March 1, 2009
Deliver Us from FearBy Jeffrey A. Rendall
Just listen to liberal politicians today, and one common theme shines through -- fear. They speak of an unfettered and corrupted capitalist system, of society's downtrodden and forgotten, and even of an unjust and baseless war. But lost in all their rhetoric is the fact that fear isn't theirs and theirs alone.
Face it, we're one scared country.
Most people would say we began losing our way in September of 2001, but I'd argue it started well before that. We've basically lived in fear of society's deterioration since the end of World War II, when the United States emerged as a nuclear superpower, and became the target of various governments, dictatorships, religions and political ideologies pinpointing America as an evil influence on the world.
Then the forces of the cultural left sprouted in our own country, telling us our post-war society was sexist, racist and imperialistic. They told us our moralistically conservative parents were paternalistic, old-fashioned and sexually repressed. That the older generation just didn't understand what was truly evil, despite having defeated Hitler, Hirohito and Mussolini. These people said you can't trust anyone over 30. They promoted fear as an instrument of social change.
They preached that it was acceptable to take to the streets to violently protest governmental decisions, riot on campuses and burn draft cards. They said it was okay for women to abort their unborn children, because pregnancy was a weapon of male subjugation. All in the name of fear-that someone, somewhere, wants to compel you to fight a war, or force you to have a baby that you don't want, or keep you socially repressed.
They said the status quo was bad. Holding and honoring traditions was paying homage to an outdated way of life, where the Founding Fathers were a collection of slaveholding hypocrites, and the ideals of Americanism should be replaced by forced economic equality and a socially judgment-free government. The old ways should be feared, because they'd only be perpetuated if remembered. To the left, anarchy is better than traditional values.
These same people tell us that God's a threat, too. He doesn't belong in the classroom, at graduation ceremonies, football games or public functions. Putting the Ten Commandments on a schoolroom wall is somehow threatening to the students-but it's perfectly okay to let them view pornography or violent television and movies over the airwaves (because free speech is good, when it's a liberal cause-it's expression).
The fear's only gotten worse in recent years, it seems, as more and more stability is taken away from America. We've lived through over seven years of war in the Middle East, thousands of American deaths and images of Muslim savagery (mostly towards other Muslims). We were warned of weapons of mass destruction that never materialized. We've been brow-beaten by politicians in both parties who've said the whole cause is a waste of blood and material.
Our culture and society is being held hostage by a small minority of liberal politicians, judges and public figures. Where we once feared tyranny of the majority, it's now tyranny of the minority, and we're told that's alright, in the name of diversity of ideas.
We live in fear because terrorists have infiltrated our society, and exploit it. We live in fear because morally deprived criminals cross our unprotected borders intent on doing us harm without reason or justification. We live in fear because we're told our economy's in the tank.
And our economy is unstable because we live in fear. Many feel powerless to do anything about it.
Fear is our constant companion because there isn't a sufficient moral foundation to combat it. The solution seems so simple: fight back against the evildoers, punish them, and serve justice. Live in freedom and self-reliance. Work hard, and expect others to do the same. Respect others' opinions, debate honestly, and work to do what's right, not just what feels good, or is politically expedient. Fight the fear, before the fear paralyzes us.
Fear's a psychological phenomenon, but it's gripping the American culture. We fear the unknown, because we're not entirely sure justice will be brought to those who do wrong. Why? Because we're told that our punishments are cruel and inhumane. That the world community might not approve. We're afraid that, as victims, we'll never quite feel whole again, because the harbingers of fear won't allow it.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt once said we've got "nothing to fear, but fear itself." But in today's society, that means we've got plenty to fear. And why?
Because we're constantly reminded that we should be afraid. That if we don't do this, then that will happen. If we don't wait for world approval, then we'll be alone. If we don't feed the hungry, they'll starve. If we don't grant amnesty to illegal immigrants, then we're racists and bigots, and that we're not ‘doing the right thing.'
We've got a media culture that feeds off fear. And a political culture (at least half of it anyway), that says if the government doesn't help someone, then he'll perish. We're being lectured like children to conform or die.
Fortunately, all is not lost. Conservatives are gathering to combat the problems in government and our culture. As the furious conservative condemnation of the Obama-Pelosi Stimulus Bill demonstrates, our voices are uniting and being heeded in the highest levels of government. A mobilized and motivated conservative base is beginning to sense its own power - and that even with powerful forces organized against it, that the Constitution will one day prevail.
Just as Ronald Reagan stood as a stable force in the face of the Soviet Union, and ended the Cold War, conservatives will continue to fight for ourselves and for America. For if we're vigilant in fighting what threatens us, both internally and externally, then we'll no longer feel afraid.
And finally, after decades of dwelling in fear's darkness, we'll finally see the light.
Jeffrey A. Rendall is a freelance writer living just far enough outside the beltway for comfort in Manassas, Virginia.