Proud to be an American

Happy birthday, USA!

When I say I am proud to be an American, (a USian, really, but I am quoting a song title), I am proud of what we have done that is progressive, such as women’s suffrage, and the civil rights movement. I am also optimistic of the potential we have to improve ourselves. I do not think that means we have to ignore problems that we have, or not admit mistakes, as many people mistakenly consider patriotism to be. I think having low standards and ignoring our issues is the opposite of patriotism.

Anyway, despite the partially successful civil rights movement of the 60’s, there is still glaring racism and racial inequalities in our country. Please check out this blog carnival at the Uneccesarean. It’s a round up of posts discussing the shockingly and depressingly high rates of infant and maternal mortality suffered by black women and infants in our country.

And, before someone goes there (which has happened before on this blog and on others so often it’s on racism bingo cards), it’s not a class issue. These inequalities still exist even when the mother is college educated, compared to white mothers who don’t even have a high school degree. This is more pervasive and deeper than class. Not that poverty isn’t important, but there is no quota for issues we should address to make this country even greater.

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “Proud to be an American

  1. I struggle with this particular holiday. I want to celebrate it…I want to be proud of our accomplishments. On the other hand the inequalities really are still so very stark. Julie Clawson had a post last year that helped reframe the discussion a bit (http://julieclawson.com/2009/07/03/independence-day-heroes/) which was helpful.

    I think, as you suggest, focusing on what we might become in the future would help. I hope one day the tributes on this day will have a few less pictures of white men as its representative.

  2. Pingback: Nothing like bad news to drive a message home « Mom’s Tinfoil Hat

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