I am overwhelmed with how thankful I am today to be an American. I felt led to just write a little out to the people I love most.
I was a sophomore in high school on 9/11/01, and I saw the 2nd plane hit during my Calculus class. My teacher's daughter was in NYC that day, and she couldn't gain her composure, not knowing where her daughter was. She couldn't teach us, she couldn't keep her eyes off the tv, and she called her daughter's cell phone constantly during our hour-long class. We were young and self-involved, but we knew this was a big deal.
Do you know that more people vote for American Idol in 1 week than they do for primary elections? Collectively over 1 season, the votes total more than just 1 Presidential election. I know my generation has messed up. We care about materialistic things (dubbed the "iPod generation"), and we are still very self-involved. However, we are a passionate generation. I am one of those passionate people!
I am a very proud Texan. I thank my Mom and Dad for teaching me along the way that there are really only 2 states in the US - Texas and the rest. I never want to live anywhere else. When I started at Texas Tech, I became an extremely proud Red Raider, and I still am. Being a Texan and a Red Raider are two parts of my identity that I value very much.
However, today I think about how proud I am to also be an American. I am proud of what our country stands for. I am proud that I have voted in EVERY election, primary and otherwise since I turned 18. I am proud that I personally know 2 men who are great, brave, and courageous who have stood up for 300 million people they do not know and have entered the military to protect and serve us. I tear up every time I hear a song, speech, or see a tv special about men and women in the military. I support the troops with all that I have. It is the very least I can do for them.
I will say I disagree with Washington on many levels, but I love being an American. I still feel overwhelmed when I hear a Presidential speech. It would be an honor to just be in the room with a current or past President (on either side of the ticket) because I feel the same passions for our country that they do. As I wrap up, I want to just say: Remember the people who lost loved ones that day. I cannot imagine what it must feel like. Honor the police force, fire department, military men and women, and our nation's leaders.
That is absolutely the least we can do for them.