“I pledge allegiance to the flag, of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands. One nation, under God, with liberty and justice for all.”
It’s been more than a few years since I’ve stood next to a desk with my right hand over my heart and recited the pledge, but it’s engrained so deeply, I can type it from memory some 30+ years later.
With liberty and justice for all.
Yes, we’ve failed in it. Fell short of it even back when we were writing “all men are created equal”.
But the promise. The promise of it sure is beautiful.
*If you want to keep the star spangled, purple mountain majesty vibes you should stop reading.*
I’m currently reading a book, Monsters by Claire Dederer. In it, she talks about art, and the flawed people who create it. As a critic, she wants to know the calculus of whether and how we can separate the good of what was created from the stain left by a deeply flawed artist. As we celebrate the birth of our nation, amidst Supreme Court decisions that have me in my feelings, I’m wondering the same thing about the US.
We are a country founded by men who owned men, who didn’t even consider women, who murdered and oppressed nations of people who lived and died here long before our country existed. How do we separate the good, the promise, from the stain left by these men? Can we?
I have no answers. I have a lot of doubts.