Dear America, We Need To Start Seeing Other People

Posted by on August 21, 2012 in Featured, Thoughts | 13 comments

Image: Jasper Johns “Flag” via Wikipedia

Dear America,

Let me say in this letter, first and foremost, that I love you. The USA is a wonderful country, with landscapes and people unlike any in the world. You have a great sense of pride, whether it be from achievements, from establishments of social justices, or fighting rightly for the freedoms of others. You hold your head high and say to the rest of the world “Look at me, I am worthy.” What you were once was a role model for other countries worldwide, a beacon of hope and prosperity, and a stalwart of justice. You should be proud.

I love you because you are my birthplace, the place I grew up in for my very early years, the place that spawned my brother, my parents, my grandparents and all my family as far as can be remembered and beyond. I took my first steps on your soil, uttered my first word in your air, ate my first meal from your spoils, and started my education on how to be human within your institutions. I hold you dearly in my heart for without you I could not exist. For this I owe you a debt of gratitude.

I love you, because within your shores you contain some of my heroes, people who I look up to as mentors and contemporaries, and you have spawned great thinkers, great activists, and great leaders. You created great things from little, and you still continue to achieve. For this, I still hold you in high esteem.

But something has changed between us.

While you remain the home to many I love, and are still brave and proud, you’ve fallen prey to a sickness. This is not a physical illness, nor is it a forced disability. It’s a sickness in your politics, and in the people who wish to rule over you. These people, though not in power yet, wish to impose a stupidity on the masses, based in lies, untruths and deceit. These people have managed to take the anger that the masses feel and direct it upon others within the country. The words “Justice for all”, now a mere platitude, are bandied about by people who wish to see “privilege for the few”. With a bible in one hand, a handgun in the other, and with a voice louder than all the others, these people wave the stars and stripes, YOUR stars and stripes, and claim to know whats best for you, while all the time seeking to take away justices and liberties that were bestowed upon them by their forefathers. Control over women and their reproductive organs, restricting rights to same-sex-attracted people, and installing biblical fallacies as part of public education; these are the only words I hear you say anymore. These people seek to destroy everything that you were built upon. This is your sickness.

You never tell me you love me. You never stand up for the rights of the downtrodden anymore. Your actions are transparent to me, yet you dress it all up as your “God given destiny”. It seems to me that you’ve fallen into a bad crowd. Even you, who it seems I’ve lost the fight to keep, should see that now. This makes me very sad indeed.

I cannot stand by and watch you get sicker by the day.

I hope that someday the voices of those of your people who truly stand up for human decency, as denoted by nothing but being human, can be heard above the cacophony of the “God-willed” and the biblically driven tyrants. I hope that one day you can look upon this period of your life with shame, but can move forward to become the place you always promised you would be.

I know I am distanced from you now. Although we haven’t seen each other for over 20 years, my heart is still with you, on your shores. But until that day, the day you realise that you are not well, I will start seeing other countries. You really need some help, and I can’t help you until you admit that you need help.

Signed

Martin S Pribble

PS: You can keep the Don McLean CD I gave you. I never really liked it anyhow.

NOTE: Images were sourced from the internet, I take no responsibility for the accuracy of the quotes, they are simply there for illustration of a point.

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13 Comments

  1. Beautiful. I feel the same way myself, it’s ironic that the political right has stolen the language of patriotic righteousness and in so doing, corrupted it. It makes me both angry and frightened since my own continued long-term health and personal well-being hinges on the outcome of this election season.

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  2. Well said. There is still a wide group of people in America who uphold the rights of freedom and justice, they simply need a better voice. Most of all those who are ignorant by choice and opt to stick their heads on the sand need to look around and see what’s happening and say NO, this isn’t what’s it’s supposed to be like. 

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  3. Is the <slow clap> played? Because I really want to stand up and give you a <slow clap> while humming the The Star-Spangled Banner. 

