Originally, these words were never going to make it here. As is often the case among writers, you write and shelve until you come up with something that works.
Sunday, my beloved Detroit Lions delivered their latest round of disappointment, this time within mere inches of victory. But I wasn’t oblivious to what was really happening on Sunday. I didn’t miss Derek Carr praying while his teammates knelt during the national anthem in primetime. And I sure couldn’t avoid scrolling through countless Facebook musings.
So I drafted away. Then shelved. Then a campaign rally speech was given from the Fresno City Council dais.
And with that, let’s start at square one: We’re not supposed to agree all of the time.
Being able to protest and disagree is a right. You don’t get to tell anyone how to protest. Our country thankfully isn’t governed by the unwritten rules of baseball.
Are there consequences to protest? Of course. But to whine about how your feelings are hurt because someone else has an opinion doesn’t make you more American, it makes you a fossil.
Stop posting photos of veterans for your own personal Facebook vendettas. Yes, they fought for the United States and all of its magnificent freedoms. One of those personal freedoms? Free speech.
I hate to break it to you, but there is a larger than average chance you are not the protector of all things “Good ol’ days”. If you don’t want to watch football, that’s fine. Word has it NASCAR has a home for you.
Baby Boomers, stop blaming Millennials for this. They grew up in your homes. They went to your schools. They attended your churches. They don’t know how to fix a car, mow a lawn, or shake a hand properly most likely because you were too busy fighting the oppression that was “The Greatest Generation.” You know, your parents. The ones that stayed married for 60 years, saved their money, didn’t refinance their homes four times over so they could buy seven new flat screen televisions and go on a cruise because they “deserved to go on vacation because their lives were so difficult.”
Here are a few numbers: 22,381.20. 4.4. 3.79. 2.57.
The first? That’s the where the Dow Jones closed yesterday. The second is the national unemployment rate. The third is the average interest rate on a 30-year mortgage. The last is the average price of a gallon of gas in America.
What was the purpose of these random pieces of data, you ask? Because it proves that under a Democrat and a Republican, this country is doing well. You can invest your money, you can get a job, you can buy a house, and you can put gas in your car. This country is great because not only can you chose what you want your profession to be, but you can reinvent yourself over and over again if you fail.
We’re all embarrassing ourselves over this. If a group of Americans are upset about a perceived injustice, it’s on us to listen to them and see if there is a way to correct it. The melting pot is what makes us great, but it also makes us have the conversation that sometimes is uncomfortable. The dialogue makes us all students of others. I may disagree with you, but learning from honest discourse without threat of retaliation is what allows us all to grow.
We’re better than this current round of anger. And if we are not, what the hell are we proud of?