You know, I wouldn't necessarily call myself a patriotic person. I did take a trip to Southeast Asia this summer and come home more grateful to be an American than when I left. But as usual the day in and day out of living in this country eroded my enthusiasm.
I am at a loss of what to do. Big farm, big pharm, and big biz continue to shit all over me/us. This does not feel like a country for the people by the people, but more like for the moneymakers by the lobbyists. We pay for politicians to get elected. So they can argue about partisian issues using their constituents as "the reason" for their perspective when I know it has little to do with me and everything to do with who will pay for their re-election campaign. How in the world can someone who doesn't even come close to the average income bracket of an American understand the daily struggles that are significant?
I hear people clamoring for healthcare and campaign reform but even attempts at something new are thwarted. Insurance companies pay for Viagra but don't pay for birth control. Planned Parenthood's budget is cut at a time when people need low-income healthcare more than ever. But Congress is still willing to sponsor NASCAR. Federal funding isn't even used for abortions but the right wing has won the smear campaign that turned Planned Parenthood from an affordable option providing services to women and the underprivileged, into a political hot topic. So women aren't able to afford pregnancy prevention, family planning or pre-natal healthcare. But dudes can still get their dick hard at a reasonable cost.
There are things I celebrate about this country. We have clean water, comfort for some, infrastructure, the right to have a voice, opportunity, freedom to move and challenge and organize. But God forbid that any of those things get in the way of commerce.
Shit, the agricultural/food production industry in this country is making us all sick. I shop at Farmer's markets, grow some stuff, but I still look to our government to say, "No. GMO, pesticides, and caged meat factories is absolutely not in the best interests of the constituency." Our food is pumped with antibiotics and hormones. We don't even test for mad cow. The FDA didn't think we needed to. WHAT?! The F in FDA, is a big 'ole F you!
I don't know what the answer is. I vote. I try and make conscientious buying choices. I'm vocal. But dear lord in heaven I between work and comedy. I don't know where else to find the time.
I believe in the values that founded this country. That all people are created equal that life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness is our right. That we are a great nation that has the ability to move past it's own hatred and do what is just for EVERYONE, to be a country of giving rather than taking. Liberty and Justice and for all. That is what I pray. That the light is stronger than the darkness. That these ideas are moving and surfacing in ways I don't know about, and in the end we will calmly lift each other up.