Cons have this cute little conversation-stopper they use when liberals and progressives are demanding improvements to America. "Love it or leave it!" they crow.
As if wanting to improve something means you don't love it.
As if love means never questioning your country.
"Love it or leave it."
What if we did?
What if we decided that, yes, the fact that America isn't perfect means we shouldn't live here anymore? What if every single liberal packed up and moved to a country with a saner political system tomorrow? What if we left America to the cons who "love" her?
I hope the cons didn't love America for her blue skies and clean water. We progressives were the ones who ensured that those things were protected. The Republicons, with their big bidness buddies, will take all of the brakes off of pollution - Beijing's air will start to look downright breathable compared to what will be left here. And it's very hard to drink the water when it's so polluted you can set it on fire, FYI.
I hope the cons didn't love America for her abundant wildlife, her hunting and fishing, her wilderness. Because the Republicons, with their big bidness buddies, want to fill that wilderness with coal mines and oil wells and leave nothing but toxic waste behind. They'll be happy to blast mountains apart and chop down every tree. Last I checked, the salmon and trout and deer and bears don't rent apartments in city centers. And the cons will learn soon enough that the caribou love of oil pipelines is nothing more than a myth. They'll find out just how much the progressives protected for their shooting pleasure.
I hope the cons didn't love America for her opportunity. For every self-made man who becomes a multi-millionaire, there will be thousands toiling at thankless jobs, without the education or the assistance to have a shot at pulling themselves toward the upper middle. And those thankless jobs won't include a minimum wage, so you'd best hope the corporate overlords will somehow find a heart and pay you enough to survive on. Don't count on it, though - all of those whose compassion trumps their greed will have left. (That's assuming all of the jobs haven't been shipped overseas, mind you.)
I hope the cons didn't love their Social Security, their health insurance, or any other program that the Republicons want to privatize. The progressives have tried to ensure that the government programs that keep us from starving or dying of preventable disease aren't eviscerated. We won't be here to save them.
I hope the cons didn't love America for her innovation. The Republicons have never been fond of either funding or teaching science. The progressives have ensured that science education maintains some reasonable standards, and that science has money to innovate. Without us here, creationism will rule the schools, science funding will dry up, and Americans won't be able to compete globally against people who have the education and the science to invent.
I hope the cons didn't love America for her Constitution, or her freedoms, or her democracy. Without the progressives to protect those things, they won't survive as anything more than a memory.
I hope the cons didn't love America for her preeminent place in the world. After a few years of unfettered Republicon rule, America will be nothing more than a has-been bully. And she does not have the military might to bomb every nation into submission.
If everyone who loves America enough to want to make her the best she can be leaves tomorrow, there soon won't be much left of her for the cons to love. Where would your "love it or leave it" rhetoric be then?
You'd better be godsdamned grateful we love America enough to stay.