I hate America.

These are the words that those unfortunate enough to be stalking my Facebook page last night saw as I set this photo as my new cover photo.

Of course, as anyone would expect, I was met with both acclaim and criticism for my statement. All of my teenage friends commented like they were in the America-bash-brigade, talking about how terrible a nation America is, whilst my elders infrequently posted their pro-American beliefs. After being ¬†‘enlightened’ about the wonders of America twice, I decided that this simple little summation of my extreme disliking of my nation was not going to lead to the kind of discussion that I approve of – it would simply turn into a shouting match between two immovable sides, the new generation vs. the old, the kids vs. the adults.

Now, so that you all don’t think that I’m simply some sort of anti-America liberal scum (I assure you that I am none of these), I will tell you exactly what I told those who got mad at me, and I think you will find that you completely agree with many of the things on my list.

I hate the blind patriotism, the American exceptionalist attitudes, the failed foreign policies, the detrimental monetary policies, the absolute disdain for freedoms and preserving the Constitution that the American political parties have, the party system in and of itself, the ridiculous lobbying and partisan power plays, the intolerance of other cultures, various lifestyles, and different belief systems, and the general ignorance towards anything not pop-culture that the American populace holds.

Many of these complaints that I hold are held by many of my peers and family members, and even much of mainstream America. I think we can all agree that America is not the greatest nation on Earth – America has fallen from the ideals it once stood for. America does not fight for democracy; America fights for puppet governments that it can control from behind the ¬†curtain. America does not stand for free enterprise; America stands for corporate greed and politicians placed in the pockets of well-paid Wall Street execs who can’t ever seem to get enough. America does not stand for equality; America stands for the guy who has the deepest pockets and the most powerful friends. We all know it’s true. American politics is corrupt. Now, this isn’t to say that we are the worst out there – as someone pointed out in the 65 comments long thread on my picture, America is better than certain countries that came around in the early 90s following the disbanding of the Soviet Union. And I grant that completely. America has a lot of great things going for it. But we had even more great things, and we have dropped our proverbial ball. America is no longer the king of the hill or sitting on the tallest pedestal, and it has not been there for a long time.

I love the ideals my nation was built upon, but I hate the distortion they have undergone in the name of ‘nationalism’ and ‘patriotism’. Delivering freedom on a silver platter to other nations is not something America should do. Giving free passes to the manipulators of America’s economy is not something America should be doing.

I hate America.