Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Sweet November Rain Dance

The election showdown is pretty much set for later this year. Previously, I have endorsed two candidates from different parties who did not pan out. Given that track record, I will not go for a third at this time. Let us not forget, though, what this election – perhaps more so than any since before the Second World War – means for the nation. As “We, the People” celebrate the 236th year of our country’s “birth,” there is a polarized divide that threatens to tear it apart. While we have not reached the austere levels of other countries, there is, hyperbole aside, a tinderbox simmering underneath simply waiting for the proper spark to ignite it. No longer simply “Bleeding Kansas.” Just bleeding.

Is life so dear or peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!” 
-Patrick Henry

The recent Supreme Court 5-4 decision upholding the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”) handed to the federal government one of the largest overreaches into the private affairs of American citizens in the nation’s history. While access to certain privileges is one thing (but not a “right”), governmental coercion that threatens “penalties” for non-compliance is tyranny. Yet, illegal aliens stream across the border everyday without question or consequence, benefiting from our benevolence while draining already-strained resources and taxpayer dollars. In Chief Justice John Roberts' Warren moment, will Obama thank former President Bush and the appointment of Roberts during his administration for the victory?

"There is danger from all men. The only maxim of a free government ought to be to trust no man living with power to endanger the public liberty." 
-John Adams

Why did the Roman Empire fall? See the preceding paragraph. No longer able to sustain the defense of its borders, a continuous influx of foreigners – some who were once sworn enemies – and the weight of the burden they placed on the shrinking Empire fed its eventual collapse. Around the world, from Asia to the Americas, the same fate is true for almost all of the once great civilizations:  the inability to maintain their culture due to poor foresight by leadership in dealing with the unrestrained pressures thrust upon them. Is history repeating itself, or at least rhyming?

As a nation, we have treaded the precipice numerous times throughout our history. Will we again believe and aspire to what is, and can be, great about the United States, or reflect and mourn the glory that once was like so many past cultures and societies turned to ash by their own hubris? Happy birthday USA…let’s hope it will not be the last, or that history never forgets those who have unselfishly shaped, defended and sacrificed since that first “shot heard ‘round the world.” 

©2012 Steve Sagarra

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