My wife loves me. She sees good in me. She is loyal to me. I am grateful for that.
My wife is not delusional. She sees problems in me. She challenges me. I am grateful for that.
I am American. It is a land that I love. I can love my homeland without being delusional. I am grateful for that.
I love American courage.
We have a heritage of challenging the status quo, of standing up for what is right. America has done that over and over; often against standing up to America’s own faults and failures. I love freedom from stubborn insistence to nostalgic obligations. That courage keeps hope alive.
I love American ideals of unity in diversity.
Our founding fathers centered on the belief that our rights come from our Creator and not from this or that group’s interpretation of the Creator. Our people gave rights to the government, not the other way around. That is hard to remember.
People like stability. When the government and laws favor us we tend to want it to stay that way. When others claim inalienable rights we can become stubborn. We forget that our Ideal was the freedom to exercise one’s rights to try and be right. Freedom to interpret what is right means that many of us will often be wrong.
This is not a failure of our system, this is the essence of our system. We are not stabilized by rigid traditionalism, one of the very things European ancestors fled in coming to America. Allowing diverse ideas and ways of living to play out gives us dynamism. Like riding a bike, un-panicked counterbalancing movements provide stability.
I am an American in a world that I love.
I can love America as one land among many. America has a high degree of freedom, but it never has had unlimited freedom. That is how it is in most countries in the world today. I have spent some painful time in more than one brutal dictatorship; there are too many of those in the world. I have also visited every continent (except Antarctica) and found various degrees of freedom in every one of them. America is a land I love. So is the UK, and Spain, and Thailand, just to name a few.
I am grateful for the good I see in the world and the opportunity to foster that good.
I am grateful for the opportunity to stand up against the bad in the world alongside others.
I am grateful for America, a land with both opportunities; my home, sweet, home.