17 Years Ago: Before and til Now
Every once in a while, I write a blog/essay. Those of you who haven't known me a while may only see my vain selfies, and conflicting political memes that show no one what I actually believe in, but every once in a while I'll write it out during a time that I see as difficult or hard. Just about every year I write on 9-11.
I dont care too much about politics, I never really have. I know that they are important and that they are the backbone of our society, but I believe that is where we made a mistake as a country. You see, back in the days where the oldest men were in their forties and the men running the colonies were in their 20s and 30s, the ones being governed were the ones making the laws... I know times have changed, and I know that with age comes wisdom, but I also know that some of the best wisdom comes from new brains.
The Declaration Of Independence is, in my opinion, one of the greatest pieces of American literature ever written, however, it is often considered to be obsolete because it "is just a declaration of war, nothing more." But I feel like even the most obsolete objects are important and have their place in the world. That being said, I believe that it is important to revisit the mindset of the United States during the time in which we were at our most united--
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness"
Since I know most wont read that, I'll paraphrase-- "we all deserve to live, be free, and be able to chase our dreams. Our government is there to help us accomplish these rights, and have been given the power, by us, the nobody's, to do so. And IF THEY OVERSTEP AND STOP ALLOWING OUR ACCESS TO THESE RIGHTS, IT IS OUR JOB TO REMOVE THEM ALL AND CREATE A NEW GOVERNMENT THAT WILL DO WHAT IT WAS CREATED TO DO"
Sounds hostile, doesn't it? But it comes from a very hurt nation of people who were abused by their government for having different beliefs. They united, fought their oppressors and created a nation.
There have been many times in our nation's history in which we broke out in hatred amongst eachother, several wars between the white man and the natives, the Texans and the Mexicans, the north and the south. And many of those have gruesome and disturbing endings with little to no silver lining. The Civil War was the most damaging and influential wars fought on American soil, and from it we gained unity once again through the loss of 1,264,000 men (double the number of American men in all the other wars combined).
Lincoln gave one of the most famous speeches in our great history at the dedication of the Gettysburg Cemetery, and if you dont read anything else in this essay, read and understand this,
"It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us ... that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion ... that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain ... that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom ... and that government of the people ... by the people ... for the people ... shall not perish from this earth." (Gettysburg Address, Thursday November 19,1863)
We could discuss the Civil Rights Act, or Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., but y'all know about that (I'll probably write about it another day).
Fast forward to September 11, 2001.
I was in first grade, do you remember the day? If you're my age, you wouldnt have understood what was happening, I know we didnt go to school, I know my daddy was upset, he stood up and stood about 2 feet from the TV. But I didn't understand. Bombs go off all over the world, all the time, it seems. But this is an event that affects our country, even today. Not because a few buildings got hit or some people got killed, but because those were Our buildings, with Our people. It sounds selfish and mean but humans only really feel that which is closest to us, what is real to us. The media and TV and movies desensitize us to what happens everywhere else but when it is here, on our land, we feel it. We felt the heartbreak of the thousands of people who grieved that day and continue to grieve today. Thousands turned into millions. Songs were written, movies were directed, and people talked to eachother in ways that we havent really done since.
So, if thousands have died over seas fighting this war against others who wish to harm our people, why the fuck are we so God damned angry that a single man is taking a knee to get your attention drawn to the people on our land hurting our people. And why are yall burning shit that you have already paid for. Kapp's protest had gained a whole nation of attention, funded millions in charities, and is attempting to draw everyone's attention back home. What the fuck is your protest doing? NFL sales and pay went up. Nike sales went up. And people are still dying in foreign countries, and Americans are still fucking dying here. What are your hate-filled protests accomplishing? Because we sure as fuck arent being the United States that we want the rest of the world to see us as right now.
By: Audrey Winn