So I woke to today in Manila on my countries birthday, before it’s even it’s birthday (unless you are in Guam), I wrote this.
Happy birthday old friend. I hardly recognize you. I used to be so proud to be yours but lately i find myself hiding it in conversation because frankly, in my opinion, you have lost your way. Short sighted ignorance is now the prevailing wind.
When the evangelicals perverted Christianity to fit within the confines of a political parties agenda I blamed Christianity. Which i know now is silly since the same party pulled off the same feat now with patriotism. A group of people claim that God and the “founding fathers” are on their side. Sometimes in the same sentence.
What a message for people that choose not to think. It doesn’t take much critical thinking to imagine Jesus not identifying very well with the Republican agenda. Any of it. Thomas Jefferson a man who rewrote the new testament to take out all the magic, divinity, and miracles and birthing the separation of church and state, a tenant of our founding. The very reason people came to the new world to begin with, so people could practice or not practice their own religions freely, couldn’t identify with god being forced onto citizens by adding it to our money, the pledge etc in the 1950’s. Spitting in the clear bright eyes of our founding fathers.
A country that protects the 2nd amendment above human life because it’s some god given right to have an arsenal in your spare room that could overthrow some governments.. Forgetting the fact that the change we need is in the name… Amendment
A country that gives healthcare to the rich. Where your chances of dying from anything is directly proportional to your income.
A country of immigrants, which used to be our strength now exposes our greatest weakness and insecurity. Where people now feel empowered to openly discriminate against any number of things people cannot help, intimidate, or lock in internment camps people who’s only fault was seeing this country like the beacon of hope it is meant to be.
To speak against these things makes me unpatriotic in nearly half the countries eyes. Ungodly in as many. Oh, America i hope you find your way. We were a beacon of hope for the whole world. Now in Starbucks it’s easier to say I am from Canada, and when i see an American with an American flag on their shirt i question whether we have anything in common. Whether we are enemies based on values.
I wonder if there was a guy like me a decade before the civil war who felt like i did. Who thought there was still time to pull it together.
Happy Birthday America, make me proud.
As you were….
“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”