Based on a True Story (Part 2)

Richard V. is 55 years old. He grew up in a small town on the Mississippi River and started driving a truck before he finished high school. Here is what he has to say.

I come from one of them small towns you’re always reading about. In Missouri. We call it ‘the heartland.’ I think that’s right, like it’s the heart and soul of the country. Don’t mean to get all wishy-washy or nothing, but I just feel that way. Lots of folks around here do.

We got lots of farmland, all around. I can drive ten minutes in pretty much any direction, and I’m looking at somebody’s cows, or fields full of corn. But my dad, he was a truck driver. And that seemed good enough for me. So, my older brother, he went off to college, and I took up with my dad, driving his eighteen-wheeler, part-time, when I was still in high school. Ya might say I fell in love with it. I sure did. We got I-55 running there right alongside town. So, I got good access for the long hauls. My favorite part of it all is driving early morning, around sunrise. Cup of hot coffee, watching the dew come off the ground, like it’s some kind of … like it’s a smoke signal, a wake-up call or some such thing. It’s a new day, and I’m first to see it.

Politics? Well, I used to be a Democrat. Just like my dad, and his dad before him. Used to like what they had to say, looking out for the little guy and all that. But at some point, not sure when that was, I guess I just got tired of what they was saying after a while. It’s like, somewhere along the way, seems the Democrats lost their way. Nowadays, they just keep making the government bigger and bigger. And they can’t stop spending money, way too much of it. Acting like it’s their money instead of ours. I think that’s wrong. Cause it ain’t their money. Hell, I mean, I work hard.

I’m an independent. Independent contractor. Drive my own truck so, I don’t earn a wage, but I drive jobs for other people, and I pay myself at the end of the day. Bought my first truck from my dad. Then I bought my next one off him, when he retired. I like being my own boss. Wouldn’t have it any other way.

What I earn is mine. And it don’t grow on trees. And it don’t rain down from heaven neither. Sooner or later, you’re left having to put things right again. And now that’s what America has to do. Start putting things right. So now, I vote Republican. What they say about the economy, it just makes more sense to me. Less government, more freedom. I like the sound of that.

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