Strangers in our Homeland
America is the product of centuries of evolutionary political thought centered on natural human rights. Radical leftists now assault this land its patriots love, turning it into a place they scarcely recognize.
A revolutionary declaration
Two hundred forty-four years ago the world experienced a singular and unparalleled transformative event.
It was 1776 and the start of the birthing of the American Union, founded on exacting principles asserted in the Declaration of Independence. These principles were a bold repudiation of the dominant organizing schema of nation-states, principalities, kingdoms, and empires, as they had existed since the dawn of history. It was the American Revolution.
There was, of course, the physical revolution, the revolt that started a year before at Lexington and Concord, when a volunteer militia confronted the crack soldiery of Britain’s world-class seasoned army. That conflict was fought with steel, gunpowder, lead, blood, and bravery. But the real revolution was an idea, articulated in these words:
We hold these truths to be 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.
Invention and purpose of government
The primordial seeds of government are lost in the dusts of antiquity. But we can contemplate the emergence of primitive societies from the hardscrabble hunter-gatherer existence of the first humans. As societies evolved, they reaped the benefits of specialization, becoming able to transform raw materials efficiently into finished goods. Accumulations of goods represented amassing of wealth, with surpluses available to trade for goods from other populations. Enter free enterprise and the free market.
But accumulations would inspire covetousness, requiring civil order to guard against theft within a society, and against invasion and piracy from without. Protective and administrative functions devoted to commonweal and cohesion of societies would form the moral charter of government.
Being human creations, they naturally came as mixtures of human virtues and failings. Power and wealth would inure to the powerful and unscrupulous, who would rule the subjects arbitrarily. This was the dominant political order in Europe – a mix of royalty, nobility, and manifestations of the Christian church – as seventeenth-century English colonists began settling on the east coast of North America. The main drivers for this migration were the shortage of economic opportunity and the stifling of religious freedom in the homeland.
The colonial experiment
Building a robust society in an undeveloped wilderness imposed formidable challenges for these settlements, far removed from the support of the parent country. But through disciplined hard work the colonists developed initiative, agency, and competence in managing their affairs and in trading with other colonies, foreign countries, and the parent nation.
In their colonial laboratory, the founders forged operational independence and self-rule as a fait accompli, long before they would assert formal legal independence. This was the essential ingredient that would serve the new nation well in ensuing generations.
America’s contract with its citizens
While the Declaration conveyed the spirit of the new nation, expressed in self-evident truths, the Constitution of the United States formed the enabling instrument, the granite fortress enshrining that spirit. Its Preamble unequivocally states its purpose:
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
The ensuing Articles define an ingeniously-crafted limited federal government possessing only those powers ceded to it voluntarily by the states and their sovereign citizens, and avoiding concentrations of power that inevitably lead to abuse.
This is America’s foundational contract with its citizens. The federation will protect Americans’ natural rights to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness, while the citizens will live lives morally and responsibly, according to the tenets of ordered liberty. There is no guarantee of success in those pursuits, only the guarantee that government will not arbitrarily impede the attainment of success.
This was the essential formula. Freed from archaic feudal restrictions and obligations, Americans would grow their fledgling nation to become the greatest national success in the history of the world. With resolve, discipline, ingenuity, and a hearty can-do spirit, they built a nation ocean-to-ocean, establishing towns, cities, farms, mines, factories, highways, rail lines, airports, schools, universities, and playgrounds. America led the world in science, arts, invention, technology, and manufacturing. With diplomacy and military might it became a beacon for peace in the world, and when peace was tormented, it saved Europe from itself twice in two despicable wars.
And it was an American who made that “One giant leap for mankind.”
The snake invades the garden
First it was the soft socialism of progressivism that infiltrated the American consciousness with utopian promises of comfort and wealth for the masses through social engineering and centralized economic control. It was political snake oil, whispering seductively that economic happiness might be attainable without actually having to invest sweat equity to pursue it.
This softened the American psyche, ripening it for attack by the Cultural Marxists, with their nihilistic pseudo-religion, Critical Theory. The proponents of this noxious movement seek to destroy every institution, tradition, and principle that made America successful, and by any means necessary. In today’s tumultuous times, they have established a beachhead, shoving their morally-inverted Brave New World of good is bad, bad is good, legal is abusive, illegal is just, fairness is unfair, and unfairness is reasonable into the minds of the gullible. The malignancy has swept the academic world, the news media, the entertainment industry, the ruling establishment, and the power-crazed Democratic Party.
“America as founded is fundamentally corrupt, racist, and evil,” goes the Big Lie preached by these demagogues and parroted by their throngs of useful idiots. Its system of economic and personal freedom for all must be torn down and rebuilt as a bastion of socialism and radical egalitarianism.
Hidden behind that Big Lie is the Bigger Truth that under socialism, life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness are erased, supplanted with mass murder of citizenry, slavery to the state, and equal-opportunity misery. Only the elite enjoy the rewards, that they cull dishonestly. Such would be a return to the abusive rule the colonists fled and what the founders strove to avert.
Instead of free speech, we have cancel culture. Instead of domestic tranquility it’s riots, fires, and looting. Rather than religious freedom it’s “Get your Ten Commandments out of our public square!” Adopting a strong work ethic is “white privilege.” Attach a politically-incorrect bumper sticker and get one’s car keyed – or worse. Objective justice is banished for arbitrary “social justice.” When one side loses a political contest it concedes graciously; when the other side loses it mounts a coup d'état. The list goes on.
Today’s patriots grew up on traditional principles: civic responsibility, the difference between right and wrong, cultivating marketable skills, and valuing discipline and hard work. They’ve prepared themselves for following the American success formula, as did their forebears. But now they find their heritage hijacked by these philosophical pirates, pushing a cheesy counterfeit that can never rival the American system of freedom.
We have become strangers in a caricature of our homeland.
But we don’t have to accept it. As patriots, we know and treasure our precious heritage, centuries in the making, and must spare no effort to neutralize, without apology, the pernicious works of these demagogues, the real trespassers.