My sister and I were raised in the Foreign Service, spending all but 5 years of our youth in Latin America and Europe: those 5 years we were in Washington DC learning American. Our father, Robert C. Amerson, was with the United States Information Agency through the Cold War, from 1955 to 1975. Our mother, Nancy R. Amerson, was in the last generation of Foreign Service wives who worked side-by-side with their husbands without expectation of pay.  Bob and Nan were an amazing team, winning hearts and minds in eight posts, in five countries, in two continents. They made it impossible for me to be anything but a fierce defender of America’s democratic ideals.  This is how I think of the world.