Courtesy Of The Red, White And Blue (The Angry American)

Album: Unleashed (2002)
Charted: 25

Songfacts®:

  • Keith wrote this shortly after the terrorist attacks of 9/11. He said he wrote the song based on what he thought his father's thoughts on the terrorist attacks would have been. Keith's father was a veteran and a patriot. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Julian - Oakland, AR
  • This song established Toby Keith as an unwavering supporter of the American armed forces and a staunch supporter of the Bush administration. Those who didn't share Keith's views felt the song perpetuated a view of Americans as simple-minded thugs, particularly the lyrics, "We'll put a boot in your ass, it's the American way." Keith got a lot more attention when he spoke out against The Dixie Chicks after Natalie Maines said she was "ashamed the president of the United States is from Texas."
  • Toby Keith told the CBS show 60 Minutes that he wrote this song in just 20 minutes, a week after 9/11. His intention was to play it for troops on USO tours, but not to be part of a commercial release. However, after playing it for Pentagon brass in Washington, the Marine Corps commandant said, according to Keith: "You have to release it. You can serve your country in other ways besides suiting up in combat."

Comments: 45

  • Raven from IllinoisJeremy said: Okay, I'm trying to open minded here. Please explain something to me. Terrorists attacked New York City. Bush sent soldiers into Afghanistan and Iraq to find those responsible. Why is Bush a bad guy, he wants justice.

    From what I've heard from people, Bush was the one that allowed the terrorists to come into the country and take the planes. They also say that he is killing our servicemen and women out in Afghanistan and Iraq. I'm not sure whether that is true or not about him causing 9/11. But, many people think that Bush should've just left everything alone. I've noticed that many people don't like ANY of the presidents we've had over the years. They will bring up things that make the presidents look bad.
  • Austin from Us ArmyDavid said: I like Toby Keith, but I don't particularly like this song for several reasons... 1. The Statue of Liberty doesn't shake her fist. 2. You don't brag about having to fight someone... and "put a boot in your ass" is clearly that. We are talking about committing our best and our brightest to a war inwhich many will be killed, maimed, or tortured. Many will never be the same when they return and will need out care and support for years if not a lifetime afterwards. We are in some cowboy movie where the guy with the white hat rides in on his horse, kills the bad guy, and gets the girl in the end. This is an angry, hateful song, and that's why... morally... I object to it. Its sad that so many people don't understand that.

    Wow, really dude? This is one of the most patriotic songs I've ever heard. Hateful and angry? Of course it is hateful and angry. You don't include thousands of civilians in any attack. These bastards fight cowardly. They use their women and children as shields and Trojan horse with suicide vests on. The only way to win a war is to kill enough of your enemy so that they will lose the morale to keep fighting. We need to nuke them. If we could separate their women and children, it would be easy.

    P.S.
    I didn't have an account on this site until I saw this ignorant comment.
  • Bill Swerski from The South Will Raise Again!When I listen to this song and think of what Obama has done to our once proud country it almost makes me wanna cry.
  • Andrea from TnLove this song!!! I am so proud of Toby Keith for standing up and writing such a bold song!!! I wish people who bash this song would MOVE to another country! You should be proud of our troops, proud to be an American, and proud of all of our veterans! They fought for YOUR freedom! It's songs like this that show the world we are NOT afraid of terrorists. I am ready for a new President who will HUNT down these terrorists that kill our Americans!
  • Guy from Benson, NcDavid said "1. The Statue of Liberty doesn't shake her fist. 2. You don't brag about having to fight someone... and "put a boot in your ass" is clearly that. "

