Right now, in this country, the better angels of our nature appear to have fled. I know our country has gone through worse times, but never in my own memory have we ripped children from their parents and put them in cages. It’s gotten to the point where I hardly know how to respond anymore, which I suppose is a sort of victory to those who hate, holler, and rage against those who are a different color. Who are seeking asylum. Who are poor. Who are struggling with addiction. Who are mentally ill. Who don’t fit into the narrow confines of what is acceptable to a small but vocal group.
Compassion and generosity, two humble virtues, seem to be in short supply right now in a country that has become addicted to anger. I’ve seen this anger first hand in Maine, and I have certainly seen it on TV, all the way to the highest office in the land. Where will it lead? When will it end? While anger is a human emotion, left unchecked it can be very destructive. This is true even when the anger is “righteous,” which is why so many revolutions become blood baths.
This is all a preamble to writing about our nation’s birthday, a national holiday and celebrated tomorrow on July 4. We are having a few friends over for Clif’s legendary grilled bread—and other goodies—but neither of us is exactly in a hip, hip, hooray kind of mood.
The lovely lady in New York Harbor, who has welcomed so many, is surely filled with sorrow and shame.
But after all, a birthday is a birthday. So happy birthday, United States. Here’s to better times. May they come soon.