Authored by William Robert Barber
As a child I was taught the traditional adaptation of America and throughout my maturing years these teachings were institutionally reinforced. I do distinctively remember standing amongst my classmates: right hand over my heart, facing the stars & stripes, and reciting the pledge of allegiance. Every morning, vis-à-vis this pledge of fidelity, the traditional adaptation of America was proclaimed, reinforced, and convincingly validated within my heart and mind. I was a believer.
Well, after many years of posturing as an errant knight, wholly focused on chasing the shadows of what did not exist, the great god of circumstance and serendipity propelled my helter-skelter traverse through the gauntlet of life’s variant of illusions, misdirections, and factoids. As if a falling leaf vectored by the wind inclined to favor the fatuous, disengaged from any sense of rational or reasonable, I disregarded lucid thoughts. Then, one fine day I awoke and took measure of my world.
The experience abated my naivety and induced a degree of cognitive enhancement; such activated my heretofore indifferent to benign cerebral into analytical action. The result of such action was the recognition that America’s founding documents were in reality a theme of fragile ideals. These noble ideals were fragile because they were susceptible to perverse distortions; I ascertained that the America I was taught as a child was never a genuine fact of being, but a comforting perception that resembled a wish more than a reality.
However, and withstanding America’s reality, the ideals’ Leitmotive in America’s founding documents are profound examples of the working pluralism of differing and competing ideals. Ideals that despite the at times confrontational differing the convention of the peoples’ representatives agreed on a constitutional document that valued the individual and pronounced liberty as the prima verities of governing.
Withstanding the meaningfulness of the historically unique event of 1789, a document is nothing more than a compendium of words. Words require commensurate action. And action depends on people and people are a variable of good, bad, indifferent, unpredictably, as well as instigators and practitioners of dysfunctional behavior. America is an ideal in the making and that making invariably depends on its people. This democratic republic has proven its desire to correct and amend; it has strived to remedy and satisfy; faults and deficiencies aside, America is a country with a genuine inclination to do what’s righteous.
A truth: from forces within and external liberty is besieged by the constant threat of diminution; the price of and for liberty is nothing less than a continuum of recompense in diligence and blood. In its finality, to sustain its meaningfulness, liberty is substantive only if one is willing to risk and even loose one’s life. Additionally, liberty is a virtue whose vitality requires a consciousness of judiciously applied skepticism. The fact is government and its role in governing requires a stringent adherence to a deft sense of askance. Governmental authority either explicit or implied, even in a democratic republic, must be limited if one is to remain a free people.
President Obama offers to those that have less, the certainty of financial assurances and warranties; he implies that education is free and that health services are a right of citizenship. He has explicitly lied, embellished, misdirected, and habitually offset the truth of the matter to exact a political initiative. The president and his cadre of liberal progressives have advantaged the traditional ideals of America to serve their definition of the greater good. They have done so by diverting the rights of the individual in favor of the illusive collective.
Lenin could not distinguish his perception of governing from President Obama’s. Both politicians as a perquisite to implementing their governing tenets must siphon and deplete the élan, ethos, and accepted meaningfulness of liberty. A democratic republic cannot exist without liberty. Individual liberty is the prize.