Washington Monument surrounded by American flags

Before I came to Washington I saw myself as a warrior for social justice. Although I was poor myself I believed it was my moral duty to be a voice for the downtrodden and dispossessed. Nevermind if the people I claimed to be speaking for had asked me to be their spokesman. I wanted to be a moral crusader in a noble cause.  

Besides being self-righteous I suffered from low self esteem, I was a victim, I made excuses and blamed society for my misfortune. I wasn’t a man — real men own their choices rather than blame others. I didn’t know it but I had a defeatist mentality, chalking everything bad that happened up to systematic racism, the white man or Republicans. All my life I was told liberals cared about me while Republicans hated me.   

During this period, I was conflicted because I found myself agreeing with the people I was told hated me. I began realizing what’s holding blacks back was liberal white guilt, not Donald Trump or racism. I realized the white liberal is not your friend. Friends would not permit or tolerate drugs, crime, bad parenting and the bad habits that undermine society. A friend tells you the truth even if it offends you.  

America isn’t perfect but you do have freedoms and opportunities not available anywhere else. Although it seems slow and arduous, you can change things in America where in Iran or North Korea people that think differently aren’t celebrated but jailed, tortured or executed. While at times we can be inhumane to foreigners, we rarely turn them away and eventually they assimilate to our nation. 

Everybody has a sad story. A couple of months ago I was diagnosed with high blood pressure. The doctor told me that if I don’t follow directions, I will die. It wasn’t what I wanted to hear but it was the truth. 

I never thought setting standards and goals for yourself was considered conservative.