    The Statue of Liberty shaking her fist is a METAPHOR. Metaphors are used frequently in songs and books so that the singer can convey an idea without having to be too wordy. I'm sure you know that and were just grasping at straws to find fault in the song.
  • David from Dundalk, MdI like Toby Keith, but I don't particularly like this song for several reasons... 1. The Statue of Liberty doesn't shake her fist. 2. You don't brag about having to fight someone... and "put a boot in your ass" is clearly that. We are talking about committing our best and our brightest to a war inwhich many will be killed, maimed, or tortured. Many will never be the same when they return and will need out care and support for years if not a lifetime afterwards. We are in some cowboy movie where the guy with the white hat rides in on his horse, kills the bad guy, and gets the girl in the end. This is an angry, hateful song, and that's why... morally... I object to it. Its sad that so many people don't understand that.
  • Amanda from Lincoln, NeYou know my brother is in the Army and he has been to Iraq since 9/11. If it was not for people like Toby, my brother would feel hurt by all the anger and hatred about going to war after 9/11. You people who are speaking negatively towards this song need to understand that if it was not for our troops, we would not be the free country we are today. The way I look at it is if you do not like the song then do not listen to it.

    I love my brother and I am extremely proud of him. He puts his own life on the line for all of us. He came back and reenlisted because he felt that he needed to serve this country the best way he could. He has written about the death and destruction that happens every day there and not all of it is us. We are fighting for the thousands that died on 9/11.

    I hope that maybe you realize that without these Troops, the USA could still be under attack. They are all brave souls and my heart breaks for the deaths and I have so much compassion for the families of the troops. The military needs to be commended for all security and safety we have today.

    God Bless Our Military and God Bless the USA!!

    Please Toby keep making that beautiful music!!!!

