Thursday, July 1, 2010

A New Patriotism

The weather has been glorious these past two days. Went biking in Virgina this morning on the W&OD. On the way back, came to a stop sign on the trail where it crosses a road. A guy in a pickup, wearing a cowboy hat and playing country music on his radio, stopped, when he didn't have to, to let me go by without stopping on my bike. It was an act of kindness. Made me feel good and to realize how much we are missing when we don't try to treat each other with kindness and tolerance. What I think we have been missing for a long time now is the sense of being citizens, fellow citizens, comrades in a great adventure to see if government by the people, for the people and of the people can rise to the challenges that face us. We need a new form of patriotism in which we all recognize that whatever our different views, we are all trying together to get it right. This new patriotism - maybe just good, old fashioned civility - should start with recognizing each other as fellow citizens of this great country founded on the notion that freedom and democracy works better. Friendly kindness and mutual tolerance and understanding is patriotic and good for us.

1 comment:

quis said...

When I'm on my bicycle, which is quite often -- I biked from Keedysville to White Sulphur Springs, WV, in the early spring -- my thoughts often turn to basic civility, of the lack thereof. I am not yet a fellow citizen of the yahoos who seem intent on running me off the road, but I am their fellow human being and wouldn't mind being recognised as such. A spot of ubuntu would be nice.