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  4. The Slow Clap  http://ow.ly/d6U1a

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  5. Bravo! Although I am a proud and patriotic Canadian, I have, what I consider, a natural affection for my “sister” nation to the south. The “cancer” that I’ve seen grow and metastasize in that country since 2000 (and even before that) makes me, literally, nauseated. It is becoming more and more apparent that the fanatics that flew commercial airliners into large buildings in the continental US on September 11, 2001 are alive and well in the Republican Party. Those psychotic individuals from 11 years ago, hated women too… to the point of extreme oppression and severe abuse. I can say only this, I will fight, even if it kills me, to maintain my inate HUMAN RIGHTS and the rights of my daughter, granddaughter, neices, sister, mother and friends. This conservative WAR ON WOMEN is REAL and it HAS GOT TO STOP! They’re barking up the wrong tree and we women bite!

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  6. Right on, Marty. Time for an intervention! And that would be A campaign finance reform amendment. Maybe that’ll happen. Being that I can still vote I will do all I can to keep the cray-cray at bay in November.

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  7. Well said Martin.  As an American I could not agree with you more.  The voices of the Religious Right are drowning out all other voices.  It is one of the things that prompted me to start my blog this past January.  One of the saddest facts, at least to me, is that I feel that many of my fellow citizens do not even know what is happening.  I have friends who are apathetic atheists, friends who are Catholic (but haven’t been to church in 20 years) and they vote Republican unaware (at least until I tell them) about the GOP’s relationship with the Religious Right. 
     
    Something needs to change in this country, but I fear that change will be slow.  Those of us who criticize the religion inherent on the political right these days are often marginalized.  None the less, we are growing and becoming more vocal.  It may be a while before we can turn back the tide of the Religious Right, but this November will be a big test–the results are much more important than many of my fellow citizens realize I fear.

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  8. How well this is put and how well it echoes my own feelings and situation.  I have lived out of the USA for almost ten years now and I doubt if I will ever go back.  The unchecked excesses of the religious reich and the neo-cons (same thing?) have ensured that the USA is no longer a free country.  
     
    Look at the enormous waste of time and resources of the TSA (Terminally Stupid Administration).  Not one thing they are doing or could do would deter a genuine terrorist for a minute.  All they are really accomplishing is to accustom Americans to the idea that they are no longer a free country.  
     
    I have a famous quotation that shows how this works:
     
    “Naturally, the common people don’t want war, but after all, it is the leaders of a country who determine policy.  It is always a simple matter to drag the people along whether it is a democracy, a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship.  Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders.  
     
    This is easy.  All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger.  It works the same in every country.”
     
    Hermann Goering  Hitler’s Reich-Marshall at the Nuremberg trials after WW II
     
    This technique works equally well to remove freedoms from a country.
     

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    • @James Smith João Pessoa, Brazil

      Brilliant response! Bravo! And extremely accurate!

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      •  @AtlanticCanuck  @James Thank you for the kind words.  I only say what I feel and what I am confident is true.

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    • @James Smith João Pessoa, Brazil

      Brilliant response! Bravo! And extremely accurate!

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  9. well written I as a canadian have seen all that is happening and wonder why you as a country cannot see what the rest of the world sees. when a country is so afraid of its own shadow that they must arm themselves to the teeth and lock their doors to their neighbours it saddens me. what was a great nation is laughed at by the rest of the world with a sorry head shake as we see what is true, due to the fact that we are not bombarded with the filth you call news to give you a true sense of what is going on within your own walls. nobody would ever rail against the corporate military machine that rules over the poor and (politicaly) uneducated people of a  once proud nation. fore when all is said and done the people that are being oppressed are the people that must go to war to protect the corrupt.

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    •  @tominater   Well done.  Living in South America, I get news from the USA, CNN, Fox, ABC, and others.  IN addition, I get O Globo, BBC, Deutche Welle, and many others.  The difference between these and the US news is often striking.  Well, except for BBC which is lock step with the USA on all issues.  
       
      Yes, people here in Brazil often smile and shake their heads at the insanity of Americans.

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