Proud (?) American

Posted by Ali A. Michigan

How it is to live under the Red, White and Blue

I am a proud American.

I might not have been born here. I might have been raised somewhere else. I might sound and look slightly different. But I know that I am as proud of an american as anyone else. I can achieve anything that I want because this is America. I want the better for my country, this country. Even when my family tells me that I will always be an Iraqi, I live for the U.S. I can be whoever I want to be as long as society lets me in the land of red, white, and blue.

And here I am, a proud American.

So what if people called me a terrorist, degrading and dehumanizing the effort my parents put in to bringing us here. So what if the people who lived here, the people who fought hard to get where they are, the people whose ancestors built this country on their lashed backs are discriminated against as if there is not a law that rules over the country. So what if our government leaves us to the dogs for their own gain, because finishing the 9th hole on their private golf course is more important than people drowning both from hurricanes and the fear instilled by the ones who are meant to dispel it.

Am I a proud American?

Here I am in the land of those free from law because their money is the God we are indivisible under. The home of the brave that shoot innocent kids on the street because those kids look different. The country where the powerful White lets the cowardly Blue shed Red on our streets. Where the fifty stars are falling, leaving stripes of red in their wake. Oh say can you see? That the man kneeling for equal rights and his free speech is labeled as a traitor? The nuclear missiles we let glare in the countries we fear. The bombs bursting in the air of a poor middle-eastern country that does not want a fight? Every man and woman are born equal, we fight for equal, and yet somehow we are equally resisted out of our human rights! America I am speaking directly to you - Every man woman and child, every worker, veteran, and student. We are change!

Oh say, you can’t see!

Because an eye for an eye made the world blind!

Or say you won’t see!

For instead of turning the other cheek we turn our blind eyes to our peoples’ suffering!

Because we are American.

But we can be better. Our hope is unconquered. Our young are driven, this country’s children want change,

They will get change.

Here I stand, and wonder:

Am I an American?

...

No.

I am tired.

I am tired of the thought that we are alone. I am sick from the virus of oppression. I am tired of seeing my brothers and sisters full heartedly believe that they are also alone. So while our individuality is unique, it is much like a single raindrop faltering onto the side of a mountain, it is nigh powerless alone. Yet yield the power of the crowd, when we come together we become the storm that erodes those mountains, the same storms that create the landslides of change that clash onto the walls of agony and despair.

I am not just an American. No. I am America. And I. Am. Disappointed.

In you, brothers, and sisters.

For you, my brothers and sisters, you too are America.

We are America. Do not believe the lie that you are only an individual, do not let yourself be oppressed, for our strength comes from the bond that forms from the belief that we are one. And I am bereaved to say that, America, we have betrayed ourselves. America has betrayed itself.

No more complaining that nothing is being done to change our situation. We aren’t doing anything to change it. No more desensitization to our issues. No more not caring about a problem until it affects us directly.

Have we not had enough losses? If not, then how many more? How many more fathers and mothers and sons and daughters must we lose to mindless violence? How many more brothers must we lose to corrupt police? How many more sons, and daughters must we throw down into the barrel of a gun, that feeding tube of the NRA? How about instead of separating innocent families at the border because of potential danger we actually focus on the real terrorists who have the audacity to disguise themselves as our citizens? And the terrorists that defend them in court? And the terrorists that believe more guns are the answer to guns?

How much more are we going to give to violence?!

We gave up our streets!

We gave up our police!

We gave up our institutions of knowledge!

Well I say our vein has run dry - Because everything we give up we let it die in vain.

So pick yourselves up from the dirt, raise your head above the depression, look at the rubble and realize what you can do.

We are the change. That’s. Long. overdue.

Published on Jul 18, 2018
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