There was once a great nation called The United States of America, where people were proud to be American. It was a country of diverse cultures and communities that often kept their distance from each other, fought with each other, bickered…
…but in crisis, we came together.
We fought for each other.
We shared the burdens and sacrificed in time of conflict, in wars, and floods, and hurricanes, and when people used planes filled with people as missiles.
We aren’t that anymore.
We are now a country of mostly sane people, mostly smart people, having to reshape our lives, having to make room for the freedom of speech for quack medicine, and conspiracy theory. We have to make room for racism, and sexism. We have all become a little more cynical and a little less forgiving because we had to.
We had to protect ourselves from all the lies, and from the people who believe them.
Maybe, someday we can begin again to aspire to be the America we were all taught about in Elementary School, because ultimately this countries greatness is not in its past.
It is in what we aspire to be.
We’re a country of strivers, dreamers, people always looking at the beacon on the hill and trying to inch toward it. Knowing that if we don’t reach the light, maybe our kids will.
Hopefully, we will all get through this alive and be ready to do the hard work that will get us back on course.
…and to be able to find the grace not to offer a fucking brick in the teeth to the people, our fellow Americans, who sneered and cavorted while people’s parents died.
People’s children died.
…and our country teetered on the brink of its demise while they capered and danced, and made our flag the icon of racists across social media.
Hopefully, in our future, we will remember and honor the people and their small sacrifices and large battles they had to fight to keep us safe.
From the doctors and nurses, lacking PPE, who fought to keep us alive, to the folks working in the grocery stores and delivery services who made sure we didn’t starve,
to the folks at the liquor store who made sure the alcoholics among us didn’t slip into detox and wind up in the hospital, to the folks tearing up bed sheets and table-cloths and any spare piece of fabric we were saving for something special, and sewing late into the night, unpaid, using our money to buy materials and supplies, to make sure care-givers, and drivers and other people who just didn’t have the money for PPE would have, at minimal, a mask to protect them from everyone else’s snot and spit, and those who thought up that idea, organized us, and helped us out when our machines jammed up, or when elastics ran low or we ran out of thread.
Hopefully, somewhere, once this is over, we’ll be able to move forward.
We don’t need to forgive.
Forgiveness is not owed, and, frankly, asking for it and expecting it to be granted is an unrealistic expectation. We are not obligated to be kind or generous to people who actively worked to kill us.
We won’t be forgetting, either.
I would say, to anyone who can’t understand this, or supported the madness, be grateful that people are willing to move forward and may demand justice, since you really don’t want to see what it looks like if we start demanding revenge.