I may not always be proud to be an American, but I'm damn sure thankful to be one. See, it's difficult for me to be proud of my country when the rest of the world sees us as meddlesome, arrogant fools. In many cases, I think we *are* meddlesome, arrogant fools. We worry more about our children seeing a woman breastfeeding than we do about them watching violent movies. We try to legislate morality, instead of parenting our children, including teaching them our values. We judge others instead of looking in the mirror. We spend our time watching reality tv and coveting the celebrity lifestyle instead of using that time to help others.
Ah, but I've gotten off topic a bit...
Today is Election Day in the United States. By the end of the day today, we will have chosen our next President. Will our current President win another term, or will there be a changing of the guard? I don't know, but I'm so happy to be a part of the process. I cast my vote on a peaceful Saturday morning, surrounded by other men and women eager to have their voices heard. After the election, there will be no civil war, no rioting in the streets; some will be happy and some will not, but life in America will go on tomorrow much the same as it was yesterday.
I may not often be proud to count myself among 21st-century Americans, but I'm thankful to live here, where I am free to form an opinion and speak it aloud. I am free to choose what I wear, whom I will marry, where I will work and live. I believe we have a long way to go towards ensuring true freedom, which must include equal rights for everyone. But we have come a long way, and we make progress with each passing day. And that is something for which I am very, very thankful.