July 4, 2013 by Julia
Now, gun-totin’ conservatives don’t have a monopoly on patriotism! And just to prove it, I’ve compiled a list of five things I love about America for Independence Day, despite the fact that I’m a tree-huggin’ liberal.
- Our diversity of people and culture. To me, this is what America is about. It’s what sets us apart from most other countries. Of course we still deal with prejudice, ignorance and racism. But we’re dealing with it, slowly yet surely. We have no choice, because this is what America looks like: the whole world mixed up together. And it’s beautiful.
2. Our diversity of landscape. In fact, I get a little weepy thinking about our spacious skies, amber waves of grain, and purple mountain majesties above the fruited plains (paraphrased from “America the Beautiful,” of course). We’ve got it all. Seriously. Desert, forest, meadow, mountains, beaches, the gentle and the dramatic. If it’s sheer natural beauty we’re looking for, we usually don’t have to drive far to get there, even if we live in Manhattan.
3. Our music. Basically, modern music was born here (not to brag, oranything). I’m not a scholar on the subject, but I think gospel, bluegrass and ragtime might have been the beginning, leading to jazz and soul and country and pop and rock and hip-hop. We tried out new beats and shook our hips and got down and dirty. We sang our hearts out. We pushed to discover new realms of emotion and fun and innovation. Our modern music was infectious, and still is.
4. Our films. Hollywood is where our movie culture began, and still thrives. Film is such a new addition to the art of storytelling; sometimes I think we forget how much we’ve learned from American cinema. I’m proud to live in a country that produces such a wide variety of films every year.
5. The openness, confidence, honesty and friendliness that is part of the “American Spirit.” We’re go-getters. We are self-made. We are down-to-earth. We tell it like it is. We keep it real. We push the envelope. (I know I am speaking in mass generalizations here, but it’s just so much fun to try to sum up our cultural vibe as a whole, as long as it’s positive.)
Sophistication and mysteriousness are overrated, am I right? I probably wouldn’t think so if I possessed either of those qualities, but still…