I am conflicted.
A part of my heart soars whenever I see an American Flag or “United We Stand” scrawled on a sheet hanging from an overpass.
But another part of me is scared. I worry about what the flags and American pride mean to people.
I like the idea of camaraderie. I like the idea of brotherhood and sisterhood.
I don’t like the idea of “Our team is the best.”
It is dangerous. Pride is dangerous.
I remember in High school, I was pretty amped up on school pride. *Go Centurions!!!*
That pride is the source of one of my most shameful moments. The only occasion of violence in my adult life was at a High School football game.
I was in the stands and physically attacked an over-zealous fan on the other team. They started it, but what does that matter?
I became so filled with pride in “Us” that I found it easy to attack “them.”
Was I defending Good Sportsmanship or Fair Play? No. I was trying to destroy the bad guy in order to defend my team’s honor.
Am I saying this is what is happening in the world today? Not at all. World politics, Religious wars, and Trillions of dollars make the current situation incomprehensibly complex.
I only know that, even on its most simple level, we are playing a dangerous game. I urge honest reflection and compassion whenever possible.
The camaraderie I feel right now is with the world, not just Americans. I feel a Brotherhood with all the people on the planet who respect human life and freedom. (“America” does not always fall into that category. And there are billions of non-Americans who do.)
Honestly, I wish I had the strength to push HugNation harder. My “Team” includes every person on the planet and I wish I could hug them all.
Will it change the world? I dunno. I think a better question is, “Is it worth it to try?”