Today is the 240th year of this country that, if you call yourself an American, no matter where you came from, or what you believe, you can celebrate. That’s America. We take in everyone. The Statue of Liberty once stood as a marker of that very creed. Taking in “huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” What lady Liberty fails to inform immigrants and refugees is that this freedom doesn’t come without judgement or centuries of deeply ingrained prejudice. No this wont be a post about how much America sucks, or how we could be doing so much better, though we really could. No.
As an American, I am glad to live in this country. Freedom is sometimes taken for granted when militia aren’t raiding your home or killing your fellow church members in the square as a public demonstration that your God is weak. We focus in on the Trumps and Budget crisis of the world…the pride parades and legalizations…the ‘not-in-my-back-yard’s’ and the ‘those people just moved in next door.’ I’m not saying some of those problems aren’t legitimate, I’m saying it’s easy to make problems when freedom is given to us without us having to really pay for it. It’s kinda like when I was 18, I drove a white Pontiac Grand Am, but it was really my Dad’s car. I drove it into the ground. Actually, that’s almost accurate. Mainly this happened because I had no ownership over it and thus failed to grasp how to properly treat it. I should have washed it every other week. I should have vacuumed out the interior, given it oil changes, and taken it in for check-up’s every now and then. I should have taken care of it. I should have cared.
Taking something for granted becomes easier when we aren’t reminded of the cost, or when we are so far removed from the price that was paid. Today, instead of raising a glass to ‘a greater America’ or ‘change we can hope for’ or ‘Murica,’ raise a glass to those who gave us this incredible land to make music, write stories, have opinions, worship, not worship, create, earn a hard-days-work, and live free. It’s kind of incredible, and it’s amazingly beautiful.
Happy 4th Everyone.