In God We Trust. E Pluribus Unum (out of the many, one [motto of the United States]). My Country Right or Wrong. America, Land of the Free, Home of the Brave. America, Home of the Free because of the Brave. My Country ‘tis of Thee.
The above are all precious statements attributed to the United States of America. America is a land and a space on this tiny orb harboring the capability of self-destruction as well as the demolition of any other life with the push of a button. But America‘s shown restraint. America seeks justice. America prays for divine guidance as opposed to believing it alone has all the answers.
We see ourselves as special, unique and exceptional in our moral and social development. We take pride in the fact we became “E pluribus Unum”, a nation of disparate and unique social entities come together and blended to create a nation of similar people seeking a similar goal. We seek the right to exceed others’ expectations of us and succeed or fail in our own right and not in the way selected for us by caste. But at each layer of the American drive and effort to become the best we can be as individuals, there was once the drive and ambition to be free but bonded to our brethren by the citizenship we shared.
We would all be Americans.
Now that goal is obscured. People demand we speak the native tongue of newborn communities where people band together for protection and the promotion of their identity they held in their homeland. People feel removed from the opportunity to advance and move above their social caste. They feel disconnected from the “American Dream” because there will always be some who are unchallenged and unchecked of their prejudices. From this we become “hyphenated Americans”.
“African-Americans, Polish-Americans, Chinese-Americans, Native-Americans” et cetera, et cetera, et cetera, ad infinitum, ad nauseum: all the hyphens diminish the greatness of a nation needing solidarity and a sense of homogeneity denoting a unified contention with the outside world. The goal to differentiate social condition and societal identity in the marrow of the nation is weakening our ability to deny the Machiavellian designs of hostile nations. We appear less than what we are and as such appear susceptible to survival of the fittest.
Because of this insularity, this defensive bonding, we are less than we can be. We’re not as much nor as great as we can be in unity. This allows fears of “those barbarians at the gate”. This could hurt us. We fear the removal of our individuality and identity as a “type” as opposed to being the individual amongst all.
Doyle McManus of the Los Angeles Times, on October 4th 2012 in a copyrighted Op-ed said: “We’re not getting the federal government we deserve. I disagree. We’re getting exactly what we deserve because we keep shifting blame to the President, the Congress, the interferences of politics in the development into domestic and foreign policy. We blame everybody but the real culprit causing us to be distressed and disaffected. That would be us, the average citizenry of this nation.
There has been a steady erosion of citizen participation in the selection of those who’ll represent America in government. Not since 1960 when Kennedy ran successfully against Nixon for the presidency has there been a voter turn-out in excess of 62.8%. We’ve “slept” through elections with turn-out numbers as low as 49.0% in 1996. This is because politicians divide and conquer by pitting one community against another; by targeting the communities’ fears and capitalizing on them.
People believe they have NO voice in government. They believe the lie of Daddy and Mommy and Nanny knowing what’s best for us and we must stay pure in our societal and cultural ethnicity so as to get the best of the worst possible for the job. From this we see half the nation doing without representation because the people it finds are at odds with their ideals are elected and refuse to listen to their ideas and recognize their ideals.
I’d like to close with the best metaphor I can conjure concerning the rugged individualism of the American ideal: the steer wrestler in a rodeo. The cowboy chases the steer (a neutered bull) at a full run, drops from the horse onto the neck and head of the calf. The cowboy exerts strength, power and a recognizable technique to drop the steer to the ground in a controlled exertion of forceful guidance. The cowboy takes command of an adversary seeking regularly to escape control.
That’s what America needs: to take the steer we call government by its horns and control it so the people win. It might not hurt to let the representatives sent to Washington know they can be castrated in the same way to make sure we control them.
Thanks for listening.