Thursday, April 22, 2010

Enough is enough...

This was written by my dear friend, Kate Ruef... she took the words right out of my mouth...
I have about had it with the Obama bashing. Give the man a break. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and Obama can’t repair the damage of his predecessors in one year. He probably won’t be able to fix it all in his entire term. Did I say probably? He won’t. Period. This country is a mess, and it has been piling up for a long time.

You’re angry? Fine. Direct it toward the people who deserve it. Contact your congressmen and representatives. Contact the elected officials in your states, cities, and towns. Odds are they have been in office a lot longer than the president has. While you’re at it, brush up on your American government. The president only has so much power. He can suggest. He can manipulate, threaten a veto, and cajole. But he can’t make the laws by himself. You want to be angry? Be angry at the lawmakers who chose not to vote about healthcare reform – or any other issue – because they didn’t want to make anyone mad.

You’re afraid? Join the club! We’re all afraid, and probably none of us more than the man sitting in the Oval Office right now. If we make a mistake, we may lose a job opportunity, or maybe some money or a car. If he makes a mistake, he could lose his LIFE. He could be gunned down like a dog in the streets by his own fellow Americans. You think he’s not afraid? You think he’s not doing the best he can with the hand he was dealt? He’s a man, like any other, with a family that depends on him. He has children he wants to see grown and living secure, fulfilling lives, just like many of you. But he has an entire country depending on him, too... looking to him to be some sort of instant savior. You think he’s not feeling the pressure? You think he’s not afraid?

It took years… YEARS… for America to get in the shape it is in. Where were your cries and rallies then? My God, people!! Most of us have trouble putting together all of our children’s toys on Christmas Eve. What makes you think it is any easier to put a country back together??? If Disneyland was bought out - bankrupt and failing - would you blame the new owners if the debts weren’t paid and some of the rides and attractions were not repaired and open for adventurers the next month? How about six months? A year? That’s what’s happened here. We’ve been living fat and happy for a long time, letting things fall into disrepair. Now the “park” is just short of condemned and everyone wants the new owner to reopen immediately. It’s not going to happen. It is going to take a lot of work, a lot of commitment, and a lot of time to get this country back on its feet. Is Disneyland a bad example? How about New Orleans? Obama wasn’t president when Katrina hit. He wasn’t president for a long time afterward. New Orleans is still a mess. Why? Who is to blame for that?

I get it, okay? He’s the PRESIDENT, and he’s responsible. He made all those promises during the campaign and when he took office. You want them fulfilled, and you want them now. He needs time. When our children were born, we promised to take care of them, to protect them from harm, and to raise them to adulthood. It doesn’t happen overnight. It takes years… eighteen, and sometimes a lot more. And we don’t protect them from every scratch and bump and bruise that comes along, no matter how much we want to. We can’t. Sometimes, the best we can do is to hold them while they cry. That’s part of growing up.

You’re angry? You’re scared? You want jobs and a strong economy back in America? Fine. Boycott the companies that send their jobs overseas. Demand better, safer, more durable products. Give an honest day’s work and take pride in it. It doesn’t matter if you are a janitor or a CEO. Do the work you are paid to do and do it to the best of your ability. Show these companies why American workers are worth a higher wage. Contact your elected officials and demand responsibility and accountability to the working class voters who are the backbone of this nation. Read the Constitution, read the public laws, know your rights… and your responsibilities as a citizen of this country. Citizenship is not a birthright. It takes work. Look up the definition some time. Then look around your neighborhoods, towns and states, and find out what you can do be an active part of America.

I don’t say this lightly. I am not privileged, or rich or even particularly enlightened to what the future may hold. I am just as frightened as anyone else. I have also buried my head as deeply into the sand as anyone else for a lot of years. Now I am waking up. I am coming into my own as a Citizen of the United States. I have come to understand that people die every day trying to come to this country and start a new life. They are glad to take the risk. My great-grandparents took that same risk long ago so that my grandparents, my parents and, eventually I and my siblings could have a life that was better than what they had known. I am sure they had so many reservations, so many reasons not to make the journey that I will never know. I am sure they had doubts and fears. But they left everything behind – friends, family, everything familiar and safe to them. For that, I owe them a debt that can only be repaid one way: by living up to the citizenship they fought so hard to secure for me. We all have the same history, if we only look back far enough. We all owe the same debt to the people who built this nation, the people who made it strong. We owe it to the next generation of Americans to rebuild that legacy of strength and of hope, to make America once again a nation of promise.
~~Kate Ruef

2 comments:

Deborah Silver said...

I have missed your blog! I enjoy your mix of humor and editorial content.

Diana Rowe said...

Thanks, Deborah! It feels so good to be back in the saddle, one step at a time!