My son got sick last Friday. I don’t know what was wrong, just that he woke from a deep sleep screaming and clutching his belly. Maybe it was gas? We couldn’t sooth him, so after 30 minutes of this, I scooped him into my bike and rode to the hospital in my pajamas, phone in one hand, telling them we were coming. They squeezed him in between two already scheduled emergency room visits. After ten minutes of him bawling in the waiting room, a nice doctor of Middle Eastern descent welcomed us into his office. Being 4, my son then decided it was his knee that hurt and not his belly. The doctor checked him out thoroughly, he got the diagnosis of colic and we biked back home. He went to sleep fine after that, so clearly it was just a grumbly tummy. If we had been the US, it would have been multiple hours waiting at the ER and a expensive medical bill even after insurance. I could go on and on about how the government has set up a system that to Americans seems almost magical, but that’s just part of what I like about here. Below are a bunch of reasons why I love Denmark that have little to do with the government.
1) No school shootings or mass shootings. I never have to worry when I send my sweet children to school or go with them to the mall that we might be gunned down.
2) I never have to worry if my children are playing with their black or brown friends that someone is going to randomly call the police on them, accuse their parents of kidnapping my children or any other terrifying racist nonsense.
3)I never have to worry that if my children are spending time with their black or brown friends that a police officer might shoot any of them.
4) I never have to worry if my children marry someone who is black or brown that they will face housing, educational, job or other forms of discrimination. Institutionalized racism isn’t a thing here.
5) There’s no body shaming here. No one will ever judge my children’s clothing choices or physical appearance to their faces.
6) Religion is a private matter here. I don’t have to to worry about people telling my kids that it’s bad that we are Jews, that we’re not Jewish enough or making any judgement on their beliefs.
7) Everyone here reveres children. To say you don’t like kids here is like saying you enjoy murdering kittens. It’s a cornerstone of society. Everyone has a smile or a lollypop for your little tikes.
8) Homosexuality is normalized here. Not participating in gay pride events is considered a black mark on businesses.
9) Genders are equal here. I don’t have to worry about a glass ceiling for my daughter, toxic masculinity for my son or any of the oppressive nonsense that comes with it.
10) Climate change denying is considered as absurd as gravity denying here and everyone is working towards a better future. Provided that the rest of the world screws it up for us despite our best efforts, Denmark will still be habitable in 50 years, even in the most dismal future protections.