John and daughter Marie 1987
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Miracle on Ice

It was cold in America in the winter of 1980, and not just the temperature. Soviet soldiers occupied Afghanistan, and with the Cold War in high gear, US-USSR tensions were high.
Unemployment was up, real estate was down, and Iran held our citizens hostage.
Many Americans felt helpless.  We needed a lift.
And out of nowhere, 20-some-odd young men gave the country a lift.
It has become known as the "Miracle on Ice," but the United States ice hockey team's victory over the Soviet Union and subsequent Gold Medal in the Winter Olympics was no miracle.  A group of American boys simply worked hard enough to beat the world.
Back in 1980, professional athletes were not permitted in the Olympics.  We played by the rules.  The Soviets didn't. There was no US "dream team," it was our college kids against their full-time hockey players.
And we won!  Ranked among the bottom teams in the Olympics, our fellas said, "Da, da America; nyet, nyet Soviet" and beat the best team in the world.
The symbolism was worthy of a novel studied in college, and Americans responded.
We got a lift; some national pride; some momentum.
With Americans of 2004 living under a cloud of terrorism in a nervous economy, Hollywood is giving us the Miracle on Ice again.  This time it's a movie.  If your pride of citizenship needs a refill, go see it.