November 26, 2009
A Thanksgiving ResolutionBy Steve McCann
For those who believe in American exceptionalism, individual liberty, and freedom, this has been a dismal twelve months.
The United States has seen its president go around the world denigrating the sacrifices that have freed untold millions and belittling the American inventiveness and can-do spirit that have made lives better for virtually all peoples of the world.
This administration and Congress have unleashed a torrent of spending, threatening to inundate present and future generations with unsustainable debt resulting in a dramatically reduced standard of living and subservience to those who hold our bonds and do not have the nation's or its citizens best interest at heart.
There is underway an attempt to control our day-to-day activities through President Obama's version of health care reform and cap-and-trade. In addition, there are many pending and passed regulations and bills expressly aimed at dramatically expanding the power of unions and federal regulatory agencies at the expense of the individual.
As Thanksgiving approaches, many despair about the future while others continue to live in a bubble of oblivion as to the country they (and not just their children) inhabit.
Recently, during an interview on the Peter Weissbach Show on KVI in Seattle, a caller asked if I knew of any nation in the history of mankind that had ever successfully emerged from the abyss into which we are entering. I did not. However, if any country in the history of mankind can, it is the United States.
We can, as we have a written a Constitution with a mechanism to allow it, not to mention a unique American character.
On March 4, 1789, the Constitution of the United States of America was declared ratified and in effect. Two hundred and twenty years ago, the citizens of this nation were given perhaps the greatest document in history and the means not only to create a great country, but to sustain it against would-be tyrants and oppressors.
The founders of the United States knew of the basic flaw in human nature: the desire to achieve power and control over others. Thus a political and governmental system was set up to deliberately limit the authority of a central government and make the rights of the individual paramount. This system implemented a tripartite governmental structure to allow each citizen to maintain these rights.
Unfortunately, with the unprecedented prosperity we have enjoyed as a nation over the past century, many choose to ignore the first responsibility of citizenship: stay engaged and vigilant against those who would use the power to tax and spend in order to amass authority over the citizenry.
Over this same period, and parallel to the apathy of the populace, a concerted effort has been underway to undermine the basic tenets of the Constitution. The courts, Congress and the executive have succeeded in empowering the central government beyond anything the founders could have countenanced.
However, the power of the individual to be active, organize, and vote is the one area in which these forces cannot overturn the Constitution, nor can they change the basic mindset of the American people, characterized by the desire for freedom and self-determination.
It has always been a source of pride to American families to trace their ancestry and celebrate the courage and determination of their forefathers, whether they came on the Mayflower, arrived by steerage into Ellis Island, or suffered and persevered through forced servitude.
These pioneers injected into the uniquely American character a fierce desire to be independent and free, to be the final arbiter of one's own success or failure. There resides in the soul of this country a deep mistrust of a powerful central government. It stems from the firsthand experience of these immigrants from whom virtually all Americans today descend.
While many are now more dependent on government largess than ever before, this basic character of the American people has not changed. Every poll taken over the past thirty years shows this to be a right-of-center country, a plurality of whom are conservative and fearful of those in Washington, D.C.
We are not amenable to a massive government controlling all aspects of our lives and jeopardizing the futures of our children and grandchildren. Thanks to the advent of the internet, talk radio, and cable news, many are aware as never before of what is happening to their country.
On this Thanksgiving 2009 we can give thanks for living in a nation that alone in the world has a written Constitution empowering the individual, a history of defending that power, and access to information exposing the lies and hypocrisy of those in power.
We have been given the tools, and it is now up to all of us to actively make certain that the United States does not become another entry in the bibliography of the rise and fall of great nations. Instead, let us resolve to be certain that the United States will become the first to successfully step back from the abyss and continue as the foremost country in the history of mankind.
I believe we will.