I am an “All-American girl.” I love this country and all it represents. I am proud to have been born beneath Old Glory, and I am honored to place a hand over my heart and pledge allegiance. Patriotism is a wonderful thing; it’s identifying with one’s ultimate “home team.”
If the United States is our home team, it stands to reason its citizens are our teammates. Any team comes with great diversity of ability, appearance, skill, preference, knowledge and point-of-view. These diversities give a team fullness and round out its greatness. The same is true when you identify as an American.
If we accept that our highest aspiration is to be incredible human beings, we can endeavor to be the greatest of Americans. Being a great American requires us to love, include and understand the unique beauty of every citizen of the U.S., as well as the world.
On the cusp of celebrating Independence Day, let us open our minds to the past and expand our hearts into the future. The Fourth of July encourages our citizens to raises flags and to marvel at fireworks, but a huge percentage of our population has no idea about the holiday’s genesis or its meaning. There is great confusion between the day in 1776 when 13 colonies declared their independence from England that we celebrate on July Fourth and an event that took place in 1789, when the constitution became our official governing document. The important trajectory to follow is that our forefathers first declared independence in 1776 and then Americans became “We the People” when the Constitution was enacted in 1789.
“We the People” means all the people. “We the People” houses no bigotry and gives no shelter to bias. Our goal of seeking independence over 200 years ago must evolve and ring truer than ever on these shores we’ve pledged our allegiance to protect. The land is not all we guard; each citizen deserves our love and loyalty, too. If “We Are America,” let us be good Americans, too. Let us be ultimate stewards of our brethren. Let us truly decide to let freedom ring.
I have been told I am not an “average” wrestling fan. I find that an odd statement because I’ve been privileged to meet WWE enthusiasts across the globe, and there’s not a single thing “average” about any one of them. This analogy holds true for what an “average American” looks like as well. As this country grows, evolves and changes, we must gain renewed perspective. The genius of our founding documents was the allowance for our young country to grow. America has blemishes we have remedied over time. The time is ripe in America to end all bias and bigotry and be the greatest country and the true beacon of light we were always destined to be.
“We the People” cannot be bystanders. We must put our foot down when others degrade any of our citizenry. Patriotism means we must love our fellow human beings, including people who look nothing like we do and believe in things we may not. Acceptance opens doors to vistas more beautiful and grand than a closed mind has range to imagine. The greater our capacity to openness, the greater our receptivity to beauty.
In this majestic land, there are women, men, old, young, lesbian, gay, straight, bi, transgender, able-bodied, disabled, intellectually challenged and those of “average” intelligence (however, that is subjectively measured). There are people of every color, creed, ethnicity and religious background. There lies within this list an indisputable common denominator: Every last one of us is a human being. The soul of “We the People” is our humanity. A truly civilized society takes care of its citizenry. A civilization imbued with greatness believes in the value of all and the inherent potential within.
We Are America and it is written into the framework of our foundation that we embrace the power of our independence by reconciling our understanding of this. United with love and understanding, we stand strong.
As we look to the celebration of July Fourth, let’s pause in awe of how far this country has come and then push it to go further. Let’s come together to make up our ultimate “home team.” Let’s defend our citizens the way our great military defends our land. Let’s see humanity as our common thread and see no color beyond our Red, White and Blue.
I believe #WeAreAmerica ... always.