America Cannot Survive If Its Citizens Lack Pride

I suspect that the people around me grow weary of hearing me say “when I was young.” That is, however, the only way I can gauge the times in which we live. As Patrick Henry famously said, “I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided; and that is the lamp of experience. I know of no way of judging the future but by the past.”

The past I remember is that of a nation that loved and took pride in its history, freedom, and treasured institutions. Obviously, that is no longer true. That wealth of national pride has been turned on its head. While hubris has long been viewed as a serious character flaw, little is ever said about a deficiency of pride or what may happen to a society when pride becomes scant or nonexistent.

Pride in our history and system of governance, in one’s accomplishments, and in one’s home, property, and offspring are all ingredients for a healthy, prosperous, and civil society. When there is no pride, things fall apart. Where there is no pride in one’s work, there is poor production or unemployment. Where there is no pride in one’s home, there is squalor and decay. Where there is no pride in one’s family, there is dysfunction.

Who would want to defend a country that makes them ashamed? How many would fastidiously feather a nest that is not their own? Not many people would spend a great deal of their time on something that has no value to them and in which they take no pride.

Image: Columbia astride the global (1890). Public domain.

The political left is working to strip away the grandeur of all we once held dear in this country and then recasting it as an evil enterprise deserving of our contempt and mistrust. If you want to snuff out the American system, all that is required is to denigrate the things that make people proud. American history, the Constitution, free enterprise, hard work, private property, a merit-based economy, and ultimately the Bill of Rights and liberty are those things most often targeted for disparagement.

Even some of our cherished religious institutions have joined in the fray. They cast aspersions on private property as “…a secondary natural right” and as subordinated “to the universal destination of the Earth’s goods, and thus the right of all to their use.” Perhaps someone should remind the Pope, whose words I quoted, that without private property as a driving force, there is no incentive to produce, no pride of ownership, and ultimately just slavery to the state and destitution (i.e. communism).

These foolish ideas flourish in our universities as well.

Often, today’s young people support socialism and communism. China is held up to them as the real and true “shining city on a hill.” As part of their education, they should be required to spend time in Cuba, Venezuela, or rural China, where trillions of western dollars have not yet found their way into the pockets of indigent citizens. Or maybe their professors should be required to make that pilgrimage as well. Either way would work but, somehow, the children (and adults) of America’s shrinking middle class must be made to understand what they have and what it is that they are demanding.

Having poured untold American taxpayer dollars into a Chinese renaissance, we’ve now turned the open dollar spigot on Ukraine in a misguided effort to oust Vladimir Putin. What we may accomplish is to drive the Chinese into bed with Russia. Our thirty-year investment in China would then be turned against us, and all the billions in military hardware that we are now investing in Ukraine would, as with Afghanistan, be left for our enemies to harvest. Or we can start WWIII with NATO and the United States pitted against at least two nuclear superpowers. God help us.

Never mind that our national debt creeps toward unsustainable levels. Never mind that our own infrastructure is crumbling or that a two-year invasion of our southern border continues to accelerate. Never mind that inflation reaches new heights, and crime in many cities is out of control.

Irresponsibility is still the soup of the day within our government. We have no money left to lavish on the state’s inane climate change religion or on reckless wars. But even conservative politicians who have made their careers by decrying the national debt are still content to go whistling past the graveyard.

If our feckless spending continues, at some point, we will be overwhelmed by our debt, and even the deep state government will be forced by reality into fiscal tyranny. That has been the left’s plan all along. Whether our system can survive that storm is an open question. They’re betting that it can’t.

One man, more than any other, was willing to confront this grim state of affairs and, having been elected President, he was subsequently investigated endlessly and impeached twice based on absolutely nothing. He continues to be a target of the American left more than two years after leaving the White House. While in office, he was able to begin the process of domestic renewal, and he returned some measure of sanity to our foreign policy. Most of his efforts were reversed in 2021 after Joe Biden’s electoral “victory.”

Donald Trump’s simple motto, MAGA, encouraged the nation once again to take pride in its heritage and the promise of American freedom and prosperity. Who could find fault with the idea that we should strive to make America great again? It has, however, become a scarlet letter to the swamp monsters and leftists who now run the country, and they seldom miss an opportunity to demonize its adherents or mobilize the government against those who might pick up that banner.

That these swamp creatures loathe the constitution they’ve sworn to support and defend should be obvious to all by now. They fear and despise the prospect that America might once again be a proud nation. It’s past time that the veil was lifted off these administrative aristocrats so Americans can see them for the tyrants they truly are. Then, perhaps, we can begin to restore the country that we were once so proud of.

Frank Liberato is a pseudonym.

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