I am proud to be a US citizen. For my generation and for that of my parents, the United States of America is and will always remain the country that liberated us from the Nazi Occupation.
I was born, almost to the date, when Hitler and Goebbels committed suicide in Berlin. The post war period, an effort that lasted nearly a half century, was a time during which countries had to rebuild themselves and their economies. These efforts, which were funded largely by the U.S. Marshall Plan, helped many European countries become even stronger and more advanced nations.
The decision to become a U.S. citizen while maintaining Belgian citizenship mirrored my emotional, political and practical vision. After nearly 20 years, the U.S. has become home. This attachment strengthened when I became a citizen and again when I could vote in my first U.S. election. In my opinion, voting rights are essential and unfortunately, but resent the difficulties made by Belgium to give access to votes to non-residents nationals for sordid political calculation. As a proud citizen of this country and a resident of New York, I participate in elections every first Tuesday of November. Additionally, I am grateful for access to Medicare (the health care system Republicans hate so deeply), which allowed me access to an extensive and life changing surgery.
I am a registered member of the Democratic Party. While I am not particularly proud of the Democratic Party, the Grand Old Party (The Republicans) which I refer to as the Gross Obstructive Party, however, is in contradiction with most of its fundamental values, particularly women’s rights, voting rights, immigration, access to healthcare, secularism, defensive use of the military,equal opportunity, and gay rights to name a few.
The United States is no longer a true democracy but a plutocracy
It takes a billion dollars to make a president, and a second one to lose the race. Over 41 years the Clinton raised three billion dollars. The disparity between classes continues to grow as the wealthy become wealthier and the poor become poorer. In a country where everything and anything is available for purchase, it is an absolute shame to reach the number of citizens and immigrants that live below the poverty line. Ultimately, it is likely this disparity will one day lead to revolutionary actions. Individualism and selfishness are the rule.
However, generosity is still very much an ingrained and admirable characteristic of American culture. The support of less fortunate populations, whether domestic or abroad mobilized the largest amounts of funds available in the world. Volunteers are an integral part of the social fabric of the Nation and the concept of “giving back” one of the duties of those who live in it. It is true to schools and universities, local communities or the private hospital system.