“We can’t win,”… (ic)

“We can’t win,”- Senator John McCain, Arizona Republican commenting about the Government Shutdown

I Am America: Part II

Is this the country we know, the country we grew up believing in? Is this really America? Some might think otherwise, and some are understandably confused, frustrated over the shutdown, the impasse of our government that starts today. I know of a young man who has a quite the perspective over what’s happening now. Last post you were introduced to him, to this rising video producer: who is making his way in America, the United States of America. Yet, after a fresh conversation and sit down interview with him, he is not so sure that America is united as it appeared. His perspective on our government shutting down today temporarily is this: “After the situation in Syria, this shows America right now concentrates too much on international politics.” Eugene went on to say that America’s conflict between Republicans and Democrats “is a good example that America should focus on their inside problems more so than outside.” “America for me is known, is associated as a united country, but like them Russia for example, the U.S. talked too much about Russia’s problems while losing their own battles here at home.” He in fact believes that this political conflict “is stupid.” Yet beyond the silliness of our government’s mess presently, immigrants like Eugene still believe that you can “feel the spirit of opportunities and diverse perspectives here.” “I can feel the big difference here, in making a career and achieving your dream, than what I felt in Russia.” For instance, he see’s remarkable financial opportunities because “people pay good money for your work.” Even in every day life, in doing simple things like taking the bus, Eugene has quite a view, “To feel secure here is complicated, on the bus you see all kinds of people, you have freedom but on the bus for example you don’t feel secure.” Is this a paradox? Perhaps yes, because after this shutdown and after many other recent events we can see a stark contrast between our proclaimed values, between what we are known to be and what we actually are. In the words of John McCain, we “can’t win” by taking the small view over petty things such as maintaining a congressional majority rather than big things like maintaining government workers jobs especially in light over us still climbing out of the recession. We cant win by ignoring the challenges such as security as Eugene spoke of, such as violence here in our nation that happens every day in blood washed streets in Chicago or a even a school in Connecticut. We wont win, until we get over our narrow mindedness and short term thinking, and take the long view for where we need to go, its the only way that will save us, that will allow us to continue to be ..America.

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