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America must find its soul

The closeness of this presidential race is about more than Joe Biden and Donald Trump. It’s about who we are and want to be.

Kamil Krzaczynski/AFP via Getty Images)

As the nation still wrestles over the presidential election, and lawyers open cases for recounts and legitimizing of ballots, what must not be missed is that Donald Trump’s base has grown over the last four years.

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Trump’s mean-spiritedness, consistent lies, poor treatment of immigrants, name-calling, demonizing and shaming, support of white supremacists, denial of global warming, racist behavior and alleged sexual assault of dozens of women have, in fact, grown his base! More people voted for Trump this year than in 2016.

The closeness of this presidential race exposes our country for who we really are. It points to an America that is seemingly comfortable with supremacy, social inequality, injustice, poverty and racism.

The closeness of this race tells us that America is not only comfortable with these realities, but has normalized them. It’s also a glaring condemnation of faith communities, no matter their affiliation, that have failed in their charge to be a moral compass. All of this has unfolded on their watch and during their silence.

No matter who sits in the White House, the question before America is who do we want to be. We must acknowledge we are a country birthed in genocide, built on slavery, and seemingly committed to supremacy.

And we must acknowledge that superficial symbolic acts such as removing a flag, a statue, a face on a box of rice, will never be enough. We must have the courage to look within ourselves and acknowledge the sin in our very DNA. We must commit to doing whatever is necessary to find our soul. We must build an America that lives up to its pledge of creating a more perfect union, established in justice, guaranteeing life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness to every person.

Enough with “Make America Great Again.” America has never been great for all of its people. But it’s time for her to be!

Rev. Michael L. Pfleger, pastor, Faith Community of Saint Sabina

No longer gullible

Years ago, being a gullible young lad, I listened to the politicians explain how the new Illinois income tax was going to cure all of the state’s financial problems. It was going to clear up the deficit and keep the state financially in the black for decades to come.

Here we are, more than 50 years later. Our state is approaching $8 billion in debts, and the state tax rate is larger than it was originally. As the old adage goes, “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me!”

Michael A Natali, Streamwood