I was intrigued by a posting in a now-closed thread regarding the themes of Springsteen's "Born in the U.S.A." I was on vacation last week and didn't get the chance to chime in. This is something that has interested me for a while, as I too have heard the song blaring on the radio on the Fourth. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E3PkmGgY4iw Above is the orginal version of the song recorded sometime in the early 1980s. I believe it was initially meant to be included in the Nebraska album, but was left off. There is no rousing chorus in this one, and the lyrics are more easily understandable. I think the true intent comes through a lot clearer in the earlier version. With the single that came out on the Born in the U.S.A. album, it's very easy to not listen to the lyrics. As mentioned in the other thread, it is a rather bleak song, and certainly not "patriotic" in the traditional sense. Frederick Douglass said "A true patriot is a lover of his country who rebukes and does not excuse its sins." In that sense, maybe the Boss's song is patriotic after all.