I’m not a cynic — I’m a pragmatist. And wow — the lack of empathy is truly staggering. How is it that 1 in 6 children and 1 in 6 elders are hungry and you say that there are plenty of free meals available. What’s wrong with those poor dumb fucks that they don’t know that? America is not great — it’s diseased and it’s not going to get any better unless we deal with the problems at hand. You can’t find solutions to problems if you won’t even acknowledge that they exist. I use the brain God gave me to look at the real picture; not the one imagined through rose-colored glasses.

Here’s an excerpt from a more expanded version of my response that I’m working on. Thanks for the story prompt:

While the labor market has recovered significantly and employment has returned to pre-crisis levels, there is still widespread debate regarding the health of the U.S. economy. In addition, even though the worst effects of the recession are now fading, the economy still faces a variety of significant challenges going forward. Deteriorating infrastructure, wage stagnation, rising income inequality, elevated pension and medical costs, as well as large current account and government budget deficits, are all issues facing the US economy. Focus Economics

In other words, we’ve got a lot of work to do. I believe that the most patriotic thing that a person can do is to refuse to turn a blind eye to our country’s shortcomings and instead focus on the ways that we can call for and work towards a better life for all Americans. Saying that we are exceptional without having the goods to actually back that up is just empty nationalism.

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Dispelling cultural myths with research-driven stories. My favorite word is “specious.” Not fragile like a flower; fragile like a bomb! Twitter @ElleBeau

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