It's the Fourth of July and I've been humming "God Bless America" in the car, unironically. I think this is the time that America needs as many blessings as possible. I'm thinking of my American children, my American family and friends, and of the happy, happy day that this is. Los Angeles is filled with families grilling up a storm in the local parks, playing ball, going to the beach, eating corn and watermelon and potato salad, hanging at the beach, dressing up their dogs in red, white and blue (well perhaps it's just me that does that). My daughter is in Martha's Vineyard with her closest friends; my son is in Aspen with his girlfriends family, and is sending photos of jumping into mountain lakes and paddle boarding down gorgeous lakes, the mountains framing them from behind. And we're in the Chiltern Hills, my American girls and me, thinking about Springsteen, and the Hollywood Bowl, and fireworks at the beach at Marina del Rey, of red plastic cups, and Sousa marches, and carnitas. We have artichokes, some corn to grill, hamburgers and some lovely sweet peaches for a cobbler.
I have watched with dismay as this untruthful, uncurious, narcissistic idiot of a leader we have unleash all the ugliness in the land. He has brought out the worst in us, no better angels, just our most base and fearful instincts. He relishes his divisiveness. He likes to turn people against other people. He disrespects the press, our constitution, basic human values. He only cares about the bottom line. We have an environmental crisis that cannot be reversed and a humanitarian crisis and a rise in fascism that has not existed since pre-WWII. There has never been a better time to stand up and be counted. I am becoming an American citizen. Finally. I've filed my paperwork and I will use my vote and and my voice to stand up for what I and most of the people I know care about. I don't think this is about politics any more; it's about basic human rights. America is better than this.
So my wish for this Fourth, beyond potato salad and corn, is that we stand together, arm in arm, all colors and creeds and genders, and unite the country with love again. Love is the only way.