    We love you!!!!
  • Johnnie from Crystal River , Flhonestly how is Toby Keith lame at least he is showing support for our Armed Forces like we should this is the reason as to why i am proud to be in NJROTC (Navy Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps) GOD BLESS AMERICA!!!
  • Christian from Orland Park, IlYou know all of you who are dissing this song really piss me off. How unpatriotic are you?! This is America, the GREATEST country in the world. We reserve the right to say what we want and Toby did that. This is for those troops and helps keep focus why theyre risking their lives for us. Shut the Hell up all of you who cant support the USA. If you think those "poor afghans" are so unfortunate, how bout this, you go over there and help them. Im sure it would be a pleasure for you to die alongside those afghans since you are no American in my eyes or any real American Patriots.
  • Garrett from Phenix City, AlI agree with all the people on this site who agree with Mr. Keith's song. Toby wrote the song shortly after the attacks, and I think he was just saying what needed to be said. I sang this song for a couple of the troops at the Walter Reed hospital in Washington DC a couple of years ago, and they liked it. I would also like to say that all these rights and this piece of land we have, we don't get to keep them by just backing down. How do you think we even got to start this country when we wanted to break away from the British. We had to fight for it. I also have a step uncle whose son is serving in the military, and that makes songs like this mean even more to me. I'd like to say to all the men and women defending our country, if there is any of you who read this comment weather you are over seas or here at home, I am darn proud of you and what you are doing. Keep up the good work. God bless you all!!!!!!
  • Dylon from Grant, Mii also agree with, Mallory, from Vineland, NJ
    if you don't like the great U.S of A get the f*ck out.
  • Mallory from Vineland, NjSome of you people are ridiculous. My husband died for this country, protecting some of you ignorant people and you have the nerve to call them "helpless afghans"? Well those "helpless Afghans" killed my husband, and because of them my daughter has to grow up without a father. Terrorists attacked OUR country and killed our citizens!!! What are we suposed to do...Look the other way while these people kill the people that we love? If it was one of your family members that died on 9/11 then it wouldnt be so "overblown and "ridiculous". The Iraqis and Afghanis got what they deserved. Im damn proud of my marine and ALL the soldiers that lay their life down for this country every day...While we are here b**ching about the president' policies and the "poor afghans" there are men and women over there dieing for our freedom. If you have such a problem with the presidents policies and america then leave. No one is making you stay in this country. If Toby Keith wants to show his respect for this country then so be it.
  • Kim from Birmingham, AlWe still have the First Amendment which allows us to say (or sing) what we feel. Any red blooded American is proud of the response Toby applied to the tragidy of 9/11. True many more have died in other places at the hands of the weather and GOD, but the events sung about in this song was an act of man. God bless Toby Keith and other artists who will not let us forget.
  • Marcus from Houston, TxWhat gets me about people like Kelli and her ilk is that they complain about how the U.S. has committed "atrocities" against "innocent civilians" of other countries but can't muster an ounce of outrage when these terrorists butcher, main, and slaughter innocent civilians with impunity of ANY country. Doesn't matter how heinous the act is, they always find a way to blame it on American foreign policy and actually have the audacity to garner sympathy for the terrorists. They get mad when someone says a prayer in school but can't even condemn terrorists who kill in the name of GOD (unless it's an abortion clinic bomber). They can't even bring themselves to use the words "terrorists" and "The War Against Terror" because they're too afraid they might offend people of other countries and it's divisive. They care more about what everybody thinks of them than what is the best response for this scenario. They hate Toby Keith's song but will celebrate muscians who glamorize violence and vulgarity against women, murder, gang activity, and other criminal behavior. They love songs that preach protesting against the "establishment" and insulting the president. In their mind, America "got what it deserved" because somehow, it's OUR fault. Well, I got news for you, Kelli. IT"S NOT OUR FAULT! We didn't cause 9/11 nor deserve it. Our soldiers are fighting against Islamofacism and the people who perpetuate it. We try to minimize civilian casualities the best way we can but the terrorists want to create as many CIVILIAN casualites as they can get. These people don't care if you're pro-war,antiwar, left,right, pacifist, or otherwise, THEY WANT TO KILL YOU REGARDLESS because you don't subscribe to their brand of Islam. It's as simple as that. The sad part is that people like you can't see what you do actually helps the terrorists. AS long as it furthers your agenda, it's all good. They have no plan on how the U.S. should deal with another terrorist act. All I can say is "REMBER FLIGHT 93"! It is not the war protester or pacifist that keeps America safe, it is the people in the military and law enforcement. God Bless Our Military, Firefighters, and Law Enforcement! At least they have the guts to do what needs to be done.
  • Austin from Smallsville,new England, --The song has nothing to do with Iraq so stop talking about it. And this song reflects how most of us felt against the enemy and if you didnt feel anger then you weren't there. And I bet O.B.L is sorry he messed with the U.S.A
  • Darrell from Thomasville, GaThese comments all have one thing in common. Something many servicemembers know by heart: "I may not agree with what you are saying, but I will defend to the death your right to say it."
  • Tom from Charleston, ScI'll say this, as a soldier in the US Army, I support the fact that we came here. Considering how we contribute to the local national economy and over all we got Saddam.

    While I don't support the harshness of War,
    counting those costs, it wasn't a waste.
  • Jeremy from Niverville, MbOkay, I'm trying to open minded here. Please explain something to me. Terrorists attacked New York City. Bush sent soldiers into Afghanistan and Iraq to find those responible. Why is Bush a bad guy, he wants justice.

