chosen to tune out, as we dance to looney tunes from Neverland.
What to do? Come every Election Day from this moment on, vote against every candidate who has not found and/or will not commit to finding solutions to, or mitigation of, the problems we now face as a nation.
These are problems that seem hell-bent on worsening before (shame on us!) we dump them on our beloved begets.
If they've had one shot at finding and implementing solutions, or two, or 20, vote them out - yes, all of them.
By doing so, we'll send an unmistakable signal to those who follow that genus pistoffus americanus has an unlimited supply of tea bags in stock and we are no longer an endangered species.
Send them a copy of this, if you'd like, so they'll know where you stand before they sit in a seat of power that really belongs to you!