I want to start this post with making it clear that I have been very blessed to grow up in the USA.
Like many I have been obsessed with watching the Olympics and it has caused a surge of patriotism to well-up within me. Growing up in the middle of the country, I was able to sing all the patriotic songs from the time I could talk...thanks mom :) So, as I was watch our athletes receive their gold medals and the National Anthem plays, I sing along (while my dog looks at me like I am crazy), but I sing. However, I have noticed that many of our athletes don't.
Last night I called my mom and told her I have figured out how to contribute to the Olympic effort. I will teach all of our athletes the words to the Star Spangled Banner. Then my mom replies, "I am sure they are just too full of emotion." To which I reply, "so are the athletes from all the other countries and they seem to sing along with their anthems." Then my mom says, "Well maybe they are like you and sister and refuse to sing the National Anthem because they are mad at the country." I took offense, I have been so proud of our athletes. I went off on my poor mother. I told her I have been singing and rooting for our Country because this is good clean competition, something that we can truly be proud of.
However, I didn't stop there, I kept going. The Olympic competition is how we show our sportsmanship to the world! I am proud of them and us, but I really hate the way George Bush represents us. Like yesterday when he told Russia to stop bullying their neighbors because this is the 21st Century. Can someone tell me what in the hell he has been doing for the last 8 years? I would call the whole Iraq debacle a huge case of bullying! And now Bush has the nerve to tell Russia not to and is offended with Russia doesn't follow Bush and "do as I say, not as I do?" This is the reason I cringe and shy away from the National Anthem and waving my flag all the time like I did as a kid!
Mom stopped me there as I took a breath and said "man you are on a roll." I guess I was and still am. It honestly hurts me that I can't be proud of my Country in ALL aspects of life. Somehow, the Olympics has showed me what I have lost when it comes to pride in my Country. Now, I just have to figure out ways in which I can reclaim the pride I have by somehow changing the course our Nation is on.
Sure there are the elections, but seriously, I don't know how a new administration will be able to turn things completely around. We as citizens have to do something, but what and how? I think people on both sides of the spectrum feel similar in this respect. The sense that no matter who is elected, it will be politics as usual. So, I just watch the Olympics, root for my country and pray that somehow God will intervene.