I loved the sentiments expressed in this little diddy from my facebook feed. Was America ever truly kind? I guess that’s really a matter of perspective. Than we can ask, “kind” compared to what? When? Where in history? Over all however yes, I’d say America has been kind in terms of providing the most opportunity for the largest number of people, in terms of our generosity and charity towards others, and our committment to human rights. We could get very jaded and cynical here and mention all of America’s faults too, but I’m not going to. I still think this is the best place in the world to live and people who continue to risk their lives trying to get here, seem to agree with me.
The meme however, speaks to how we were before the politics of personal destruction and technology took over. I liked the good old days when the rich and famous would fall on their faces all over our TV’s and we could laugh about it. Today we act as if everybody is a famous celebrity so we have the right to gloat over each others misfortune. Neighbors, friends, family. That was never our way.
At some point in recent history we went from, “I may not agree with you, but I’d die defending your right to say it,” to “just shut up and die, you aren’t supporting the right political candidate.” Hostile and divisive. Definitely not “kind.” On the bottom of the power structure fighting for scraps, like dogs fighting over garbage. Divided, not having unity, now relieved of all idealism and actually celebrating the potential downfall of an entire political system, a party, a candidate.
It’s ugly. I also know I can’t do a darn thing about it, the wheels were set in motion long ago, but kindness still matters. People far wiser than me have deduced that at the end of the day, kindness is really all that does matter.