Thursday, November 09, 2006

Nationalism Shmashionalism

To all those who are over exuberant about how they praise the United States for being so great, I have some bones to pick with you.

First, I want to say, those of us who criticize, stating what we believe is wrong here, does not mean we hate our country. Speaking for myself, I want to make this a better country. The first step in solving a problem is to recognize THAT THERE IS ONE! Pride taken too far only blinds us to what is obvious to those looking at the issues from a global and ideal perspective.

I believe that a good way to determine the greatness of a country is twofold; determine the quality of life for all its citizens and take a look how the most vulnerable in society are treated and cared for.

Cities, here in the United States, do not make the list of the top 28 cities with the highest quality of life*. They are exclusively in Western Europe, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. The murder rate alone here is appalling with it being nearly 6 times the murders per capita than Norway's rate. How about those huge, growing acreages of decaying, urban ghettos filled with daily murders, poverty, theft, violence and desperation; that few want to even talk about?

I would even argue that with all the non-assimilated immigrants currently living here, the continuously vanishing middle class, and the political gridlock in Washington, D.C. , that we are not truly "united", but certainly divided.
How cruel and despicable is it also for those in congress, who are well off, to vote for themselves , regular pay raises, while refusing to raise the minimum wage significantly for, roughly, the last 10 years.

I guess it is OK to subsidize privileged homeowners, wealthy senior citizens, and hand out corporate welfare, but tax dollars to help those who struggle to make a living is just out of the question. So, we allow the most vulnerable to be oppressed, and we expect no backlash?

The backlash is the high crime and lower quality of life that results when making a profit takes precedence over making a community.

*information found at website: under city rankings

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