I wrote earlier about how I don't understand why some Polytheists are trying to redo a lot about our ancestors, because for Americans we are shaped by our own culture. That there are benefits to being American. Here are some of them, that come to mind for me.
America is a land shaped by many nations and many cultures. Our food is an amalgam of Native American(popcorn)Italian(Spaghetti), Spanish(Tex Mex, Chilli, burritos etc), Chinese,Germany(hamburger, hot dogs) etc. It should come as no wonder that is also true for non food stuff as well. That is another long post all on its own.
This may end up being a serial which I will write when things poke me.
1. Freedom! We are free to say, and worship pretty much as we please. Our men and women have died to ensure that and I'm sure that William Wallace would be proud. We also don't have to pay a tax nor be second class citizens in order to practice what we want.
Pagans have weathered the SRA abuse scandal.http://www.people.vcu.edu/~dbromley/undergraduate/spiritualCommunity/SatanicCults.html
We have fought to get Pentacles and other symbols on our veterans headstones for the VA to pay for them.http://religionandpolitics.org/2012/06/20/the-plight-of-pagans-in-the-military/
We have a circle at Ft Hood and other Pagan religious places are coming into being.http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/national/daily/june99/wicca08.htm
By the way for any Pagans that are still grumpy about Bob Barr, he has since said he was an ass and apologized, lets forgive him already.
The above is small taste from my memory of the importance of Freedom of religion to American Pagans. Many of the fears of the abuse of the government on Satanic Ritual Abuse still hold, some real(CPS and DCF have far to much power imho) and some to fuel the victim complex some of us have and continue to flog(ahem burning times).
We owe no fealty to anyone. We have no king, no pompous lord to which we are serfs , no chief. Which for me, is something I've always has issues with, when Paganism tries to put Hierarchy back in. We got rid of that for a reason. (Wicca and Hp and HPS aka Lord and Lady of English romantic yore and Heathens with the Chief thing)
Anyone can be anything. There is none of that you can only be a Knight if you are of noble blood nonsense. The Weasleys would have been middle class since they were civil servants, and held in just as high regards as Draco's family. Voldemort would not have been able to pull off that pure blood bullshit. Try to cow us with fear, and we strike back hard. It's one of the few times us caterwauling cat types will actually band together. That and we understand what inbreeding are, which is what happens when you try to keep the bloodlines pure(ahem looking at you European Nobility and Egyptian Royalty)
We live in an ancient land, who's Gods and Spirits were the stories of the various Native American tribes. The names of the tribes are scattered throughout the geography of the various states. The tales and spooky stories still abound. The European and Chinese American are new veneers over this land. The Christian God has only been here since the late 1400's. Our Gods while old and known, are newer still in relation to the Native American and Christian God in this land.
The things you may encounter may not be things that you have taken the time to study. It helps to keep an open mind. Some fights haven't ended for some spirits.
Modern American is like the Roman Empire, very diverse and full of many cultures. We are fairly accepting, even more so then them(See why Christians had so much issues in those olden times). We have a variety of Gods that we can choose to worship or even choose not to.
We don't have to accept bribery, con artistry and or corruption in those that we put in office. It is perfectly acceptable to discuss if a religious leader is being a con artist. It is ethical to say I don't agree with this person because I think they are in it for money and attn. An old leader, who is now in the summerland made this http://www.neopagan.net/ABCDEF.html
We have more to go on that. We regularly give billing to people that would make Houdini twitch. We still have drama fests over who is ethical and what is lore. We need to find a balance between critical thinking and anything goes.
That's all I have for now.