Taking America for Granted…

June, 2019, with my grandkids in NYC. “I felt tears run down my face as I saw the Statue of Liberty. I didn’t know I’d get so emotional.”

June, 2019, with my grandkids in NYC. “I felt tears run down my face as I saw the Statue of Liberty. I didn’t know I’d get so emotional.”

 

*I wake to bright sunny skies in February
Spring is early in Northern California.
*Pink flowers are all a-bloom which gives me hope
For days filled with joy and inspirations.
*Then I turn on the TV to my default CNN
And remember the dark cloud we live under.
*Daily, I feel my body shake in its reality
For I shudder in the America we live in today.

*Is it that long ago that our innocence was so raw?
That our futures were whatever we wanted them to be?
*When our parents wanted our lives to be bigger and better than theirs
And just a college education would get us the American Dream.
*An education and dreams that were shattered for them
Because most endured WWII experiences.
*They were sure we would achieve it all
They prayed for us to marry well, have a home and two cars in the garage.

*We hated the Viet Nam War, we lost family and friends
We watched JFK, MLK and RFK be assassinated.
*We were sure that was the worse we’d ever see
We hoped that was the worse we’d ever see.
*We got polio shots, we marveled at color TV, we saw man land on the moon
Elvis was King, the Beatles invaded us, Rock n’ Roll was here to stay.
*Girls went to college, mini-skirts were ok, not everyone married at 20 years old.
We had to convince our parents that life was changing and it was ok and we’d be ok.

*Through it all, I believe, we never gave a thought that the Red, White and Blue wasn’t secure or could be under seize from any enemy, near or far
Nor could it ever be.
*This was the United States of American, land of the free, home of the brave
And collectively, we could overcome McCarthyism, blacklisting, the Cold War, assassinations to our leaders, Nixon, hanging chads, 911, the Blue Dress and still come out on the other side stronger. We did and we elected our first Black President!

*America, “Give me your tired, Your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.”
As Jews, we so understand this.
*But 2020 is not what we dreamed, for so many reasons
And the novel 1984 could be more relevant than we ever expected.
*And this is the dark cloud that hoovers over so many of us Baby Boomers
For we want the American Dream to be at reach for our kids and grandkids.
*And for the first time in our life-time, too much that we took for granted
Is at stake and not at arm’s length for us seniors and our families.

*Russia, the home of so many of our grandparents
And yet, we are still in fear of who their government is and what they want from us.
*Is life coming full-circle with dreads we thought were over?
Is it a reality that we fear the man elected President of the United States of America and what he and his cronies can do to change our security?
*Can one president take away the Rule of Law
That we take for granted?
*Where are we going?
How do we burst the dark cloud and bring sunshine and blooming flowers to our kids and grandkids?

*It’s more than a college education and two cars in the garage
It’s the experiment of our Democracy, that it’s working, and other countries respect us for it, and that we want to take it for granted.
*It’s trusting the leaders we voted for
That we want to take for granted.
*It’s allowing those who flee tyranny to come to a safe border
That we want to take for granted.
*It’s making our streets safer with Gun Control, it’s acknowledging Climate Change
That we want to take for granted.

*We want our kids and grandkids to take a walk down the street or go to a concert and come home safely
We want such simple things to be normal so we can take our America for granted.

*We want all Americans to take sunshine and blooming flowers
For granted.
We want to take the Constitution of the United States of America
For granted.

*Is this all too much to ask for?
How can we take for granted that 2020 won’t be 1984?

About Sandra Taradash
As a Baby Boomer Bubbe who still feels 18 but has four grand kids to prove this is the 21 Century, Sandra writes to leave a legacy for the next generations. Her belief that these precious kids need to know their cultural and family's past in order for them to live their future is all the muse she needs! She has a Master's Degree in Psychology and Cross Cultural studies, has written a family history, personal memoir and is completing her first novel. Her grandmother's journey to America and life is her source for her deep belief and love for Judaism.

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