My dad grew up in Cyprus and realized early on that his education was his ticket out.He came to the States on a Fulbright scholarship with almost nothing in his pocket, and he studied hard. I can go to church where I want, marry who I want, be who I want to be without fear of being persecuted by the government. It’s heartbreaking to watch the news every day and hear about another act of violence or crime.
When asked about America’s future, he reflected on the fear, the fright and the might we have at our disposal, no matter where we may be in the world.
The next time I’m asked why I left the States if they’re so great, or what I think about A, B or C in the USA, I will channel my inner Barack Obama and be bold:1. The America I know gave me the opportunities to pursue my dreams across the sea.4.
He worked hard to create a life he could only dream of back in the village he grew up in, and he took my well-educated, badass mom along for the ride.
Nearly 40 years later, my family collectively has seven degrees (four Bachelor’s, two Ph Ds, one Ms C), zero debt and one paid-off home to our name.
We have many problems, but we can fix them a lot easier than other countries. Those are just a few reasons why I am proud to be an American.
The United States includes all of the fifty states and they are united, which means we will work together and accomplish anything.During my time as Miss America’s Outstanding Teen I got to travel all over the nation, and it was incredible to see all the different customs that vary from state to state and even city to city! At least according to our neighbors across the pond. It’s taken a long time to get to this point, but celebrating those freedoms is a huge privilege. It’s easy to complain about the economy and healthcare, and say that this nation will never get things figured out. I’ll never forget being in second grade and watching the attacks on the Twin Towers in 2001. "The most killer question I get asked as of late is, "Would you permanently stay abroad if Donald Trump gets elected? Well, I will as long as this petition remains in place, banning the man from ever stepping foot into this Kingdom. While the first few inquiries may require a brief refresher course through my US government class notes, that last one about Donald Trump really gets me going. ""Is it true that the states are still split ideologically like they were during the Civil War?As an American living abroad in the United Kingdom, I find myself constantly answering a barrage of questions about my homeland."Is it really like the movies? Why does your country incarcerate more humans than any other country in the world? Why do some people think the solution to stop people from killing people with guns is to simply supply them with more guns? Why are people so opposed to affordable healthcare? I sat in the library 90 percent of my time."Is Ohio next to Texas? Being an American abroad is like constantly having to be the sole mouthpiece, cheerleader, representative and sponsor of our country of nearly 320 million people.(And I thought the population of my alma mater, Ohio State University, was scary at around 65,000 students.)On any random day in rainy London, as soon as you hear my Midwestern twang — you can apparently take the girl out of Ohio, but never the Ohio out of the girl — I find myself facing questions like:1.No, I am not an egotistical, arrogant American tooting my horn all over England or the globe. This is my own little pledge allegiance: I, Alexandra Marie Constantinou, am proud to be American because despite it all, I believe in (and voted for) our current president, whom I wholeheartedly see giving a damn every day.No matter what party you support, you’ve got to give the man credit for his cleverness.Let's take a moment to really be grateful for some of the things we are able to enjoy as American citizens. As our nation celebrates it’s 238th year of independence, I just wanted to celebrate some of my favorite things about this country I call home. There’s nothing I love more than creativity and the drive to make it reality. We kind of rule the Internet in terms of strange things. But instead of looking at these difficulties as the end all be all, I believe there are still people that are willing to see the opportunity within them. As devastated and terrified as I was at that young age, I took comfort in watching how people who were once divided by different ideas and beliefs lay them to the side and stand together in their suffering.