Do you remember her? Our rhetoric was imperfect, but there were guardrails in the grooves of our brain that kept us from the dregs of profanity. Do you remember the America where leaders respected each other, in spite their differences?
I miss the trust that people had in each other’s decency, when we bolstered our resiliency instead of dark conspiracy. Somewhere over the past few years, we’ve emboldened our rage. We’ve taken down the lines of demarkation between dignity and disgust.
We’ve ignored our values. For years as a nation, we haven’t valued the holiness of life. We still haven’t turned that page. But would we actually keep kids in a cage?
I miss the days when name-calling was considered taboo. And tweets from birds were all the tweets that we knew. I miss the dignity of her voice. I miss the power of a rigorous, thoughtful, respectful debate. Yes, I miss those days, and I wonder if she’ll ever rediscover her grace. Her respect for humanity. Her fear of Divinity. But the strides of the enemy seems to have quickened the pace of injustice.
I guess the thing I miss the most is truth. It’s all about who can scream the loudest. You can’t seem to win without hyperbole. We’ve lost our scruples, our trust and our dignity.
I miss the prayers. I miss the hope. I miss the church before is was commandeered by debates over masks and political fears.
Perhaps our incivility simmered underground and it had been there all along. But today, we are in a nation where the fever of hate is raging and no elected official can soothe her.
I still believe in the high-minded, winsome experiment called America. Maybe we can change. But frankly, right now everything seems scattered. Shattered.
I miss the America I knew.