We Are Not Victims unless We Choose to Be
I get a lot of email along the following lines:
- The Dems have corrupted our elections — our vote will never matter again.
- We'll never see justice from our DoJ — the system is rigged against us.
- We can't fight the federal bureaucracy — it controls everything.
- We'll never get out from under all of this debt — collapse is imminent.
- A return to founding principles is hopeless — poor, poor, pitiful me.
Granted, it isn't all conservatives saying these things, but an alarming number are starting to sound as though they're accepting victimhood. The left is quite happy about that. Leftists want us to accept our lot in life as helpless subjects, dependent on them for everything.
It's time we accepted a hard truth: we're in this mess because we let it happen.
But the left would like us to continue denying that truth and accept the victimhood that they've been promoting. Victimhood is a state of mind in which those suffering from it have given up control. Life's disappointments are someone else's fault. Conversely, life's blessings are a gift from someone else. It's what Barack Obama wanted us to believe when he told business-owners that "you didn't build that." He was telling them that their success wasn't the result of their hard work, but because the government allowed them to be successful. It was a message that the federal government retains the power to make them fail or allow them to succeed — at its whim. He was insisting that they accept victimhood, that any control they think they have is an illusion. In reality, Obama's assertion was an illusion the left would like us to believe.
Embracing such an illusion signals that we have ceded power to the state — which is also ceding power to the left. People who accept victimhood have mentally and emotionally given power over their lives to the state — just as the leftists like it.
That's why the left's language is the language of victimhood:
- We face prejudices in society that can't be fixed with hard work and outreach. We need more government oversight.
- Others are so much wealthier than us that we can't close that gap with hard work. We need more government redistribution.
- Our streets are unsafe, and we don't know how to defend ourselves. We need to sacrifice our freedom for security — provided by the state.
- We fear a viral Armageddon, and thoughtful individual risk management will not save us. We need to give the government emergency powers over our behavior, associations, speech, and medical treatment.
If we accept that belief system, we have no control over our own lives. From there, it's only a small step to accepting state control of everything. That last step into tyranny is exceptionally small but disturbingly consequential.
Many on the right mourn the America we are losing — the land of freedom, equality, and opportunity. But we on the right bear some responsibility for this mess. We are complicit. We cannot blame the left for doing this to us because it wasn't "done to" us. It was done with us. We had the power to say no but didn't. We allowed it to happen by being derelict in our duty as citizens.
In 1967, German student Rudi Dutschke told us that Marxists would do a "long march through the institutions." Well, they did it while we ignored it. The left used the schools to turn our children into loyal subjects. They've used the propaganda media to make us believe a false narrative. Leftists running major corporations have worked to impose their own ideology on us. Government bureaucracy has worked to eliminate freedom and due process. Those who wish to undermine America have used moral relativism to destroy our sense of right and wrong.
All of that has been happening right under our noses since at least the 1960s. All the while, we refused to see and refused to act against it.
We stopped telling our children the importance of freedom because we thought freedom was forever. We let the schools stop teaching civics because we didn't have the time to audit their curricula. We allowed the Constitution to become the most misinterpreted document in America because we didn't read or understand it — and didn't hold those sworn to uphold it accountable for perverting it. We can blame others for our current state if we wish, but we could have prevented it and didn't.
But here's the thing: we can take power back just as easily as we gave it away. The real power of a self-governed people is a state of mind. It's a belief in ourselves and a faith that we will overcome. It's the certain knowledge that our future is not subject to the whims of others — but dependent on our own efforts.
People who successfully bounce back from violence universally say that they refuse to be a victim. They understand that they can be victimized without accepting victimhood. They accept that something bad was done to them but refuse to let it define them. By refusing to accept victimhood, they refuse to let others have dominion over their lives. They take back the power to thrive.
It's time to accept responsibility for our mistakes and take our power back. Acknowledge that we have erred in the past. Our current state is not the fault of evil actors. It's our fault for giving evil actors power over our lives. There is great empowerment in owning one's mistakes. It's the power not to make those mistakes again — ever. Our ability to change our lives returns when we accept accountability and commit to doing the work required to maintain the society which we want.
We need to
- Teach our children good vs. evil.
- Hold "public servants" accountable.
- Be active in government — especially at the local level (where election shenanigans happen).
- Challenge the MSM narrative. There are no alternate realities, and just because some fool with a $200 haircut says something doesn't make it true.
- Celebrate America. It is still a place of pride, not shame.
Our founders believed freedom to be our birthright — a gift from God. But they understood that evil forces would always try to take it from us. They knew that keeping our freedom requires stewardship and, at times, even sacrifice. Our founders pledged their lives, fortunes, and their sacred honor to that duty. Will we make such a commitment — or just feel sorry for ourselves?
John Green is a political refugee from Minnesota, now residing in Idaho. He has written for American Thinker and American Free News Network. He can be followed on Facebook or reached at email@example.com.
Image via Max Pixel.