I really think that most of my life I have been a "romantic". Romanticism is a child-like belief in "love". Love conquers all. All the world needs now is "love sweet love". Love will make everything all right. If one just learns to love enough, then others will love in return. These are childish imaginings, built on a childish hope for "peace and goodwill to all men"..l
I have come to understand that "love" is not the exchange rate of life in this world and humans don't Love unless they know. Love is a personal word, unlike justice.
Justice is an aspect of love that seeks equality under law, respect, dignity, and value to all people. Justice is blind to difference, because difference in race, religion or "creed of life" are not evaluated in "justice's eyes". Justice is what anyone seeks for "self" and what we need to seek for others. But, justice is measured by law, as laws define and protect justice. Love fulfills the law, because love will not break the law in regards to another's difference of value or choice. Justice is moral because it seeks to give freedom for choice.
While justice is the side to love that is universal, mercy is the side that is personal. Mercy is shown in tangible ways to those whose needs vary. Mercy is not blind, as it sees clearly what the needs are and seeks to meet them. Mercy gives freedom, because it respects another's need for dignity in private moments of despair and discouragement. Mercy reaches out. but doesn't demand to serve or demean in service. Mercy is respectful.
Love is not romanticized in these values of justice or mercy. Justice and mercy seek to alleviate pain, benefit the whole and rectify the wrong.
While I have given up hope for romanticized love, in happily ever afters, as there are no "ever afters". I haven't given up on justice or mercy. While mercy doesn't appeal to me as much now, as justice once didn't in the past, I have come to understand and appreciate justice above all, as I have understood the importance of distinctions, values, and the history of our country. I have become fascinated by things that once were cold hard facts. Now, I live and love history.
I am grateful for my country and the values of freedom and justice for all, as I believe these are values that all people should experience, but most do not. I am so grateful to live in the land of the free and the home of the brave, that seeks to rectify the differences of experiencing freedom and justice for all.