Published on July 7th, 2013 | by Mannie Ramos0
The Right to be Independent
How many of us take our independence for granted in this country? I hear people say time and time again that they feel like a prisoner in this country or that their rights have been violated. Rights? That’s a strong word within its own right! I have been to many other countries and seen the flip side. I’ve seen people who have no rights, who can only worship one deity, or don’t get to vote in their elections. Yet, here in America we get all these rights. We have the right to vote and the right to worship anything or any god, yet we say that this country is unfair.
I was talking to a good friend of mine who just got back from Dubai. We were discussing the caste-system. If you are not familiar with the caste-system, it basically means whatever socio-economic class you are born into, you will stay in forever… For example, if you are born into poverty, you stay in poverty and vice versa. I think that is why the movie Slumdog Millionaire hit so many people’s hearts because that story is one in a billion. Our country has stories of many individuals who overcame great poverty to change their family’s fortune for generations. We don’t have to stay in poverty if we choose to exercise our rights and work hard.
I believe the biggest rights are the first ones I mentioned. You know what they say, “Don’t ever discuss religion or politics in public because they are such polarizing topics.” In many countries, speaking out against the government can get you thrown in jail or even in some cases, death. In America, we have news channels that can bash our leaders claiming to excercise the first amendment… Religion is an even a more polarizing topic. Let’s take it back to the old Catholic days when you would be tarred or hung for speaking out against the church. In our country, I can worship an animal and still not be persecuted for it. I know that is an extreme example but I love that I can shout from a mountain top that I love Jesus while the person next to me can say I love Buddha. So when reflecting back on how “awful” this country is, think about how many people died, fought, and sacrificed to give us the opportunity to utilize our constitutional rights.
“And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.”