    To all the srvicemen, thank you
  • Daniel from Arlington, TxSee "anatomy of your enemy" by anti-flag. It describes America much better than this song, that's for sure.
  • Geroge Lash from Lake City , MiThis song is in my opion the best song he has ever sang. it had more feeling behind it. if people dont like the song they dont have to listen to it . the best song about 9/11 ever writen
  • Austin from Smallsville, NeThis song is hated by liberals. Many mags like Rolling Stones and Spinner(both with liberal bias) gave him bad reviews where as others gave him good reviews. Also a lot of leftist mags named this the worst song ever for "not representing what America is". Yet they celebrate bands who want to shoot the president. Bias
  • Robert from Wetumpka, Alah! i love this song, i feel you Kim, i served in the army for over 10 yrs, served three tours in the middle east, one in Afghanistan and two in Iraq! Finally got out for my wife and two daughters, figured they need a husband and father! So this song means a lot to me and the men and women who fight or fought for freedom everyday. I also love that new song by Tim Mcgraw "If You're Reading This". We've lost 24 men all together out of the three times we went. Calvary leads the way! All the way! HOOAH!
  • Kim from North East, MdI do not understand how some of the ignorent people in this country can call themselves AMERICANS. My husband is serving OUR country in Iraqu. He puts his life on the line everyday for his country even the dumba** people that honestly don't have a clue!!! My family sacrifices every day --- maybe if some of the other coment submitters had to sacrifice a little more they would understand the true meaning to the songs that Toby Keith sings. I know that my family feels each and every word of his songs in our everyday lives. Thank you Mr. Keith from the bottom of my heart. Thank you for showing your support for my husband and all of the other soldiers that put their lives on the line everyday.
  • Dan from Phoenix, Azoh my how in the world did we get here... I just read Kelli's blurb about them HELPLESS AFGHANS living in them caves, bombing buildings, teaching their young to strap bombs to their bodies and blow up innocent people shopping in town, oh those innocent, poor Afghans... yet, US POMPOUS Americans, shouldnt have been in their way that September morn, and shame on us for BLOWING it out of context by striking back. WOW, too many Americans side with them, WHO DO WE TRUST????? Toby Keith wrote this song prior to IRAQ....it was released in 2002 and we invaded IRAQ in 2003! That song pumps pride and heart into the soldiers and that is needed for their well being and morale.
  • Liquid Len from Ottawa, CanadaMike, you got issues.
    "I hate it when ignorant people give advice about stuff they have no idea what they are talking about"
    is ironic when followed by
    "9/11, most of you sound like you were for it".
  • Glenn from Dallas, TxFor the folks that believe he did this for the money or to wave the flag for Bush. Toby Keith is a registered Democrat. He is on the record as not being behind the war in Iraq. He had no plans to publish the song and first played it exclusively for troops.

    From CBS 60 Minutes 2: "He wrote it to play for troops on USO tours ? something he often volunteers to do. He never intended to release the song on a CD, but then, he played it for Pentagon brass in Washington.

    ?He [the Marine Corp commandant] said, 'You have to release it. You can serve your country in other ways besides suiting up in combat.' We will go kick their butts. But we survive on morale,? says Keith. ?I mean, we live on the morale. That's what we travel on. And, he said I highly recommend you put that song out.?"

