For years the media and radical left have been fighting to divide Americans, destroy our national identity, and dissolve the fabric of our society, the belief “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.” In its place, they have inserted a brainwashed culture that believes that just by having the wrong skin color you are inherently racist and lack empathy, that there are gross disparities between Americans of different skin color due to systemic racism, and that certain communities will be forever guilty of their ancestors’ past sins.
Ultimately, the media and radical left have been waging a war of identity politics, attacking our very foundation as racist and backward, despite the freedom and wealth it has provided to so many of us in today’s America. This war ignores the fact that a vast majority of people could care less about race and politics and would rather focus their time caring for their families and being good neighbors. Yet, the media continues to peddle perpetual racist snobbery that makes us hate each other. This is neither productive nor healthy.
In place of this media-focused campaign of self-loathing and woke ideology, Americans need to push back and reiterate the concepts of life, liberty, and happiness, remembering that we are created equally. This refocuses on basic foundational principles that will realign our nation’s thinking, and strengthen a shared cultural background, regardless of skin color.
A strong political leader has the awesome capacity to develop this mindset once more. Consider the words of John W. Gardner, who explained that leaders have the “significant role in creating the state of mind that is the society. They can serve as symbols of the moral unity of the society [and]… [m]ost important[ly], they can conceive and articulate goals that lift people out of their petty preoccupations.”
Our Founding Fathers understood this when they wrote the Declaration of Independence. They were building a foundation for society’s state of mind, for shared moral unity, and with an expectation that where society failed, new goals and aspirations could be created to fill the gaps. The Founders understood that they were fallible, imperfect and that society would need to continually grow and develop to meet the people’s needs. However, this would only succeed if the first three priorities remained: life, liberty, and happiness.
In comparison to today’s secular society, the Founders had a distinct theological perspective on life. They followed a Judeo-Christian approach that established the fact that they were created by God. And because there was a God, they believed they should live their lives and govern in a particular way, something which has been lost to so many postmodern, woke ideologists.
The Founders would have been familiar with two key biblical verses. First, when Jesus explains that Christians “shall love their neighbor as yourself,” (Matthew 22:39), and second, in 1 Corinthians 10:24 the Apostle Paul writes, “[l]et no one seeks his own, but each one the other’s well-being.” Both of these verses teach that we should live altruistically in nature, putting the needs of others before ourselves. Selfish and egoistic behavior is not fulfilling or rewarding in itself, plus it only tears apart the relationships we have with others. We all know someone who is completely self-absorbed, and it’s the last person you want to spend time with, and probably one of the last people you’re willing to trust.
If, or when, our society returns to an altruistic style of leadership and living, our society will be forever transformed. Instead of focusing on tearing each other down, the focus will be on lifting each other up. No longer would society accept or be sucked into the left’s hype and craze over identity politics and woke ideology that aims to divide, not bring people together. This is where the astute political leader, as Gardner referenced above, could step forward to unite all of America and create moral unity.
This leader could follow the same thought process that fueled William Penn when he named Philadelphia, the premise that we should exhibit brotherly love. Our nation is only as strong as the bonds we have together with our fellow countrymen. If we fail to love our neighbor (because of skin color or political beliefs), or if we fail to put the needs of others before our own, our society will continually slide into a mire of despair and unhappy, self-loathing interactions with our own fellow citizens.
So, where has our brotherly love gone? It’s still there, just beneath the surface. The media and woke ideologists try to tamp it down; they teach that we should hate one another because of our differences. But we have all seen the worthlessness of these thoughts, and how most of our neighbors want nothing to do with this callous ideology.
Now is the time to completely stamp it out. America is tired of being scolded and chastised for crimes they didn’t commit; their patience is thin. It’s time for an altruistic leader to step forward and lead with moral clarity, not woke talking points. The first leader to do this successfully will reap the rewards of the electorate’s trust and confidence.