Wednesday, May 10, 2006
IS AMERICA GOOD OR WHAT?
Pessimists need not apply...
One of the reasons you don't hear too much good positive news on the cable shows, the network news and (my least favorite) self-important blogs, is because negativity sells. Sensationalism catches the eye. With sex, drugs, political scandals, blow-hards on the left and right, and flying human limbs coming at you in HDTV quality, ...heck who needs good news? Who wants to hear about the good of a Mother Theresa, the men and woman of our military building schools in Iraq, or pro-bono lawyers doing good work for the less fortunate when you can have 4 pandemics-a-gettin', 3 tornadoes-a-destroyin', 2 suicide bombers-a-flyin' and an Illegal in a pear tree (uh... picking them of course). Well, not being one to shy away from ruining the day of the "Hate America" crowds here and abroad, I humbly submit to you my top ten reasons why America Rocks!
(DANGER: continuing this read may give you fuzzy feelings, happy joy-joy smiles and a severe case of optimism. We are not responsible for changes in your perspective or voting habits.)
1. More people want to break INTO America than are trying to jump out.
Even when somebody PROMISES to leave the country should this person or that person get elected,... they still stay!.. amazing.
2. 2 massive hurricanes, 2 wars, and the economy booms. What a country!
I know this is going to get a few comments on the social injustice, the minimum wage, the outsourcing of jobs, the poverty, the sick, the this and that. Reality check. Its called CAPITALISM. It will never be a Gene Roddenberry Utopia. A small percentage of the polulace will still fall through the crack no matter how little the crack is (that should be a rap song...) .
3. Freedom of speech and discourse!
Self-explanatory by the medium you are reading at the moment. The number of countries who enjoy this liberty is not as large as it should be.
4. 230 years old!, a baby in world perspective, and look where we are.
Think about those 1000-year old cultures and countries that look at us in disbelief and envy. There is a reason we are the "great democratic experiment".
5. Can you say Blues, Jazz, Baseball, Basketball, the Automobile, Computers, etc?
This list can be 1000 miles long. The contribution of the American know-how to the planet's well being can't be measured.
6. The BEST health care in the world. Period.
Whether its fair, cheap, available to all is a subject unto itself. Don't believe me? Try getting a appointment to see a Doctor in Canada. Its easier to get your dog cared for than yourself. Where would you like to have YOUR spleen removed... here?... or in Istambul?
7. TV. Over 600 channels of everything from the sublime to the mundane.
In 15 minutes of your time you can surf from Disney cartoons to porn. (sorry, free speech folks!) We may not like everything on the menu, but the menu is robust.
8. Our giving, our non-profits, our help organizations.
Name one country with more world volunteers, more funding for deseases and special causes, more non-profits, more foreign aid.... (and believe me, it hurts me to mention the foreign aid bit..)
9. America the Beautiful (... the fruited plane...)
Valleys, lakes, ocean coasts, marshes, forrests, canyons, deserts, rivers, mountain ranges, 4 seasons, fauna, wildlife, national parks, and (my daughter's favorite) shopping malls.
10. ..... and just the fact that a simple man like me, of humble origins, non-humble view, many faults and un-perfect in life,... can have a forum to say this, right here and right now.
We have "miles to go before we sleep" and can't deminish our faults and mistakes... but lets just take today to celebrate the good of America. There is always tomorrow to complain.