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The present scandals ranging from Fast & Furious to Benghazi to IRS-gate to Reporter-gate to this fiasco of full-scale, Orwellian, police-state surveillance of the American people brings to mind the line from a popular song from a few years back: “You don’t know what you got ’til it’s gone.”
Does anyone still remember this line from one of the greatest American presidents, “government of the people, for the people, by the people”? He also prefaced that with, “[T]his nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom.” Not only in the day-to-day operations of their own lives, but with oversight of the public servants privileged by these informed, engaged citizens to represent, not rule, them. The 2-4-6 rule (my terminology) was designed to prevent precisely what is wrong with our government today – career politicians. The original idea was, go serve a term, then come back to receive approbation or disdain. Do a good job, render intelligent service and we reward you with another term.
And have we also forgotten that freedom of the press was intended to ensure that an informed, engaged citizenry would remain informed and engaged? A free, unbiased citizen-serving press was to investigate and report any aberrations and/or failures of/by those public servants accorded the privilege of serving a free, informed, engaged populace.
Children who were once homeschooled were, in time, sent to public schools where they learned not only reading, writing and arithmetic but true American history – the good, the bad and the ugly. Students were taught the why and wherefore of the American Revolution, learned of “the shot heard ’round the world,” and of heroes like Nathan Hale (“I regret I have but one life to lose for my country”) and even of traitors, like Benedict Arnold.
I wonder how many college students (without the Internet) could recite this information today. Students also knew who Abraham Lincoln was, why America fought a long bloody Civil War and what it all means to every American today. (Care to hazard a guess as to what would be the present economic picture in America today had former slaves been allowed to keep “40 acres and a mule”?)
Somewhere along the path, the average American seems to have been shoved aside to make room for the new model. We seem to be on mad dash to license, not a steady march toward liberty, in the constitutional sense of the term.
Have we somehow forgotten or been brainwashed into failing to remember why America has grown from 13 small struggling colonies to the acknowledged one superpower remaining in the world? Why?
Why do so many people want desperately to come to America (including some 11 million illegal aliens already here)? Remember the words from the song I mentioned earlier, “You don’t know what you got ’til it’s gone”?
We are rapidly losing sight of the very things that made America the greatest country in the world. Our children are in schools dominated by teachers more interested in union benefits than education, teaching a modified form of anti-Americanism. Liberal, left-leaning colleges are turning out students who, in some cases, actually hate America and all it stands for.
We are coming face to face with a generation that seeks not opportunity, but government subsidies for failure. How about welfare programs that include 1) food stamps, 2) Women, Infants, and Children Food Program, 3) the school lunch program, 4) the school breakfast program, 5) Medicaid, 6) public housing, 7) Section 8 housing subsidy program of the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, 8) other housing subsidies, 9) low-income energy assistance, 10) emergency assistance, 11) Head Start, 12) child support funds “passed through” to a welfare parent under the AFDC program, 13) summer youth employment under Title IV of the Job Training Partnership Act, 14) assistance to adults and youth under Title IIA of the Job Training Partnership Act and 15) Earned Income Tax Credit (Volume I: Sourcebook of American State Legislation 1995).
On the other hand, many of our patriotic young men and women who volunteer for military service are sent off to die for freedom in other lands, while here at home students, mostly with failing grades (and non-students), take to the streets at every opportunity to demonstrate against capitalism, the very form of economic principles that made the U.S. the magnet for opportunity-seekers from practically every country in the world.
Does anyone still remember that there are people standing in many lines to come to America? According to a report in the Washington Post, “[T]he wait time for some people could be as long as 24 years.” In fact, “As of November, there were 4.3 million people on the wait list for family based visas and 113,058 waiting for employment-based visas – nearly 4.5 million in the overall backlog.”
I seem to be unable to find a list of the number of people waiting to get out of America.
Could it possibly be that the reason many Americans aren’t standing firm in a commitment to, and support for, America is because not having been anywhere else, they don’t truly realize how fortunate they are to be living in America. Yeah, yeah, I know, it is not perfect; show me a place that is. Show me another place with millions of people waiting to get in and no line of folks wanting/waiting to get out. Show me another place where you can begin in a garage and end up a Bill Gates. Show me another place where people who were once forced to sit on the back of the bus can look up and see one of them sitting in the White House.
America, where “It is self-evident that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. – That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, – That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it.” In other words, it is “We the people,” not some career politicians, are expected to be the guardians of our republic.
Well, like the song says, “Don’t it always seem to go, you don’t know what you got ’til it’s gone, they paved paradise, put up a parking lot.”
Are those bulldozers I hear in the background?