Is America great or is it a lie? Some argue that until we take care of the poor, we cannot become great. America can walk and chew gum at the same time. What’s oxymoronic to me is helping the poor is a Biblical act but the opposition argues against it but claim to be spiritual purists.
I’m amazed at the gall of the Tea Party. First, America didn’t send a message during the recent mid-terms; people didn’t come out and vote. Former Governor Howard Dean had an interesting analysis concerning the Tea Party or Teabaggers as some say. While the term Teabagger is inappropriate I’ll continue to use it interchangeably. When they stop with the racist element, I’ll stop calling them tea baggers. Dean defined the tea baggers as a group of aging white baby boomers, who feel powerless, marginalized, and fearful for their future. Dean suggests there are three tea parties:
1. Racist Fringe Tea Party
2. Dick Armey Corporate Tea Party
3. The real Tea Party in which the vast majority is socially and fiscally conservative even though they try to mask it. If they’re so fiscally responsible why do you elect the same people?
This brings me to the Constitution and how they are always invoking it. The constitution is an old document that neither you nor I signed; it’s antiquated as well as outdated. At least the document can be changed and amended.
Let’s get back to the Constitution or when America was great says the Tea Party. I remember a particular Christian artist who would speak of prayer in schools or the most trouble kids got into was chewing gum in class. What a beautiful yet unrealistic portrait of America. The 50’s is a bygone era that was wrought with racism, Jim Crow and civil unrest. Times have changed and world changed with it. The 60’s came and begin to question the thoughts of leaders. When I speak of the 60’s I’m not thinking of the flower-power love your fellow-man crowd. I’m thinking of groups who were impassioned like The Black Panther Party who used gun rights to the letter, but were banned from practicing their 2nd amendment rights.
Whenever America is questioned then all of sudden we need to reclaim America. What America? Whose America? What exactly are we getting back to, a Constitution that was indifferent to people of color. To get back to the Constitution means to get back to what we had all along.
Alexis de Tocqueville was the first writer to describe America as exceptional. When he saw America he wasn’t envious. He looked at the potential of what it could become. This is our exceptionalism now… two wars, class warfare, a bad economy with no foresight, two parties that can’t agree and one party that’s a front for another party. America the great? But still my America!
America is great because of hypocrisy. Only here can we lie about what we believe then contradict our principles, by doing the opposite. At one point America was exceptional, now the world has caught up. Don’t get me wrong, people from around the world are trying to come here because we offer what some other countries can’t. We use to be the leaders of production and viability then we become opportunists. We still support slavery, just not on our shores. Remember Wal-Mart, the American story. Look at how they have outsourced where the products and goods are being made. Look at that state of the U.S. dollar for example. During Chinese President Hu Jintao recent visit he called the present U.S. dollar-dominated currency system a “product of the past”. It’s not about America being great, it’s about making the landscape fertile for us to remain great. Sooner or later we can become a beacon, a light, again.
James Baldwin, author, thinker, left us with this thought…
“I love America more than any other country in
this world, and, exactly for this reason, I insist on
the right to criticize her perpetually.”