But this goes out to the negatroids who like to sketch a picture of a country circling the drain, of people fed up, demoralized, furious at the government, despairing at losing their freedom; or otherwise (from the racist moonbat wing) lazy, no-good, dark-skinned, immigrant thieves (like our President).
If you spend much time in or around some of the birther or extremist right-wing forums, you might have been as (pleasantly) surprised as we were as we went through the otherwise horrendous, grief-stricken process of bringing our adored 6-year-old basenji for veterinary treatment of a sudden illness, only to have to say goodbye to her 5 days later after an operation and a transfusion, all for naught.
In those 5 days we met and dealt with more than a dozen animal care specialists, technicians, receptionists, doctors, interns, and trainees, at two separate facilities. Every one of them was 110% attentive, respectful, intelligent, hard-working, committed, caring, professional, and capable. It's actually hard for me to put this into words; the experience was like parachuting into a different America from the one we see through the eyes of the nutjobs, keyboard warriors, and Beck's 9/12 folks.
These men and women were working 12-hour shifts. They called with updates and test results exactly when promised (e.g., 2 a.m., 6 a.m.) -- without exception. They gave thorough information, and advice when asked. They thought laterally and solved problems. They were gentle and caring. They handled the most difficult of issues (elective euthanasia) with finesse. When we transferred our dear dog from one facility to the other, the packet of papers that was her file after just 30 hours of care ran to 13 pages, including the transcript of the ultrasound technician's running commentary.
They constantly dealt with other incoming emergencies, while making us feel like our case was the most important and our dog the best dog in the history of dogdom (she was).
I know, intuitively, the same qualities exist everywhere, from hospitals to bricklayers to software engineers to schools. It was just so heartening to experience it under such stressful conditions.
Here's to American heroes, and heroes everywhere, who live their lives fully, honestly, and make a positive difference in the world every friggin day.