Jasper Johns, Flag, 1955

I was born in the US to an American mother & British father. I was raised in Canada, but spent my young adulthood, and gave birth to my daughter, in the US. I married a Canadian man, and now I live in Canada again, but I still travel on a US passport. In my twenties I engaged in the political process through civil disobedience and activism around issues of peace, environmentalism, feminism, and native land rights. In my thirties my relationship to politics became much more interior and personal. In my forties my engagement with Buddhism brought a completely different perspective towards politics in general, and led me to question the usefulness of the heavy load of anger that had driven much of my political opinion and actions. This complex process of defining my social/political self, and choosing my level and type of involvement in the political process, has always played itself out in relationship to that great entity The United States of America. It's a fascinating journey, this journey of the citizen, and one that continues to engage my will, my compassion, my intellect, my ire, my shame, my pride, and my curiosity. This day has never felt like a day for celebration to me; more like a day for sober reflection. What is this day to you? Tell me.

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