As a kid, I remember having had an ardent affinity for politics, in addition to a fervent love of my country. Although, my interest in polity could be seen as anomalous given my upbringing. Raised in Galveston’s public housing for the vast majority of my formative years, myself and many of my peers were seemingly apathetic to the American hegemonic society.
Our apathy was not because we did not love our country. It was primarily a consequence of us feeling that the leaders of our nation had forgotten about us. While during that period of our lives, we didn’t have a grasp of public policy, we knew we were treated in an inequitable manner. Valid empirical data supported our assertion, albeit we didn’t need pedagogical studies to validate our visceral experiences.
Nonetheless, despite the disparate treatment, my endearment for the country remains unchanged. I firmly believe that the United States is the greatest country in the world, despite its past indiscretions. Only in America, can a poor kid from a modest island (I mean modest affectionately) grow up to live and work in the shadows of his native state’s capitol. To reach the pinnacle of academia by pursuing a Ph.D. and obtain degrees from institutions which have produced luminaries such as Evelyn Lieberman, Mickey Leland and Barbara Jordan.
Therefore, the excellent examples of service to the country by these personages guide me today. Further, as a policy scholar, I often study leaders across partisan lines. Throughout my studies, I’ve developed great reverence and admiration for American trailblazers such as presidents Reagan, Eisenhower, George H.W. Bush, Kennedy, Johnson and Obama.
Though, as a Democrat, I am vehemently opposed to many conservative policies. I still give my Republican counterparts due deference pursuant to their First Amendment rights. This is the immaculate beauty of America, that those who grace her shores have the autonomy to fully embrace “peaceful” ideologies without fear of retribution.
Nevertheless, I am fearful that this notion is in danger under the 45th President’s leadership. Donald Trump has placed the country in dangerous peril. Our powerful institutions have been feverishly challenged in recent months with his iniquitous allegations leveled at critical media and political opponents. Then there is Russia. In which, at this time there is pervasive speculation of collusion. Nonetheless, until recently, the investigation has been conspicuously political. With Mr. Trump’s repulsive lack of decorum leading the charge. Unfortunately, both dominant political parties have acted almost in-kind.
Moreover, as a Democrat, I can admit that both sides have behaved in a repugnant manner. Serving party, instead of the people. This is not the America I know! However, there is hope. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has reaffirmed our faith in our republic by appointing a special prosecutor, ensuring America’s checks and balances virtues are upheld. Accordingly, let us not forget that no one man or woman is more powerful than the people they serve. “We are a government for the people and by the people” (Lincoln, 1863).