I think it was on this day in 2010 that my mom and I were at the airport, embarking on our excursion to Europe, where I saw something unique on the TV. Thousands of people had started a new political organization called the Tea Party, and were protesting taxes, since it is tax day in America. For some reason, I found this to be encouraging. I remembered when I was working making about 23,000 a year and 1/3 of my salary went to taxes. Before my dad retired, half his salary went to taxes. I don't remember what he made, but my parents do have money, so I guess the government thought they should have to pay their "fair share." That was why I was encouraged by the protesters. Finally, people had had enough of big government. And they were doing the incredibly unpopular thing and making some noise about it.
I am writing knowing that some people will be angered by my post. But I truly believe in the rights of our country, the only country with these rights. Right to free speech. No other country has this. This was a new and radical idea that our forefathers were determined to make sure that we had, for they came from a land where no one had free speech. You were persecuted if you practiced a different religion from the state. You were arrested if you spoke against the state. People had to do what the government told them to do, there was no freedom.
That's why so many still come here! That's why we are still the greatest country in the world! Our Constitution! Without that, there would be no anchor to hold us, nothing to keep us from folding like a stack of cards to popular opinion.
I have never been popular. My family has never been popular. We were seen as somewhat eccentric, my dad tooling around in his '32 Fords. My parents never acted like they had money, but people somehow found out. They still do. We still get grief about it. So it irritates me to no end when some people lump all rich people together as selfish and greedy. That is just as bad as saying all poor people are lazy,or any other stereotype you can think of. Why is this OK? It is not OK! I am tired of people judging us because of my parent's money!
They earned every cent. My mom was poor growing up. When they married, they didn't even have their own place to live, they lived first with my dad's parents, in a little rambler, then with a relative in the Twin Cities. Their first home was a trailer in a trailer park. Neither got to go to college (my dad did for one semester). But they worked hard, saved their money, and committed themselves for provide for my sister and I a better life than they had.
My parents are generous. They do give. They've helped out many people over the years. Even my friends. Even their bachelor neighbors. Even strangers. They donate to many causes, including vets and homelessness.
I'm not saying all this thinking my parents are perfect and have no faults. We all have faults. But to judge a person solely based on one thing, is stupid. Just because they are successful in this arena, doesn't mean that they don't have problems in any other arena. No one is without problems. No matter how good they look, how much money they have, or how talented they are at something.
I was talking with my Bible study members the other day about how I found what I am passionate about, through trial and error. I volunteered at a homeless shelter and food shelf for a bit, but I hated it, and I had a bad experience. I guess I thought that's what good Christian does, help the poor. But then I realized, every body needs God, even the rich, beautiful, and successful. My point was I needed to find what I was passionate about, what I was good at, and what I enjoyed doing.
I've been wanting to write on this for a long time, knowing that some people have issues with wealth. I don't even like to say rich. It's embarrassing, as some people judge right away and assume the worst. What those people don't realize is that without business people like my dad, there would be no jobs and economy. Granted, there are some really bad business owners. My dad was one of the good. He was fair, honest, rewarded his employees, and helped them whenever he could. He just found something that he was good at, and worked hard at it until he got it. He earned it. I know some people might think well he is white, it's easy for him. No, it wasn't. I don't delude myself into thinking minorities don't have problems, I am a minority, I know I have problems! But to blame those of whom don't have disabilities is ridiculous. Although my parents are white, they had their own problems growing up, of which I won't state here as it is their private lives and not my mine to write about. But they had nothing when they started. Only a dream.
I am proud of my parents. They are the most generous people I know. They have compassion. They have always been there for me. They are committed. They didn't give up. They persevered. And I am blessed to have such parents that taught my sister and I the value of family, morality and money. They are good people, and I love them.