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Divided America - where to go from here
The way I see America right now
I don't remember if the American people were divided like now - ever before. But I wonder what direction they will go and if it will be a united move in that direction. I have friends on both ends of political ideals and I am honest enough to say I would prefer to mix both sides well and take the best out of either side.
After coming to this country I got to know the people here. I did not come with any opinion, very little in depth knowledge, even though people told me all kind of stuff about the American people when I announced I would leave for the US. I learned that their opinion and ideas are made up out of the fabrics of TV shows, media (whatever comes over from here and how it is being interpreted over there) - but hardly ever by reality. And I actually think it is hard to get a true picture unless you spend some time in that country, and I mean that this is true speaking of any country in the world.
I had the opportunity to move around a little, so I got to know a few different places and their people. I had some relationships and made friends here. So I got to know the country and the people, but I also can look at them from a different perspective than being born here and raised here.
Here is a collection of what I learned, probably not inclusive though:
- While American's love animals, there are way too many and too many killed and in shelters, because too many care less about their future. It gives tons of opportunity for "breeding". Yet, animals are not welcome at stores, in busses and many other public places - and I don't understand why.
- I have not come across a country with people so willing to donate freely and willing to help others, sure not everyone does, but the amount of this free support and help is amazing.
- The social life here is different and I never will fully understand it, maybe it also has been influences more and more by the internet. While you are friends at work, you won't get together after work. After work you meet family, but not friends so much. Period.
- The idea of being independent on the other hand is so strong and stubborn that it goes beyond what I will ever be able to fully comprehend. Everybody needs to own his own car, mostly driving it alone to and from work etc. Public transportation as far as it exists is not too well accepted - also because of the fact that it is not layed out well at all - so using the current public transportation in most places, would even be a draw back for me as well. - The elderly still depend on their independence, needing their car beyond the capability of being a save driver, because they have no other choice.
- Family has a strong value here, yet, they are torn apart by distances so many times, but most families have a stronger bond. Yet, there is no time for the retiring parents, because everybody has to work to make a living. Children are affected by daycare places and such, more than I have ever imagined.
- Renting is more expensive than buying your own home, so everybody is reaching out to buy a home to save money. But it also restricts you when you have to move and relocate which is very common in this country. So you are forced to sell, even families being separated for a while, in order to get the transition completed and eventually ending up loosing some money in the whole ordeal.
- America is pretty advanced in the medical field, yet, every day so many suffer from not having insurance, or very limited coverage and end up with bills they will never be able to pay off and their health wrecks their life forever. More and more is being invested in research, while many can't take advantage of the new knowledge anyway.
- Americans are proud to be American. Not every Nation has this kind of pride. The pride comes from being a citizen of the biggest country and so far the most influential country in the world. I never figured out how they accomplished that the whole world is copying from the US and this has been going on for quite some time.
- The Education here, I honestly prefer not to talk about it and wonder where this will go just alone 5 yrs from now. More and more people take advantage of the fact that you are able to home school your children and these children do much better than in public education. I have never heard about home schooling until I came here, not allowed in many countries. But I love the idea, especially when you see how poor the education is. Yet, we pay for education through taxes and feel we are better of teaching our kids ourselves.
- America is an English speaking country, yet, if you don't speak Spanish - in many jobs you will have a disadvantage. There are people from all over the world making up this nation, yet, the only languages that are supported are first Spanish, followed by Kreole, Vietnamese, Chinese and French. That's pretty much the end of it....When I consider the fact of Equal treatment and opportunity....it seems to fail big time here.
- You can live here and yet "travel" the world, when it comes to cultures within this country. There is such a wide variety of cultures, from dining to religion and shopping. It is an amazing experience to understand other cultures better and to learn from them and at the same time feeling some common ground in each nation.
- American prides itself by being free of racism: I see certain nationalities being given more special preferences etc than others. I hear the words African-American, Hispanic-American and sometimes Asian-American.....What about all other nations and why do we separate them by origin when man of them have never seen their place of ancestry related origin? Aren't they all simply Americans?
The divided American people
We are facing another election and I don't think I have ever seen such a divided opinion in where this country is heading or shall be heading from here. But I see one thing they all have in common: nobody is happy how things are right now, everybody agrees on that.
And I think everybody is somewhat on the same page, when it comes to spending, some voice it more openly than others, but it is scary to look at the numbers for everyone I guess. Also everybody agrees on that we need more jobs and a more stable economy. But there are many ways to get there and most of the time Politicians can come up with an idea and propose the idea....but we will only know for sure if it works when we apply it. Nobody can tell for sure what the outcome will be - there is no guarantee for nobody.
There are two parties to choose, primarily: Democrats and Republican. And it divides the country it two.....one yelling and screaming at the other. It is even dividing the nation itself. How shall either party be successful in such a divided country? Even if one party is elected , the other half will do anything to fight against whatever they have in mind....It reminds me of a saying: United we stand, Divided we fall. This phrase is an American phrase....yet, it lost its meaning when it comes to political views.
I spoke with friends and have friends on both political ends. And we know the news, each party finds something nasty about the other party. So the Democrats will scream out loud the negative stuff about the Republicans and ignore their own negative media and the other way around. No party is left with bad media - as if that solves the issue....???? Reading both, leaves us, hating both...but we have to choose...! What a choice.
What I see when I talk to people and look at it from a distance appears to be that some want to stick with the old familiar ways of America, others want to move it forward more towards a European like style - that is what comes closest to my mind, well, at least away from the old America.
What influences the ideas on both sides is the thought of independence. Some would rather keep the old independence ways in every single move, others would prefer the dependency on each other to move forward.
Some believe strongly America's foundation is on Christian believes, others think Religion has no place in politics and want to remove it completely - while I believe firmly that EVERY nation is somewhat influenced by their major religious beliefs, even in politics. The way we are raised shapes our social thinking and behavior and in the past of every nation, belief was a core foundation at least at one point in time.
Why don't we focus on the common grounds and ideals and go from there, where the American people once came from?
United we stand, divided we fall
Why can the American people not come together as a nation and pursue the goal together? Why do we need to seek blame and ride on each others opinion? Why do we have to go out on the streets to demonstrate against the other party when we have freedom of speech? The other party has the right to think of their own ideals.
Where does that leave this country when it is so divided? Yes, there will be an election and one party will win. But why do we have to boycott the ideas of the other party instead of trying to make the best out of it, trying to find common ground and move on from there? That is how America got strong and how it moved it to where it has become such an influential nation. But if we keep on being divided....It could even split up this nation so that the USA will some day no longer exist, but will be history like so many countries who divided.
Is that what the American people want in the end? Sometimes I wonder. I wonder if it is possible to keep such a nation of so many nationalities and people under the same "roof" or if sooner or later it is doomed to fail.
I learned to love the people on either side, because each side has something good to offer, they all long for a great nation, they have the same basic goal - a great America where everybody can fulfill their dream and have a decent life, with freedom of speech and religion, nobody judged by their heritage. So many good ideas and it would be tragedy if this idea falls apart.