Billi Gordon Ph.D.

Obesely Speaking

Happy Birthday America

Red, white, black and blue; she's still standing

Posted Jul 04, 2017

If humans are ever to realize that we cannot be any healthier than our sickest person, any richer than our poorest, or any happier than the saddest face in the crowd, it can only happen in America.   Because we are not Europe, Asia, Africa, South America, Oceania, Canada, Australia, Mexico, Central or South America. We are all of them. We are all stations in life, all occupations, and all human pursuits, good, bad, or otherwise. In the human struggle to become one world, one people, America is Gettysburg. 

Yet, here we stand, dividing ourselves into red and blue states, carrying on like Michigan and Ohio State fans at a football game – full of blind loyalty, and Basking In Reflected Glory for things that we have nothing to do with per se. America’s future is not a football game and treating it like it is, is egregious social and moral irresponsibility.

shutterstock Image purchased by UCLA CNS for Dr. Gordon
Source: Shutterstock Image purchased by UCLA CNS for Dr. Gordon

You can blame Obama, the Congress or Donald Trump, etc., all you want. They are not the problem, “we the people” are the problem because we don’t care enough about America to cultivate her growth. We apparently have better things to do than care about our children enough to ensure they have air to breathe,  water to drink, and good public schools.


Shutterstock Image purchased by UCLA CNS for Dr. Gordon
Source: Shutterstock Image purchased by UCLA CNS for Dr. Gordon
It’s less psychically painful to blame politicians than admit we have seriously jeopardized our children’s futures, as well as our own, because of our negligence and civic irresponsibility.    The price of blame is the surrender of the power to change.  

Being a pluralistic nation requires tolerance. Tolerance is demanding and counterintuitive for us sometimes.   However, the bottom line is this is the United States. If you want to be a part of what we stand for, you need to build a bridge and get over your fear-driven social biases. We all have the capacity to be racist, sexist, etc.  We’re humans and humans fail, but ultimately we are always more alike than different.

Our government’s problems merely reflect the mindset of our nation. We watch Reality TV and exalt rappers, who spew nothing but hate, greed, sexism, homophobia and moral depravity.

Have we forgotten?

After all of the American blood shed in the Civil War, why would we allow slavery to reincarnate as privatized prisons, many of which black athletes either own or receive money from corporations, who profit by using their slave labor. While we may target a particular athlete or a company, who are the real culprits?  We are. If we were a more moral nation, and we valued America’s decision to abolish slavery – we wouldn’t support these athletes or companies.   So, we cannot rightfully judge them for being successful at doing what we ultimately condone; if we felt and acted differently, they might do so as well.  

It’s not just the sports. It is in every arena, fashion, automobiles, food, medicine, science, music, television, and movies, etc.   Have you seen the horror that is “Reality TV”? Have you seen what we do to the animals?   Again, all of that is on us.  If we weren’t lapping it up, they wouldn’t keep putting it in the bowl.

I’ve heard it, from your mouth and mine. “America’s this, or America’s that…” “Washington and the politicians are corrupt?” Political offices are an integral part of American government, but they are not America, we the people are America. You and I are America, like every other person here.  America is our mindset, our behavior, and our willingness to practice tolerance and to learn. That is what determines what America is, not the Congress or the Oval Office. Changing the government by changing ourselves is as straightforward and prudent as knowing that if you take care of the pennies, the dollars will take care of themselves. 

We won the Revolutionary War, The Civil War, WWI, and WWII; we can win this war too.   We have survived economic crises, epidemics, hurricanes, tornados, assassinations, and 9-11. We will prevail over these troubled times as well because we are a diverse, strong, and wonderful people. So...

Happy Birthday! America... Remain Fabulous and Phenomenal

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