The following musical piece called Born in the U.S.A. is a musical piece written and performed by Bruce Springsteen. It illustrates both the aftermath and the previous life of an American soldier that has been fighting during the war in Vietnam.
The narrator is somewhat described as a sort of outlaw in the American community, before he is sent to Vietnam that is. The following quotation from the first verse characterizes this pretty well.
“End up like a dog that's been beat too much, till you spend half your life just covering up“ ...view middle of the document...
The text actually shows that the reason of his voyage was some hometown jam (maybe a brawl).
“Got in a little hometown jam, so they put a rifle in my hand”
A goon that suddenly would have his identity changed from low-life to national patriot and hero, by joining sides with the anti-communist forces, led by the U.S.A.
That is what he probably thought he would become, but Springsteen exposes the reality quite differently. The soldier did not really receive a welcome of a hero, neither of a patriot when he returned home. The reality was a fear of the shadow of the penitentiary. ¨
In addition, whilst the losses during the war kept him struggling with his life, a work at an oil refinery was actually his only solution besides jail, shown in the last stanza before the ending chorus of the song.
Even though the song in popular belief is seen as some sort of patriotism, (The republicans even tried to use it in a political campaign once) I believe that it shows the darker sides of what the American warfare methods is doing to their own kin.
The media constantly reminds us of the homeless veterans that roam the American streets, and even today, we see a rise in mental illness amongst the veterans returning from other American prospects as Iraq and the Middle East.