OPINION – It could just be a raging case of election year fever, but it appears that doom and gloom are back in fashion.
It’s no longer just tinfoil-hat wearers and wide-eyed conspiracy theorists who are obsessing over worst-case scenarios for the country. From the elitists to the masses, the fear is becoming palpable.
What’s the worst thing that could happen to America?
Ask a member of the media, the political establishment or their unelected, deep state cronies and the answer to that question will likely be: Donald Trump as president.
Others would answer the question with a trembling finger pointed toward a potential Hillary Clinton presidency.
In truth, both presumptive candidates have enough of a sociopathic personal agenda to do some serious damage. Then again, the same could be said of virtually every politician who seeks office.
Fear over what might happen as a result of November’s election is blinding us to the reality that the worst thing that could happen to America has already happened.
We have forgotten who we are and what we once stood for.
As a result, the character of America has shifted and changed into something that bears little resemblance to the nation whose birth we pretend to celebrate today.
We’re not the first people to squander a magnificent heritage. It has always been the natural result of failing to understand what came before.
The great Roman orator Cicero warned more than 2,000 years ago, “Not to know what happened before you were born is to remain forever a child.”
Government schooling has served to widen the gap between us and the founding generations to the point that few Americans understand what our ancestors knew.
Joseph Sobran, in his essay “How Tyranny Came to America” wrote:
Our ancestral voices have come to sound alien to us, and therefore our own moral and political language is impoverished. It’s as if the people of England could no longer understand Shakespeare, or Germans couldn’t comprehend Mozart and Beethoven.
Whether this omission is deliberate or not, our lack of familiarity has taken a serious toll on our national character.
Sometimes, in the thralls of chronological snobbery, we’re tempted to assume we are a better people than the founding generation by virtue of our possession of superior knowledge.
While it’s true that we know things they could not have known, it would be a huge mistake to think that simple knowledge equals sound character.
Whatever blind spots our imperfect founders had, their personal character was light years ahead of the vast majority of public leaders we have today. To fully appreciate who they were, you must read their words for yourself.
Most of them were prolific writers and left behind volumes of journals and personal correspondence. Don’t settle for reading what someone else has written about the founders; read their own words.
Going to original sources will quickly dispel many of the politically-correct falsehoods normally taught regarding the founders.
Since today is Independence Day, consider starting with the Declaration of Independence.
In this simple declaration, you’ll find a concise explanation of what good government is and why it is called into existence in the first place. The Declaration of Independence outlines the proper flow of political power, starting with where our natural rights originate and how just government requires consent rather than coercion.
It demonstrates that there is a clear line that proper government cannot cross without becoming abusive and despotic. More importantly, it proclaims that citizens may have to alter or abolish such governments in order to secure their rights.
The Declaration of Independence was an act of defiance.
It was an act of treason to the despot from whom the American colonies were seceding.
It was an act of faith before the Supreme Judge of the world that their desire for self-government was based upon the moral truths of the laws of nature and Nature’s God.
One can almost envision a black-robed member of today’s federal judiciary clutching his chest and groaning at the mere mention of God-given rights.
This is how far we have departed from the founders’ principles and character. We have progressively become enslaved over the course of many generations.
Our government rules, spies on and abuses us with greater ruthlessness than King George ever could have.
Yet we tell ourselves that we’re free and take a day off to go through the motions.
We have largely forgotten who we are and what we once stood for. We no longer possess the character of a free people.
The worst thing that could happen to America happened a long time ago.
What are we, as individuals, willing to do about it?
Bryan Hyde is a news commentator, radio host and opinion columnist in Southern Utah. The opinions stated in this article are his and not representative of St. George News.
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