    It's pretty easy to change the dial if the song offends you. Speaking of which, if it offends so many of you why are you taking the time to come here and bash it? Do you just like being unhappy????
  • Justin from Alexandria, TnThis song is alright but it is a little boring. I mean it has meaning but I would like to hear the other stuff like guitar.
  • Mike from San Jose, CaSeems to me that more than half of you dont know what the hell your talking about. He wanted to make money off of this song??? He is already rich, damn I hate it when ignorant people give advice about stuff they have no idea what they are talking about. Try serving the military and than make some judgements about 9/11, most of you sound like you were for it!!!!
  • Brandon from Peoria, IlThe song may genuinely have to do with Toby's views (and it probably does), but what is pissing of everyone on this page that doesn't like the song is the following: Toby took the ultimate entrepreneur outlook on 9-11...he thought "how can i make a crap-load of money off of this?" I know...strum a heart-string of an already vulnerable America. Death and destruction sells, and he knew it. Lots of bands knew it, but Toby Keith is the only one who took it too far. During a tragedy is when nations in general get uber-patriotic and very, very, vulnerable. Toby made a brilliant move and it got him millions of adoring fans...but he lost at least one in me...FUTK
  • Phil from Sheboygan, WiAfter reading all of these different comments, I am amazed by the fact that "in America" we can state our views of likes, dislikes, displeasures, etc.... Now how is that possible? Because someone, at sometime, somewhere, shed some blood to defend that act...
    This song is a very pungent ways of saying yes, we are a kind, and generous people (hell we support have the world in aid), but don't mistake our generosity by thinking that we will not defend our rights to speak, sing, wave a flag, or voice our opinion of diffence.
    I love the song
    Phil
  • Amanda from Tampa, FlTo all of you that have a problem with Toby Keith and what he represents I feel that you need some serious mental help. I, myself am a memeber of our US Military and this song just shows the true spirit of what America really represents. Unless you are willing to put your life on the line for your country you have no room to pass judgement on anyone. IF I AND OTHER MILITARY MEMBERS DON'T HAVE A PROBLEM WITH IT THEN NEITHER SHOULD YOU.
    I think Mr. Keith is great and hearing his songs such as "The Angry American" make me proud to defend my counry and even give my life for it if necessary.
  • Jay from Atlanta, GaAllen, you hit the nail on the head.....I truly believe it...
  • Steve from Salt Lake City, UtInteresting how one song can get y'all so riled up!
    I think it's corny but at the same time I wanna say, HELL YEAH!!!
  • Danny from Waterville, NyThis is a great song and Mr. Keith has every right to sing it. He has strong ties to the military, and a majority of the troops, and Americans as a whole, love this song because it demonstrates American strength and resolve. The point is not war and death and destruction, it's about justice and perseverance. It's about loving this great nation. GREAT SONG!
  • Ben from Nyc, Msallan if you truly believe that...
  • Allan from Glendale, CaYou have to understand that when you live in America, American's are top priority. The same in England, they look out for their own people first, and all other countries. Toby Keith was hurt by the terrorist attacks, and he should feel free to write about it. If people can write hateful lyrics to Americans then why can't Toby Keith vent himself? The problem with American society is that if you scream for the left wing you're not being loud enough and if you whisper for the right wing your being too loud.
  • Kelli from Cedar Rapids, IaThe point is, death and war are not things to be celebrated. American lives are no more valuable than anyone elses. And, yes, I understand that terrorism and the tsunami are different types of disasters...however, the end result- death and destruction- is the same. And if innocent Americans die, is the proper response to kill thousands of innocent people, both in Iraq and Afghanistan?
  • Nathan from Indialantic, FlKelli from NY, Helpless Afghans? 911 a "sad event" that was overblown? The Tsunmai was a act of nature not terrorist.If you don't understand that then you haven't got a clue.
    If Toby Keith is lame then you must be dead from the neck up. I like all types of music not just country and I have grown to admire Toby Keith not for his political opnions but for his ability to write songs, very good ones at that.

  • William from Phoenix, AzToby Keith should have beandip spread on his face with a cement trowel
  • Tayo from Estacada, OrThis song is a perfect example of the ignorance that plagues American society. It's this type of knee-jerk reactionary crap that gives us so much anger and hate. People really need to learn to sit back and learn as much as possible about something and not jump to conclusions. All sides of the political spectrum do this and it's really pathetic. People just need to calm down. This song is also proof that patritotism is one of the worst forms of political correctness.
  • Kelli from Cedar Rapids, IaNo reason to hate him? Well, let's see, he writes songs about taking pleasure in bombing helpless Afghans, he talks smack about anyone who dislikes the president or his policies, and he refuses to consider why America would be a target of hatred in the first place. Besides, 9/11 was a sad event, but its been so overblown, its ridiculous. Other countries have lost way more people with a lot less fuss. (The Tsunmai??)
  • Kyle from Hb, Nyi came to the conclusion that country singers write some good patrioct songs like good bless the usa but this song is even better
  • Sarah from San Antonio, Txwhy dont people like him hes awesome! hes a great singer and hes just showing his respect to 9/11 hes a great guy and theres not reason to hate him
    ~sarah, st cloud mn
  • Sarah from San Antonio, Txwhy dont you guys like toby keith hes awesome! he has a great voice and hes showing his respect for 9/11 hes a great guy most of the time lol
  • Kelli from Cedar Rapids, IaThis song expresses completely why Toby Keith is so lame.
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