All that has been endured, and we come to this, life is frozen, yet somehow we struggle to keep up. If we all see clearly, then how is it that we see such different roads to follow, different trials, different goals, and different beliefs. Why is it so hard to change and grow? The world is stopped. Yet time is biting at our heels. Nowhere to go, no time to stop. Nowhere to study. All the time to learn.

All that has been endured. To crumble at the hand of a neighbor, a friend, even family. Wearing armor to see a companion. Is this what we fought, dreamed, and died for? Is this our home? Is this our dream? Is this the person we chose to follow? We came so far. And all we see is death.

All that has been endured in struggles with countries and terrorists, and all we can do is harm each other. Is that how we honor our fallen heroes? Those who fought so we can be united? What is patriotism? Loud colors and shouts of hate at those with whom we disagree? Because that is what I see, and that is what I hear.

All that we have endured. For once in this new year, can I be given a direct answer? What does America stand for? Do we simply not believe what we do not want to hear? Must we decide who to save and who to let die? The past year of perfect vision has left me blinded by the darkness I saw. Perfect vision has shown us what we, America, have become. Shattered, broken glass under the strain of patience. Not loyal enough to care, too loyal to see, trapped in a state of mind they have ensnared themselves in.

No place to go, the world is frozen. Time waits for no one. Please stop and think of all that has been endured as we go into this new year.


Karolina Rahko, age 14

Grand Rapids


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