A Moment of Truth

This is a momentous night for our nation. A full moon. Unsettled thoughts after tonight’s shocking action by the President. Firing the Director of the FBI! Unprecedented! And Unpresidential.  What revelations will the new day bring?

Tonight our Democracy is fighting for her life. If she survives this crisis, there are fundamental changes that will need to be made. This meddling by the Russians and probable collusion by one or more members of the current administration is a grievous insult right to our core. It strikes at our fundamental values of life, liberty equality, and justice for all. 

If she doesn’t survive, it will be because the elegant system of checks and balances that has worked for 228 years will have finally succumbed, collapsed under the weight of partisanship. (A weight the structure was never built to support – there is no mention of political parties in the Constitution)

I have felt this peculiar tension before, sitting between the isolettes of my twins in the NICU before they were big enough for me to hold. As if by my watching and waiting, through sheer force of will I can prevent anything worse from happening. 

Bad news: I can’t. Not then and not now. 

And I know I need to go to bed and make an attempt at sleep soon. 

But first let me unravel a bit more of this. 

He said he wanted to make America “Great Again.” That may well come to pass, but probably not the way his followers envision. Instead, if he does succeed at this slogan it will be after the fact and accidental. Also much more like the way Anakin Skywalker brought “balance to the Force” than any return to some mythical great American past. 

So. 

Leave off the again. Let’s listen. What would a truly great America look and sound like?

An America, a United States that rose to the challenge of those who have called to her greatness over the years, an America that lives out the fulfillment of her creed. And expands upon it.

An America that recognizes that ALL people are created equal. Where one person equals one vote. And an America that recognizes that no one’s achievements are theirs alone. We all stand on the shoulders of those who have come before. An America that can honor and learn from the past but also not be condemned to repeat it. 

An America that fosters community, compassion and courage.  

An America that honors the sanctity of the land and our obligation to protect and preserve it. Not to plunder it for our own economic gains. 

An America where we recognize the state as having an active role to play in protecting and fostering the full implementation of the inalienable rights we all are born with. Whether it is healthcare for all, education policy, a universal minimum income or consistent treatment across state lines, some things cannot be left to the invisible hand of the market     

No. 

For America to become truly great, we need to learn how to reach out to one another with our real flawed human hands, across the issues that divide us. 

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