Sunday, December 23, 2012

Our country. Our world.

We live in a country where literacy, even just functional, is a developmental milestone attainable by a majority of the population and not merely the province of a learned elite.

We live in a world where, while true research requires a large amount of time, just about any answer to any problem or question can be found by typing a phrase into a search engine.

We live in a time where we know more about medicine than ever before, and we strive to keep people living longer and better instead of accepting everything as a death sentence.

We live in an age where we know more about child development, pedagogical process, and mental health than we ever could have imagined.

A world of instant feedback.

A global society where we can communicate with everyone easily.

A country where, despite disparities, every child is entitled to a secondary level education.

Indoor plumbing is expected!

We are rich. Many people own cars. Many people are able to live in big beautiful homes far beyond the boundaries of public transit routes. Commuting to our places of employment is such a luxury that it is seen as an annoyance.

At the touch of a button on our phones, we can create a pretty high quality photographic or videographic record of our daily lives.

We have everything so big and so grand around here that we have the good fortune to get mired in the minutia.

Look around next time we go to vote. People who are black and white and everything in between, male and female, property owner and tenant, all vote here.

Notice the different types of life choices available to us. Perhaps we get overwhelmed at the prospect, but we can make decisions about how to dress, what kind of jobs to do, how to care for our families, and who takes on what roles. Our lot in life is not completely predetermined by our families, our genders, or even our financial situation. I'm not looking to discount the adversity that many people still face in trying to live their lives, but it's a different world, and we make progress every day.

This is not our founding fathers' country anymore. It is greater beyond their wildest dreams.

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