What Would Dad Think?

My dad never discussed politics with us, at least that is what my now senior mind recalls. We did not sit around the dinner table and have animated discussions about the upcoming elections and he did not voice many opinions regarding the current politicians in office. I did not know if he was a Democrat, Republican, or an Independent.

According to my father, my grandfather advised him to “never join anything,” for he believed that if he had done so, he would have been arrested by the Soviet secret police. Dad could not forget those words even after returning to America.

Still, I am positive that if he were alive today, he would have finally opened up and told us his views on politics. Seeing the coziness between the Soviet president and our current President of the United States, I am confident that he would have been vehemently opposed to such an alliance. He would never have accepted such a friendship after having lost several family members, whose deaths he believed were directly attributed to the policies of Josef Stalin.

Dad would have had no patience to the daily “alt-facts,” and he would have told us they were lies. The older he got, the more open he got with his opinions, and my mother had difficulty silencing him. A classic example was with one of my daughter’s boyfriends, who he believed was out of her life. When the young man walked into my parents’ home, Dad looked at him and said, “I thought we were done with you!”

So every time I hear a discussion of Putin and Trump, I would wonder, “What would Dad think?”

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About kjw616

I am a genealogy detective. I have already written one book about my Irish family's journey from 19th century Ireland to the United States- a family history sprinkled with personal anecdotes. My second book was intended to be a similar story about my Russian ancestors. Instead, it turned into a tale of just my father's immediate family. It is the tale of what happens when 6 children from New Jersey are moved to the Soviet Union by their Russian-born parents during the Great Depression. It details who lives, who dies, and who is able to return to NJ during a time when leaving the USSR was not an easy endeavor, particularly during World War II and the Cold War. It is my hope that those interested in history during this time period will find this story fascinating as well as those fellow amateur family historians who will learn some of the tools such as ancestry.com, visits to the National Archives, and local libraries I used to uncover this story.
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