I'm as cynical as they come about U.S. nationalism. I understand that this country is founded in colonialism and slavery, and its promises all carry asterisks, so I was surprised to find the ceremony so moving. I could have done without the overwrought videos about how we're a nation built by and for immigrants—I'm pretty sure those being sworn in could testify better than I ever could that this is not always a nation of open arms—but the joy in the space took over all that. And when the deputy director of the park service gave everyone year passes to Harper's Ferry—"You own this now!"—my cold, dead heart melted just a little bit. In spite of it all, I'm idealistic, and I believe in the ideals of real democracy, even as our approximation is so deeply flawed. And Harper's Ferry, site of John Brown's raid, was integral in the final push to end slavery, and it is hallowed fucking ground. Go there, learn that story, and don't let anyone tell you something different. We all own that, and some of us should still be paying the price for it.