Love letter to America

Are you in an endless stream of “no, no, no!” these days when you think about America?  I offer you my “yes, I love.” It is Valentine’s Day tomorrow.

I welcome your reply.

I love that in America, my family got a quality public education. My paternal grandparents learned English here in public school. My mother and her siblings did, too. My brother has a Ph.D. from a public university. Most of my nieces and nephews and I completed our undergrad work at public universities.

I love that in America, my grandfather, father, brother, and I have all had union jobs. We did not risk being fired, beaten up, or shot at for joining those unions.

I love that in America, I can get medical care when I needed it. This includes quality gynecological services and birth control. Throughout my reproductive age, abortion was a safe and legal procedure.

I love that in America, I have nearly always had access to clean drinking water, regulated food quality, electricity, home heating, internet, and phone service. Public utility rules have contributed to the building of these infrastructures, which work much more often than not.

I love that in America, there is funding for public health — such as epidemic prevention and emergency management – as well as pure research at the National Institute of Health.

I love that in America, if my house was on fire, there are people ready put it out. They will come, no matter what race or ethnicity I am.

I love that there are public green spaces in nearly every city and public parks in many towns. I have spent days in State and National parks where trails have been created and maintained for the safety of hikers and campers.

I don’t love that I have to pay taxes to sustain some of these things. But, I take that responsibility as a member of this democracy.

I love that in America, I have never been asked to show my ID on the street to justify my right to be there.

I love that in America, no one will arrest me for writing this blog.

There are other countries in the world where I could live as well as I live here. But I would succeed there based on having the benefit of good food and water, safe housing, and public education here in America.

Some of these benefits of American society are not available to all people living in America. Some of the things I love will not be available to the next generation, no matter how hard I try to sustain them. I don’t run the world. But that won’t stop me from trying to hold onto the best parts of what I have enjoyed and pushing to get everyone here the same advantages.

What do you love about America?

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