Sunday, March 7, 2010

Polarized Nation: Why We Must Unite and How We Can Accomplish It

Polarized Nation: Why We Must Unite and How We Can Accomplish It

We hear so much about a divided and polarized America these days, and it's true—we are divided and we are polarized—but we never hear about our need to come together—to unite—and how this can be accomplished. And we never hear about this because very few—if any—of our social/political leaders have the slightest idea concerning how we should go about uniting a society as factious as ours has now become.

I wrote a paper a while back (Political Musings; October, 2009) in which I outlined how a social/political revolutionary movement must make proper use of its nation's symbolic political imagery, which represents the nation's social/political ideology, in order for it to be successful. This is a truth so obvious that it should not have to be outlined at all, yet many people are unaware of the importance of this fundamental truth.

I also mentioned, in the same paper, the climate of fear—a fear that some people, out of frustration, will resort to acts of political violence—that existed at that time and which continues to exist today. Since that time we have seen the shooting at Fort Hood, the man who crashed a small airplane into an IRS building, and, most recently, the Pentagon shooter. The second incident—the guy who crashed a small plane into an IRS building—was, I think, an example of exactly the type of violent acts that people were growing concerned about: violent acts that are committed by people because they have become frustrated with the current political system.

I read, online, the diatribe written by this fifty-something year old plane-crasher-murderer guy and, I have to say, this guy was an idiot. His diatribe, in a nutshell, says "the government is screwing me out of my money!" My response to this is: "Yeah, no shit. You're fifty-something years old and you're just now waking up to this fact?! And your solution is to kill innocent people by crashing an airplane into a building?!" This guy was not just an idiot, he was a murderous idiot.

I was on facebook the day this happened, and I received a link to this guy's diatribe, which was sent to me (on facebook) by the Chicago Tribune (via Scribd), and one of my more radical facebook friends made a post saying that what this guy had done was good: a symbolic act of political violence committed against a broken and oppressive government. My response to her was to quote from this guy's diatribe, wherein he had said "Not only is violence the answer, violence is the only answer" and I pointed out to her that not only is what this guy did wrong but his statement was also wrong: violence is not the only answer, and violent acts which take the lives of innocent peoples are always wrong.

It is obvious that people are frustrated, that people have become factionalized, and that this nation, politically, has become extremely polarized. The question is: What can we do in order to remedy this situation? Under what traditional American principles can we unite?

Well, what would you prefer to hear first; the good news or the bad news? If you're like me, I always prefer to hear the bad news first; because, this way, I still have the good news to cheer me up afterward, right?

The bad news is that some people's sacred cows will have to be sacrificed in order to gain the unity our society so desperately needs, politically speaking. The good news is that in order to unify our society, politically speaking, we simply need to return to our nation's traditional and most fundamental principles, which all Americans (should) hold in common.

I recently wrote an extensive paper of this subject (Broken Government: A Call To Action; February 2010), which was actually a follow-up to my earlier paper (Political Musings; October, 2009), which will reward a careful reading. It is not my intention, here, to re-write something I have already written elsewhere but to flesh-out the ideas I have previously outlined and work-out more of their details.

America has certain, unique, and fundamental principles that cannot be ignored without losing everything that we hold dear about our nation: liberty, freedom, individual rights (e.g., life, property) and the protections of those rights. These are fundamental principles—enshrined in the Declaration of Independence and the U. S. Constitution—upon which all Americans can, or should, agree. I say should, because not all Americans agree with these principles as fundamental sociopolitical realities. Many American, in fact, do not understand—at the philosophical level—these principles, nor do they understand why these principles are so fundamental to America's very being, or existence—at the ontological level.

I don't expect most Americans to know these things; not at the philosophical level anyway. What I do expect is for America's social and political leaders to know these things—at the philosophical and ontological level. (The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, for example, knew these things, which is why his sociopolitical civil rights movement was successful.)

But where are such leaders, today? Not in the White House; not in Congress; not on television . . . and God knows, if you're not on television these day you simply don't exist (i.e., I'm televised; therefore I exist).

I'll give you a very simple example of just how broken, at the philosophical level—our nation currently is and just how wrong-headed our nation's current political "leadership" actually is. You know who the current Vice President of the United States of America is, right? Joseph Biden? Well, I remember something about Joe Biden that he would probably prefer that I'd have forgotten by now: his criticisms, back during the early 1990's, of United States Supreme Court justice nominee (now sitting Justice) Clarence Thomas.

At the philosophical level, Joe Biden doesn't support America's fundamental, foundational principle, which guarantees our individual rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness: natural law.

And neither do most (all?) of our so-called "leaders" in Washington.

So I'm thinking, "What the hell is Joe Biden's problem (with natural law)? Just who in the hell does he think he is anyway?" Natural law is the foundational, philosophical principle upon which the Founders of this nation based all of our rights, and Biden et al take issue with this principle? What? They would refuse, today, to sign the Declaration of Independence? Who in the hell do these guys think they are? They think they're wiser than the Founders of this nation were? Hmm, I don't think so; not by a long shot. In fact, people like Biden—who deny natural law—are just the opposite: they are fools. More like Demolitionists of this great nation than they are Founders.

