I love America. I was born here 81 years ago. My grandparents came to this country as immigrants about a hundred years ago and they lived the so-called American dream. They came with nothing and from nothing they built businesses and moved steadily into the middle class. They had children and their children had children and each generation was more educated and more prosperous than those that came before them. They felt safe in this country, and as I write this, on Veterans Day, I recall that they became soldiers to defend the land that they adopted and that had adopted them in return. Their lives were good, with the usual travails of course, but with the knowledge that when things were bad, they could have and would have been far worse had they not settled in this land of the free, and home of them, the brave!
I look back on this Americana with longing for what it has been, a land I long to live in, and whose democratic ways are shared with my other land, my other home, the remarkable State of the Jewish People, Israel. I am the proud bearer of two passports, one from the United States of America and one from the State of Israel. I have lived in Israel off and on since 1973. I know it well and I am at home there, very much so. I have close family there, people I love, and long for. As well, I have close family here in America, people I love. This dichotomy of countries is a constant tug, pulling me to each country when I am in the other. Many many American Jews feel the same longing, the same dissonance of not knowing where to live their lives, and even which nationality to claim. We, my husband and I, have opted for mainly America with another home in Israel. This is easy for us retired folk. Not easy at all for those with younger families. But, we all make decisions about our own lives.
The current political environment in America is dire. Joe Biden shows every sign of becoming a good, or even great, leader to our nation. He’s steady and reliable and a survivor of multiple tragedies; he is compassionate and caring. I backed his election with every fiber of my being, totally opposite from the anathema I feel for our current president. I hold him in disdain for his numerous violations of humanity, courage, propriety and responsible leadership. And on this Veterans Day, it bears remembering that he is not amongst those who served our country with bravery. He did not serve at all. Dodging the draft was what he chose to do! It would be a total disaster if he became president again. Fortunately many millions of voters agreed and, therefore, many rejoiced at his defeat last week. The nightmare is almost over. We will have a new president.
You see, as you’ve heard, this man, this inhumane human being, is trying to overthrow our legal and proper election, for the first time in my lifetime. And he has put fear into the lives of his all too shockingly willing cohorts in our government, who now sing his horrible chant. I think and pray that their efforts will fail and we will soon put our nation back on track. But this is no guarantee.
My husband and I are making a commitment. If the next president of these United States is Trump, we will leave the country, a country filled with the gravestones of our ancestors who came here and helped to build a powerful, strong, decent and moral nation, a nation of beauty, kindness, and leadership, and became a beacon to the underserved of our universe. We are engaged in a battle of unprecedented proportions and if we lose, we seek sanctuary in Israel, our beloved home across the sea.