To hear the rest of the world plus a sizable number of Democrats, everything is wrong with us. We’re damned if we do and damned if we don’t.
During my first marriage, I had that problem. No matter how hard I tried to do as my husband expected of me, the rules always changed in the middle, and all my effort was for nothing. Arguments netted me the label spiteful, while during the argument I would ask my husband why he did something he knew was going to hurt me, and he would say, “Because you did….” I’d find myself endlessly apologizing for things I’d never done… just to keep the marriage together because I believed that’s how it should be. No matter what he did it was always my fault because he did it because I did… although I never did the thing he was saying I did. He did them but somehow I always ended up with the responsibility for his actions. When I’d finally had enough was when he tried to shame me for going to my dying mother for her last bit of time on this earth. He not only put himself in the way of me going… after having promised my mother I could come… he moved his current girlfriend in the house while I was gone. He told the children I said not to call me when I had done no such thing. Oh there were a lot of behaviors he engaged in during that time all with the aim of reeling me back into his control. Later, much later, after the anger and hurt and defeat, I came to realize that I was everything he wasn’t so he tried to destroy me and remake me in his image so he didn’t feel so inferior. I suppose it never occurred to him that he had the choice of his own actions as much as I had control of mine.
However, his way kept him with the power in the relationship whereas I had none, or perceived I had none and I willingly took responsibility for his actions… because he said it was my fault and he had all the power. At that point, I could no longer see any good in myself although I tried to be very very good in attempt to be “his perfect wife” little realizing it was the attempt to be as perfect as humanly possible that was my downfall. Or perhaps it was his.
I think about these micros and apply them to the macro of the world. In Iowa, Thompson “campaigned” and said:
“I am unabashedly pro-life,” he told the crowd by way of introduction from the fair’s political soapbox, where Mr. Romney, Mr. Giuliani and Mrs. Clinton had all tried to reach Iowa voters in recent days. “I am pro-Second Amendment. And I don’t apologize for the United States of America.”
While most people might focus on the first sentences, it was the last sentence which stuck with me because of the epiphany that accompanied it. For the last few decades we have spent an inordinate amount of time apologizing for existing. No matter how hard we try, no matter what we do, the world hates us for existing… because we are a reminder of what they are not. We have the left trying to remake the United States in the image of socialist Europe without ever realizing we’ll never be able to achieve that goal. The rules will change somewhere in the middle and all we’re doing is delaying the inevitable power shifts until we have “given away” the power we have as we continue accepting responsibility for the rest of the world’s imperfections along with our own.
When we give credence to other countries’ criticisms of us because they don’t like how we act, how we think, or how we look why are we apologizing? If they don’t like us, they can move along and associate with people they like better, right? However, that’s not the point of the criticism. They want to crook their fingers and have us come running to bail them out of whatever crisis is occurring at the time while maintaining the power. So, they criticize us and whatever we do to help as not good enough or not the right thing to do and call us arrogant and rude and crude and on and on… hence, they direct the show and maintain power while we accept responsibility for their stupidity. Yes, I call it stupidity because it’s a childish way to live as an individual or a country… any country, just pick one and you’ll find innumerable criticisms of the United States… the ones most capable of accomplishing the job are usually the ones who do accept responsibility. We’re not a superpower. We never have been, except for a few fleeting moments in history. But we are a power unto ourselves and it is this power that scares other nations.
Are we a perfect nation? No. Are we any less perfect than other nations? No. Are we more perfect? Depends on whose perspective you use. I love the United States of America, imperfections and all. Others don’t. Still others are envious of the freedoms we take for granted. But instead of trying to be like us, they try to make us like them… much as my ex-husband wanted to remake me in his image.
The harder we try to make them like and accept us as we are the harsher will become their criticism. They show contempt to cover their envy and it’s time we stopped apologizing for being us. It’s time we stopped apologizing and accepting blame for the world’s ills because those ills are not of our making, no matter what they try to say.
When Ron Paul gives credence to the claim, they’re over here because we’re over there, he’s accepting responsibility for the Middle East’s actions of allowing us in. We didn’t fight a war to be there, they let us in because they saw money and power in allowing it. We fought only when their excesses against us were so great we had to fight or suffer the slow death of oppression, including Iraq because Saddam Hussein thumbed his nose at us many many times since the Gulf War with the United Nations’ complicity. Yes, we have some responsibility for this but we are not totally responsible. We didn’t attend to our needs but tried to please everyone else and we have apologized endlessly for being: us, just as I endlessly apologized to my ex-husband for being: me… until it was either commit suicide for being such a worthless person or giving back to my ex-husband ownership of his own responsibilities instead of taking them on my shoulders.
The world is not our responsibility alone. Other countries, their leaders, have to take ownership of their responsibilities and leave us to ours. It’s time to stop apologizing for being the United States of America, take care of our problems despite what the rest of the world thinks, and let the rest of the world deal with its problems in the same way.
The best day of my life was the day I realized I no longer had to apologize for being me and not having to accept responsibility for my ex-husband. It wasn’t immediately after the divorce. He didn’t recognize the fact that I was no longer responsible for his bad choices and continued to try to push them off onto me. Eventually, he did get the message and promptly married someone else onto whom to push them.
It might take awhile to get the message understood by the rest of the world, too, but it’s time to stop letting them off the hook with their choices by accepting responsibility for them. We have enough to do dealing with our own. I, for one, am tired of apologizing to an imperfect world for not attaining unattainable perfection while they revel in their own imperfect superiority.
Update: As a prime example of what I’m talking about: Bush Seeks Neighborly Agenda
At the end of article there is this stated:
Bush stepped off Air Force One and onto a red carpet at an airport in Ottawa where he was greeted by a bagpiper and a ceremonial honor guard dressed in red jackets and tall, black fur hats. Bush flew to the resort on the Marine One presidential helicopter, which landed in a grassy clearing along the water.A few hundred protesters amassed at the gate of the resort. Police in riot gear used tear gas to hold back about 50 of them, who responded by flinging rocks, branches and plastic bottles. A line of police in riot gear jostled with about 50 demonstrators. A few hundred marched on the front gate of the summit compound shouting taunts.
Had it been me, I would have turned around and reboarded the helicopter. It sounds, to me, as if it was geared to put us at a disadvantage before negotiations start. That’s okay with me. I’d take my aid and trade negotiations elsewhere, where they might be appreciated. Let them fend for themselves for awhile.