Congratulations to my friends who became citizens in the last few years and chose to participate in this election. One from Armenia, one from Iran, one from Istanbul. The fact that they voted doesn’t matter to me. I could care less if someone votes, in the same way that I don’t care whether you like Rush or scrambled eggs.
It was the excitement in their posts that made me reflect on my own cynicism. At some point when an election is approaching I go through the old, “Screw it. I’m not going bother wasting my time voting. I live in California and I know what the results will be here.” But I end up voting anyway. I’m a glutton for punishment like that. Seeing their excitement today made me reflect on the fact that my grandparents had to flee their homeland, and then my parents got the hell out of the Middle East to come here for a better life. I’ve heard my dad complain about certain things here. I’ve complained. Colin Kaepernick complains.
Having all of this swirl around in my puny little brain, I came to the conclusion that it’s easy for us to argue whether or not this country is great or sucks or somewhere in between. It’s the IDEA of America that brought my parents here and that idea is the most important thing about it. This idea is still in its experimental stages.
We are less than a few hundred years old, and in terms of a country’s age, that puts us right around teen/adolescence. God knows I needed supervision when I was that young! So I think we need to give ourselves a break at times The way my mom gave me a break when she found that bottle of Boone’s Farm Strawberry Hill my closet when I was in high school (It wasn’t mine. It was a friend’s :-/ )
Benjamin Franklin was asked outside the Constitutional Convention by a woman (so the story goes) in 1789 what kind of government they decided on, a monarchy or a republic. He said, “A Republic, if you can keep it.” The “if you can keep it” part says a lot. I hope we can keep it, and I hope it gets better. I’m going to go make my scrambled eggs now and listen to some Rush!