Thursday, November 10, 2016

I Love America Day

I spent a majority of yesterday just grieving.  Grieving the fact that we have elected Donald Trump as our next president and also grieving the fact that so many of my fellow Americans would willingly vote for someone so blatantly racist, homophobic, and misogynistic.  The Bible tells us to "love one another" and yet conservative Christians willingly voted for - and BOASTED of said voting for - a candidate who has built his platform upon hating our fellow man.  I grieve for my all those who are now feeling real, legitimate fear: the LGBT community, Muslims, Latinx, women of any color, those who cannot afford healthcare without ACA.  I grieve for all of them and I fear for all of them.

Today is my kids' school's "I Love America" day.  It's a big deal and it's been hyped up since the beginning of the school year.  The irony of such a day wasn't lost on me in the midst of my grieving.  If I'm being completely honest, I wasn't feeling a whole lot of love for my country yesterday.  It was a mix of other emotions.

A little angry.

But I had to remind myself of something.

Over the past couple months in our home, we've completely outlawed the phrases "you hate me" or "you don't love me."  If a child says either one while they're getting in trouble then the punishment will be larger.  Why?  Because you can be angry with someone and still love them.

That's how I choose to feel about my country today.

I'm angry at the Democratic party for giving us a candidate so thoroughly crooked and unlikeable.  I'm angry at the Republican party for volleying back with the most disgusting, vile, and inexperienced candidate in history.  I'm angry at my fellow Americans who supported Trump.  I'm angry at conservative Christians who overlooked extremely un-Christlike behavior and voted for Donald Trump because he told them he was pro-life.  I'm angry that I can't tell my girls that yes, being more qualified totally means you'll get the job over a man.  Yeah, mama ain't happy today.

But I still dressed my kids up in their red, white, and blue.  My J will proudly be marching in the parade with members of his class.  If we go to the University of Memphis football game this weekend, I'll stand and put my hand over my heart for the national anthem.  When the Fourth of July rolls around, I'll eat all the barbecue and drink all the beer and get all the tears in my eyes while watching fireworks. 

I'm so, so fearful of the next four years.  I'm embarrassed at what my fellow Americans have done.  I'm mad as hell at my country.  But I still love it.

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