Wednesday, July 04, 2018

Freedom of choice

It's a quiet day; having had yesterday off as well has been incredibly relaxing and wonderful.

I do not hide the fact that I am a very patriotic American; I am proud of this country; proud to have been born and raised here - proud and fortunate.  So when I hear people - friends, especially - disparage the country overall, it angers me.  "Privilege" has become a word quite often mis-assigned and yet the hypocrisy of many is just that.  Those who fling accusations of "privilege" on certain groups or individuals are usually those who come from such a background.  It's become one of the focal buzzwords of the political forum, along with "Nazi" (completely misappropriated because it's easy to toss out via laziness), etc.  Privilege very often is equated with arrogance - and there is no doubt in my mind that those who spew the word are as arrogant, self-serving and smugly self-righteous as they are affluent.  These are people who can sit upon their hilltop homes and pretend to "care" about "others" while keeping a very safe distance from reality and it's become tiresome bullshit, frankly.  So I look in the mirror and I don't - won't - pretend; I am a proud American patriot who doesn't disparage, but rather embraces the privilege of what being an American means.

From the time I was able to vote at the age of 18, which is now 35 years ago, I had been a card-carrying, dyed-in-the-wool Democrat.  I believed in what the party platform stood for and although I had never been a "cheerleader", I was always quietly active in whatever way I could be.  No more.  After seeing what the Party itself has either splintered into or kowtowed to, with this perverse, near-sociopathic new "alt-left", I finally went to the New York City Board of Elections and re-worked my registration so that I no longer have a party affiliation.  When you allow platforms that single out specific groups or religions as targets of their very focused ire but push agendas that don't have any place in general society - since it's on behalf of a very small special interest group - you've worn out your welcome to me.  But yet, I celebrate that notion because, as an American, I have the freedom and birthright of that choice.  And I vote, regardless.  I have never, from the first time I could vote, shirked my responsibility in doing my job as an American citizen; I am at the polling station as early as possible.  Yet, those who couldn't even be bothered to vote, either physically or by mail, are trying to dictate and force policy to shape the future direction of this nation?  I don't think so.

So on this magnificent holiday, Independence Day, I will, indeed, raise a glass to honor our flag; toast our incredible soldiers who deserve more respect than anyone ever seems to give them, as well as our police forces, who do a thankless job and keep us safe and say "thank God I am an American". 

Celebrate the easiest thing of all - being who we are and where we are.  God bless America.  Yes.