Being an American

“Being an American”

Growing up in a third world country and experiencing disappointments in daily life, the opportunity to come to America was everything that anyone could ever want. Just knowing that you were coming to America made everyone treat you differently and even returning from America, you would be greated with so much respect. However all that has changed now. Nowadays, even those in third world countries want nothing to do with America or Americans. We are no longer feared as a country. We are in fact no longer the land of opportunity as we used to be. Being an American used to mean rights and freedom to do and to live knowing that you are taken care of and that you have no worries as far as safety but all that has changed. People used to keep their doors unlocked, their garages and windows open but that is no longer the case in this country. My family used to be one of those families with the windows and the garage door open but we can no longer do that because of the rise in crime.
When I think about being an American and what it means, I think about freedom, and safety. With safety, I picture being able to go in and out of my house without worry for my safety. I think about going back to the days when you would leave the door unlocked and the windows open to bring in fresh air, without being worried that someone is going to kill you in your sleep. What happened to those times? What happened to that safety that we used to have? Take as an example the couple that got shot due to someone invading their home according to http://www.11alive.com. On March 20th, 2017, there was a home invasion at an apartment complex; a husband was shot several times and the wife was shot while trying to climb out the window with her child in hand.
Being an American means having certain rights that we are privileged to exercise. As citizens of this country, one of those rights is the freedom of religion, speech and press. We are daily reminded of our rights but once we exercise those rights, they are ignored or manipulated. An example of this is demonstrated in the story of Melissa and Aaron, owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa. Melissa exercised her freedom of religion but ended up getting heavily fined because she refused to serve a gay couple. According to Foxnews.com, “Melissa and Aaron Klein…cited religious beliefs when they refused to bake a wedding cake for Laurel and Rachel Bowman-Cryer more than two years ago” (www.foxnews.com). Melissa and Aaron Klein were fined a fee that if paid would bankrupt them. Racheal and Laurel were awarded an obscene amount of money in damages. I honestly see this as an example of our rights as Americans being trampled upon.
Being an American should be about having the freedom to live according to the rights that are in our constitution. Being an American should be about living in this country knowing that you are protected by the Constitution and that the government is doing everything that it can to ensure that you are safe. However, this is not the America that it used to be. This country has changed so much that even safety is a concern on the home front. As an American, I only wish for us to go back to a country that feared God, took care of each other and where safety was not an issue.

Reference page
“Oregon bakery owners refuse to pay damages in gay wedding cake case.” Fox News. FOX News Network, n.d. Web. 30 Mar. 2017.
Leslie, Jennifer. “DeKalb ‘candy lady’ targeted in home invasion.” 11 Alive . N.p., 20 Mar. 2017. Web. 02 Apr. 2017. .

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3 comments

  1. I would have to slightly disagree with your statement that everything has changed and now third world counties want nothing to do with America or Americans. While I can see your point to a certain degree, I would assume that if America offered to lend aid in the form of food, man power, or other resources and supplies, a third world country would not turn them down. I think that America is still very much so the land of opportunity especially in comparison to other parts of the world. We have so many opportunities that we can take advantage of such as all of our rights we have been granted. One of my professors says, “America is the worst country in the world, except all the others. Democracy is the worst form of government in the world, except all the others.” In saying this, he recognizes that America and the way of doing things here is not quite perfect, but it is the best alternative to anything else.

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  2. I enjoyed your post about being an American. I have lived here in America my whole life and so I have not had the experiences you had entering and leaving America. I did not realize we were looked up to so much from other countries at least a while ago anyway. It’s sad to think that we are not respected as a country the way we used to be. I understand why that is now though. With all the racism, presidential drama and just the way we speak to each other and treat each other is so unprofessional and disrespectful these days.
    The part where you said our safety awareness is heightened is very true. I can relate as well, when I was growing up my mom used to keep our doors and windows open as well during the day and sometimes the windows open at night as well. Safety wasn’t as thought about as it is now. It is sad to realize how careful we have to be and with that carefulness comes stress, anxiety and not being able to enjoy everyday little things.

    With that said, we are so much more safer here than we would be in some other countries. I would not trade the life I have here with any other place. I agree on our freedom and rights to believe in our own opinions. You are right when you say we have that right for freedom of speech but when we voice it, it has no merit sometimes in these difficult situations we are not used to.

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  3. Thank you Laila!! I really enjoyed your post. It wasn’t the same boring America is perfect and everything is fine. You really spoke your mind and brought out some good points. I too grew up with my windows and doors open, my mother still keeps the doors unlocked and windows open… Scares me to death! I always try to place my feet in these people shoes, like the gay couple at the bakery or even the owner… Who’s right? I don’t agree with the bakery owners, if they are going to have an open business they should discriminate. But where do you draw the line? What if every place had stipulations on what or who they would serve? It’s a very thin blurred line.

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