There have always been myths about our nation. Not necessarily lies, but rather collective beliefs which can help explain and energize us. Take some of our favorite myths,usually from the Old West. The myth of the rugged, tall-in-the-saddle loner (Clint fits that one, until his bizarre monologue at Tampa]...the myth we are a good and peace-loving people [gunslingers only draw when they're forced to]...the myth that in America everyone gets a second chance [why draw poker was the game of choice in those saloons].
While experts such as Joseph Campbell have examined humanity's many national myths, each of us also creates and lives our own myths. Yes, we do! We can't help but mythologize our lives and that of our family. Born from humble beginnings [the Lincoln log cabin]...or maybe immigrants who came to the New World and became a great success [Andrew Carnegie made that one famous]....or perhaps we like to tell tales around the family bonfire about the great love stories running through our veins [the high school sweethearts who married 50 years ago who are still here to talk about it].
Nothing wrong with mythologizing, because it helps capture the narrative we've been living all these years. So what if we embellish some of the facts and dates! Hollywood's been doing that for generations and we keep coming back for more. Why? Because although facts may be stranger than fiction, some myths can be better than both...
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