Now I’m sure I will get some hate for this, but I needed to get this off my chest.
Last week I went to a rodeo, which was full of flag waving and speeches about the greatness of the USA and freedom. We are not free or great and by continuing to deny the problems with our country it will only get worse.
I am not proud to be an American, but I want to be.
How can we call ourselves free when we imprison more people than any other nation? Instead of looking for the reasons behind such a high incarceration rate all we do is make tougher laws and build more prisons. We let private corporation take over the incarceration of human beings and use them for cheap labor. It is slavery in the 21st century, so how can we call ourselves free when we continue to enslave the poorest among us?
Politicians constantly call for tougher immigration laws, while corporations continue to ship jobs oversees. Immigrants are not stealing our jobs, they are working jobs that no one else want. How is this great? We continue to exploit undocumented workers doing jobs Americans don’t want while blaming them for our unemployment. Yet, we still defend the large companies that are the actual reason for our poor economy. Free-market doesn’t work, trickle down doesn’t work. All you have to do is look at our own history or Canada to see this. The Canadian economy was not as severely impacted and recovered faster than ours because they had stricter government regulation in place on their banks. Are we so blind that we can’t see what is broken and work to fix it?
I can’t be proud of this country until we wake up and realize everything that is wrong with it and fix it. We have no issue spending billions and trillions of dollars on “defense”, but health care and education spending is a huge debate. Why is killing people that would have never been a threat to us on American soil so accepted when caring for the sick and educating our youth is considered secondary? Education spending should never be cut, how can out country grow if our children don’t have access to good education? How does that make us great? It doesn’t. We are ranked 32 in Math and 17 in Reading, this isn’t greatness.
Is it free if we are enslaved by debt? Forced to take on multiple jobs just to pay off medical and educational loans is not freedom. To get a halfway decent job in this country requires an education and a good education will put you far into debt. We then are so desperate for work we take what ever job we can, unable to quite because we need that job, the pay, and insurance it provides. Because without insurance should you become ill you will be unable to afford the treatment you need. Even with insurance you may still end up with more medical bills than you can’t afford. This is not freedom.
Why is it wrong for everyone to have access to health care? Does it make me less of a person if I don’t make enough money to afford my care? Why is it wrong for the rich to pay a little more than those that don’t have enough? My dad works harder than anyone I know, is he less deserving than someone who makes 10x his salary?
Mahatma Ghandi said, “A nation’s greatness is measured by how it treats its weakest members.”
So what does it say about our nation when we demonize the poor and the weak - blaming them for their own problems while ignoring the fact that in American it is nearly impossible to pull oneself out of poverty? If you are white and middle class in America the skies the limit, but if you are a poor minority you are likely to remain that way of no fault of your own. The American Dream is dead. If you are poor in this country you are likely to remain poor. Social mobility in America is stagnate, especially for the poorest of our society and non-whites. We are a country of inequality.
We need to wake up. No more flag waving and shouts of America the Great. We are no longer the greatest nation in the world, but a nation in decline and denying this is not going to make anything better. Those of us who see the problems with America need to stand up and give voice to them. We need to be louder than the corporate controlled media, louder than the corrupt politicians, and louder than the many misinformed American people who are only guilty of listening to the wrong people and not thinking for themselves.
Some may say I shouldn’t complain, that there are worse places I could have been born, and as a woman that is true. I could have been born someplace in the middle east where woman’s rights are nearly non-existent, but I also could have been born someplace better. I don’t have paid maternity leave and only within the past month, with the affordable care act, am I guaranteed that I won’t be denied health insurance just for being a woman.
When my daughter is older I want her to be able to go to college without putting herself into massive debt. I want my daughter to be free and unafraid to marry whoever she wants. I never want my daughter to hold off on going to the doctors because she is afraid of how much it’s going to cost her. I want my daughter to live in a country she can be proud of.
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- leekfixer said: Excellent post. I totally agree with everything you say. Thanks for putting this out there.
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- rocknrolldomesticity said: yesssssssss!!!!!
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