September 3, 2010
The Legacy Will Not Be BetrayedBy Steve McCann
The Obama administration, the Democrats in Congress, the media, and the rest of the Progressive establishment are shocked and surprised by the depth of reaction the majority of the American people have displayed against their statist ideology, as personified by the "Restoring Honor" rally and the overwhelming success of the Tea Party movement. The left's lashing out on a personal level and reversion to playground name-calling exemplifies the depth of their astonishment.
The current governing class had assumed that since the president had garnered over 69 million votes in the past election (53% of the votes cast), the American people had given him and his party a free hand to transform the country. Never mind that the votes Mr. Obama received accounted for only 30% of the voting-age population in the country, and many voted for him thinking he was the moderate he proclaimed himself to be during his campaign for president.
It is apparent that Mr. Obama, his advisors, the leaders of the Democratic Party, and the so-called intellectuals on the left appear to have little or no understanding of why the Euro-socialist utopia they envision will never be accepted by the American people. Had these elites gotten beyond their own sense of superiority and God-given right to lead, they would have understood that the basic nature of the American society is unlike that of any other nation in the world
Throughout the history of mankind, strong centralized governments have dominated those societies whose makeup was primarily a single ethnic group and who had little or no history of independence or popular uprisings (e.g., Russia, China, various Arab countries). So too for modern-day Marxism or socialism, those nations in today's world living under various manifestations of socialism are similarly formulated. A docile and willing public is essential for the acceptance of an authoritarian government.
In 1782, a French immigrant to the United States, Michel Guillaume Jean de Crèvecoeur, in his notable essays "Letters from an American Farmer," wrote of his newly adopted country:
What then is the American, this new man? He is either a European or the descendant of a European, hence that strange mixture of blood, which you will find in no other country.... Here individuals of all nations are melted into a new race of men, whose labors and posterity will one day cause great changes in the world.
The population of the country has increased nearly a hundredfold (3.9 million to 310 million) since those words were first written 228 years ago. The "new race of men" now includes those from all corners of the world, and their labor and posterity have in fact caused great changes for the better in the world. It has become a source of pride in American families to trace their ancestry and celebrate the courage and determination of their forefathers; whether they came on the Mayflower, sailed by steerage to Ellis Island, or suffered and persevered through forced servitude or slavery.
These pioneers injected into the uniquely American character a fierce desire to be independent, free, and the final arbiter of one's own success or failure. Morality, religion, and the necessity of honor and integrity became a fundamental building block of the nation. There resides deep within the soul of this country a profound mistrust of a powerful central government, which stems from the firsthand experience of these immigrants from whom virtually all Americans today descend.
Over the past sixty years, as the United States became the wealthiest and most powerful country on the face of the earth, another trait unique to the American people came to the fore: a genuine sense of generosity and fair play. All were willing to accept the notion that the individual (and the government to a much smaller degree) should help those in need and give the downtrodden a leg up. Unfortunately, this characteristic has been exploited by the left, who desire to transform the country into a socialist utopia (governed by them, of course).
The stratagem used was to foster guilt for one's success, substitute government for individual charity, and declare as rights those things that only government would guarantee. As long as the future of the nation did not appear to be in real jeopardy and it could, on the surface, afford this spending, many simply chose to drop out of active participation in governance while others, in smaller numbers, chose to accept the largess.
This did not mean, however, that the basic character of the American people, as instilled by their forebears, had changed to become amenable to a massive central government controlling all aspects of their lives while jeopardizing the future of their children and grandchildren.
By its dishonesty, unbridled spending, and headlong drive to control the day-to-day activities of all Americans, the Obama administration has at last awakened those who chose to sit on the sidelines and merely observe while assuming the country was too big and rich to fail.
Now, even the least involved of our fellow citizens has begun to realize we have embarked on a path that will in due course bankrupt the country, leave the most personal decisions in matters of life and death in the hands of faceless bureaucrats, and make us vulnerable to those who wish us harm. It is now apparent to many that the survival of a great nation depends in its ability to remain master of its destiny, and that capability is now in question in America.
With the levers of power in Washington now controlled by one party and that party controlled by its radical element, many of these transformative policies have been forced upon the American people. The Obama administration and Congress have done so out of fidelity to their admiration of Euro-socialism and to maintain an air of invincibility for the president.
The passage of health care reform, and its massive nod toward government control coupled with the profligate tax-and-spend agenda, and a myriad of oppressive laws and regulations will be difficult to roll back, but this country has faced many challenges over its history, including some that nearly destroyed it.
I have seen firsthand the sacrifices, determination, and leadership exhibited by the American people in defeating the Axis Powers during World War II, thus freeing millions from tyranny and certain death, rebuilding entire countries, and above all, showing the world the true power of liberty and freedom.
The American people will also rise to the challenge of overcoming what this administration, Congress, and the left-wing establishment have done to this country. In doing so, they will invoke the now-faded image of the masses at Ellis Island, the bent-over figures of those in the cotton fields, the determination of soldiers facing certain death, and all the men and women who made this the greatest and most unique country in the history of mankind. The legacy left to today's generations by these pioneers will not be betrayed. It is, after all, who we are.