We Stand Hand in Hand, Brave Americans

02 Oct 2021

You are in this land because you love this land. You may not like where part of it has been and where part of it seems to want to go, and these parts may annoy you, but that’s like every Thanksgiving dinner. You worry and feel pain and get angry with the people you love because you love them, because you care about them. So we are angry and we seem to be against each other because we are the biggest family with the most different parts. More than any other land that has ever been, we got the most different parts. That’s part of what makes us the biggest, strongest land in the world. A lot of parts with lots of different voices, all shouting at each other over the dinner table. But let’s not forget, we’re still sitting at the table, if we can hear each other’s voices. If we’re shouting over each other, we’re still sitting at the table. And we’re still sitting at the table because we stick by our family. That’s how we came this far. That’s how we all got here. Seems like some of us were always here. Others came here from other lands, and we fought. We all fought to be here. We all fight every day to be here, to stand for this one very big family. Yes, we don’t always do right by each other. Yes, we’ve done bad things, but that’s the thing about family. We need each other to live. Wherever we came from, we took a stand. Together. We take a stand every day we stay in this land.

We are a family made of many families. Numberless families. You can try and number them, but tomorrow your number would be wrong. We can’t hold this many people as numbers in our head, so it’s hard to understand how different we all really are, as different as the cells in our bodies are from each other. Yet all those different cells add up to you, just as all our families add up to this family. But you can feel it in your heart. You know what you feel when you see our flags, when you hear our songs, when you hear the drums of thousands of lands that join together as one here, in this land of lands.

That’s part of our job here, see. We’re a land of explorers. We’re going down a new path, to show all the other lands that they can come together. If we could come together here, with people from all over the world, with ways from all over the place, all coming together, then they can, too. Then the rest of the world can come together, too. So it’s not just us. It’s not just this family, these United States of America. The rest of the world is counting on us to stick together. If we make it, they’ll continue following, as they’ve already begun following. If we break up, that’s it. The world will wait hundreds of years before ever trying to come together again.

Families live or die together. Our world is no different. You’ve seen what can happen now, many times. Well, it can get a lot worse. In fact, we’re in a better place than we’ve ever been, and it can get a whole lot worse. It doesn’t matter what you are afraid of- different parts of us are afraid of different things, but we can all agree that we’re afraid and that there’s good reasons to be afraid. So this is why we’ve got to come together. In the most dangerous times, it’s not what we have or what we’ve done that gets us through. It’s people that get us through dangerous times. It’s us, lending a hand where it’s needed, pushing where it’s needed, pulling where it’s needed, and yes, even shouting at each other when it’s needed. We didn’t have much when we got here. We hadn’t done much until we started building this land up, but we did come together. And together, we showed the world what was possible. A land where, if you could take it, you could have space to stand and breathe easy. It’s easy to forget how much that’s worth, until you go somewhere else and see what it’s like without it. There is no price to make up for how much that’s worth.

You are all braver than you know. Brave enough for us to stand together, to face our pain, to hold a hand out even as we quiver in fear, to stand even when we’re shouted at and cursed, to hold the line even when it seems like our lines are wavering. You know how this goes. You’ve seen it a thousand times. The heroes doubt as they fall into darkness- but that’s the time. That’s the time to come together, to crawl on our hands and knees in the dark, and find our way to sunlight.

The world is watching. No other land will step up. It’s still on us. It’s still on you to guide them out, and we do that by turning to those right next to us and breathing with them. Whatever hard things we face- and we will face harder things than ever before- that’s what happens when you get stronger- whatever hard things we face, we can only face them together.