We’re young compared to many other countries across the globe, but let’s not use that as an excuse to behave badly. We’re still old enough to know better.
We’ve hit a few rough patches in our history, but we’ve always bounced back, stronger for the experience. Now we’re in the midst of one of the roughest patches I can remember in my lifetime and although it’s tempting to thank politicians for governing us to our lowest point, or the media who seems to enjoy dividing us further—much of the blame falls on us for allowing it to happen. No doubt there are countries in far worse shape, but we were blessed with a solid foundation and much more than other countries, yet we’re on the brink of ruining it all.
As we celebrate Independence Day with family and friends, we may want to think about why we celebrate, and then consider how divided we’ve become as a nation. Back in 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote that, “… all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.” Despite the debate that often accompanies discussions about Jefferson, and whom he may or may not have meant when writing about “all men”, we know what is right in our hearts. All human beings are created equal. We may not live equally or act equally, but we are all afforded equality by birthright. It is up to us what we do with it from there.
It’s shameful that two hundred and forty years later, we’re plague with even more by obstacles that divide us, as if we’ve learned nothing along the way. The battle between political parties, for example, is out of control. By larger margins each day, survey results show we don’t trust politicians on either side, yet we do nothing about it. We’ve gone from a country that has worked together in our worst of times—9/11 is an example in my lifetime—to people who believe “I am right and good and you are wrong and evil”, with zero ability to view anything outside of the party’s agenda.
The two pathetic candidates running for president are going to divide us even further, if that is possible. They are both unworthy of the office for ethical or intellectual reasons, and no matter who wins the title—and I believe that’s all it is for both of these egomaniacs—we’ll likely be in even worse shape when America turns 241.
Happy birthday, America. I’m still proud to be your daughter and a citizen, and I want to be positive about your future, but it’s not looking good. Here’s hoping we find our way back to being a united front.