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Hello and Welcome!
It's the final weeks of 2010. Holiday time is upon us. Good tidings. Great cheer. Et cetera and so on. And I for one am looking forward to a little down time. A nice bit of "slow down" if you will. Perhaps some reflection, a little visioning for the coming year and for certain some booze. Maybe even lots of booze. This is America after all. Amidst all the food, family and shopping, being driven to drink is certainly a national pastime.
Reflecting on America in 2010, there are a couple of other certainties that will be with us as 2011 is ushered in. The war isn't over, even if we want it. The economy not recovered. And the environment is still being left to the polluters.
The education system is abysmal for most. Health care now even more corporatized. Big money floods like never before into our elections. More tax cuts for the rich, less jobs for the rest. Glenn Beck is still talking insanity. Sarah Palin's out there doing whatever the hell you call that thing Sarah Palin does. And John Boehner is set to be the new Speaker of the House. While President Barack Obama, from this lefty's perspective, is leaving a lot to be desired.
The least we can do, instead of building that damn wall, demonizing the Islamic cultural center in New York or keeping our gay and lesbian service members in the shadows of the military, is all be a little more welcoming. It should be handshake first (or hug, whichever you prefer), suspicion second. It's the core of that American Dream Representative Boehner is so fond of.
It wasn't always "innocent until proven guilty". And it doesn't have to be "this is America, learn to speak English, these colors don't run, USA-USA-USA" or whatever else we chant to assert our "dominance."
Instead, we can be a little less of a jerk.
For the record, we need not worry about taking our country back from anyone. There's plenty of America to go around, we just need to learn to share it a little better. Sometimes it can seem impossible, what with all the wealth up at the top. But we can change that. And fix the environment. And end those wars. And make education available to all. Same with health care. It will take time. And a lot of effort. Along the way, I think it would be best if, instead of that wall and whatever demonizing of the other we've got going on this week, let's put the friendlier side our nature out front first. And save all the energy we've been putting into that damn wall for some new schools instead.
So let's keep being the place where anybody, anywhere can come and make a go of it. That's certainly something to be proud of.
Now say it with a smile:
THIS IS AMERICA. HELLO! AND WELCOME.
You can purchase a print of This Is America Hello! and Welcome for $20 HERE. It's my End-O-2010 poster being sold so I can keep doing random projects like this. Thank you for your support.
-- Justin Kemerling, Designer. justinkemerling.com
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