As I said, this is just one, important example of just off-track—at the philosophical level—our nation has gotten. This rejection of natural law— by Biden and most others—has been going on for many, many years now. This undermining of natural law has been the legal basis for denuding the Bill of Rights: our rights no longer come from nature and nature's God (natural law), they now come from men in high government places (positive law) and this is how our government has been taking them away.

Think about it: if men and governments give us our rights, then men and governments can also take away those same rights, which is exactly what's been happening. But if our rights come from nature and nature's God then they are inalienable rights, which men and governments can never take away.

Which do you prefer?

This philosophical and legal problem in American needs to be fixed, soon, before we have no rights left to us at all.

Think about it like this, our nation was like a house that was built upon a rock (i.e., natural law) and it withstood, for many years, the storms which blew against it. Then, slowly, over time, a group of people convinced (i.e., lied to) the owners of the house (i.e., the People) and got them to agree to move their house from one place, which was upon a rock (i.e., natural law), to another place, which was upon sand (i.e., positive law).

(You've probably seen, at some time or another, those guys who will actually lift an entire house and transport it from one place to another.)

Well, after a while, as the storms continued to beat upon this house, the house began to break apart and collapse, because it had been moved from its (formerly) solid foundation—the rock—to its present foundation: sand.

"Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it" (Matthew 7: 24-27).

The People have been putting up with this for far too long now. The people of this nation—especially the Christian people, who believe in natural law, as the Founders did—need to unite and set things right. It's time to set things right, to put America back upon its proper, legal and philosophical track. If we fail to do so, we will be allowing those fools in Washington to continue demolishing our nation. Do we think those criminals/politicians in Washington are better than we are, even though they have proven—repeatedly—they are not? Will we continue to sit back and do nothing while they continue to ruin our nation's economy, continue to get our children killed in distant foreign lands, and continue to drive us toward a greater war with the world, which could actually threaten the very security of our homes and our lives here in America?

Will we do nothing? Or will we begin setting things right, as we should have done long ago?

Well, I told you that someone's sacred cows were going to be sacrificed, didn't I?

Those who look to the government for hand-outs (bail-outs?) are in for some bad news: America, philosophically, was never intended to have a federal government that would bail us out, or provide us with health-care, or pay us farm subsidies, or send us a retirement check, or pay us for anything; nor was ever intended to collect income (and the many other) taxes in order to be able to do so. These sorts of things, which we have so gotten used to—like a heroin addict who gets used to his fix—were not born upon the American philosophical soil of individual liberty and freedom but were born upon the sandy soils of philosophically foreign lands: communism and socialism.

Does this mean that someone who is an American citizen does not have the right to espouse a communist or socialist philosophy? That such a person should be considered un-American for doing so? No! If someone wishes to work toward building a philosophically socialistic and communistic-based government here in America I say: "Go ahead and try to do so, if you wish. And good luck with that, because you're going to need it."

America—historically and philosophically—acknowledges the truth: that our rights derive from nature and from nature's God. The Founders intended us to have a government that insured the protection of our inalienable, God-given rights; and this protection of our rights is what allows us, our families, our friends, and our communities to help others if and when they need our help, because we wish to do the right thing (i.e., helping others) out of the goodness of our hearts and out of obedience to Christ's command to love our neighbors.

If someone wants to espouse a communist or socialist alternative—a system wherein people have their money taken from them by the government and then distributed to those whom the government thinks are more deserving of that money—I say, "Good luck trying to get the American people, who value liberty and freedom, to buy into such a coercive system as that." Why attempt to reconstruct our national house upon the sand, which has already proven its instability (as a philosophical foundation) instead of constructing it upon the rock which our Founders knew was the only sure foundation upon which to built a nation of liberty and freedom?

The sociopolitical philosophies of communism and socialism do not contain the elements of individual liberties and freedoms, which are founded upon natural law and are enshrined within our nation's founding documents: the Declaration of Independence and the U. S. Constitution. And it is for this reason that a communist or socialist revolution could never succeed in this nation. These foreign philosophies have been smuggled into our government and into our society, in the name of helping others who are less fortunate, but such foreign philosophies are now, finally, being discovered for what they really are: communist and socialist utopian counterfeits of Christ's earthly kingdom of love and compassion, which can only be brought about by his love and his grace—and not by government coercion.

"On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. 'Teacher,' he asked, 'what must I do to inherit eternal life?' 'What is written in the Law?' he replied. 'How do you read it?' He answered: 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' 'You have answered correctly,' Jesus replied. 'Do this and you will live.' But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?" In reply Jesus said: 'A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he fell into the hands of robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, took him to an inn and took care of him. The next day he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper. 'Look after him,' he said, 'and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.' 'Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?' The expert in the law replied, 'The one who had mercy on him.' Jesus told him, 'Go and do likewise'" (Luke 10:25-37; NIV).

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