How blessed we are to live in the land of the free and the home of the brave! We have it so good here that it’s easy to take it for granted and I’m afraid many of us do, including yours truly. But the 4th of July is a good time to reflect on all we have and ask ourselves some probing questions.
The first question to ask is what is “Americanism”? There was lots of dialogue about such issues in our election last fall but I don’t believe there were sufficient answers. One of the ways to answer the question is with a new book entitled “Rediscovering Americanism” by Mark Levin, who was a top advisor to several members of the Reagan administration, including Chief of Staff for Attorney General, Edwin Meese. Mark also does daily radio and TV broadcasts.
In his book, Mark goes into great detail to define Americanism and its roots as well as its adversaries; it’s hard to do it justice here in 500 words. But the simplest way I know to get at the heart of it is by the second sentence of the Declaration of Independence:
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, 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.”
These are marvelous words that many of us have heard since childhood. It may be hard for us to believe as seniors, especially here in the south, that there are many among us who disagree with at least the spirit of these words if not the words themselves. Not only do they disagree, but they are in open rebellion to them and are doing their utmost to bring about a counter revolution by redefining the terms of our basic documents including our constitution.
This counter revolution has many allies including the media, education, from elementary school through graduate school, the arts, many of our churches, and government.
You may say, we just had an election that gave power to the more conservative party in all three branches of our federal government. I would agree with you with the caveat that “The conservative party” is not all that conservative. But today, there is a fourth branch of government that our founding fathers never anticipated and to a great extent its forces, which don’t change much after elections, are in revolt against our declaration and constitution. This fourth branch of government is the administrative branch. I dealt with a couple of those agencies first hand, The EPA and NHTSA, The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration back in the 70’s. They implement thousands of new regulations (laws) annually and act as judge and jury when it comes to enforcing them. That was four decades ago and its only gotten worse since then.
While most of these departments were born of good intentions, some were established as political favors. I’m not advocating that we do away with agencies of the federal government but I would like to see much stronger oversight by our congress to direct, monitor and control their reach into every aspect of our life.
I wish I had more time and space to discuss these things but I’ll have to stop here. If these issues resonate with you at all I’d encourage you to get a copy of Mark’s book, Rediscovering Americanism. I’m sure it will be enlightening.
Thanks for reading All About Seniors…..see you next week!
PS Hope you enjoyed your freedom on the 4th!
Bill Milby, CSA, is a Certified Senior Advisor and a Director of Visiting Angels® of Macon, a non-medical, living assistance service for seniors. If you have questions or comments about this column you can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or search for us at https://www.facebook.com/VisitingAngelsofCentralGA/