The False Promise
A stream of consciousness essay about my opinion of america and american politics.
The United States of America is a country that, in some ways, is more dedicated to proving that it is great than actually working to become so.
From an incredibly young age, american students are taught that america is the best country in the world, both by schools, and in many cases by their parents. We are told that America is the country of freedom, where anyone can be anything, and all people are treated equally. This is the basic knowledge that most of us bring with us as we continue through our schooling years. When your foundation is that America is the best, you will be faced with a choice when presented with facts to the contrary. You can change your perception of america, or rationalize the past and present that reflects poorly on it. Unfortunately, many institutions and individuals have chosen to present the latter option as the default, or even the only option. Schools across america limit their teaching of america's less flattering aspects, pushing the narrative that america is the best country. I have been lucky enough that my school has presented a more full picture of america than many, though it still has not been the complete story. Because I have had a more balanced view, though the scale is still tipped heavily, I have been able to form my own opinion about my country. Through both classes and my own research, I have come to the opinion that america is not the best country in the world, and attempts to make it better are often halted by individuals or groups that benefit from the very things that i would argue make our country worse. These are the people that seek to limit the teaching of negative history, the people who don't want americans to think about slavery, or the genocide of the natives, or the fact that women make less money then men, or any of the countless atrocities committed by the american government. These are the politicians, business owners, celebrities, and private citizens who want america to stay stagnated in this period on the verge of real progress, because a change to the status quo threatens their positions. The politicians might not get reelected if voting rights are fair and balanced, the multi-millionaires might not be as unbelievably rich if they are taxed to provide basic necessities to those in need. I have seen my friends, people i love, struggle and suffer because the country is not allowed to progress forward into an age of equality. Their parents have told them they are inferior or wrong just because of their gender identity or sexuality. In the country of freedom, where anyone can be anything, gay marriage is only 7 years old, and discrimination based on Sexual orientation or Gender identity is still not banned on a federal level. I am watching as my rights are being limited across the country, with laws passing that forbid the teaching of LGBTQ topics in schools, and it hurts, knowing that we are close to real progress for the country, but being halted by a loud minority who are pushing us backward. the Black Lives Matter movement is one of the longest sustained protest in American history, and yet it achieved so little legislative change. No real problem was addressed by the government, which gave more funding to hire more police officers. Our nation, which promises it's children that they can be whatever they want, routinely discriminates, imprisons, and murders it's citizens for things that they cannot control. The truth is you can be anything you want in this country, as long as you were born a wealthy, white, cis-gender, heterosexual man. My american Creed is reality, seeing what is happening in this country, and knowing that any attempt to change it is going to be hindered by wealthy, bigoted people with much more power than me.