Monday, July 4, 2011

The God Card

America, from day one, has been bold. The very act of signing the Declaration of Independence would have been considered evidence of treason if we had failed in our endeavor to confront tyranny. Are we a perfect people? Hardly, but our boldness has been part of what defines us and has made our experiment great. Today, we can be proud of many things. Not only do we struggle for peace, justice, liberty, equality, opportunity, and charity in our own land, but we have chosen as a people to share this vision with the world. The United States have always been at our best when we have been a light of the beliefs that inspired our founding. We have been at our worst when we cower and selfishly act to destroy, ignore, or pervert any part of that vision.

It is interesting to note that "God" has been indispensable to the mission of our nation even from the time of settlement (by the White Man). The argument used to claim our independence relied upon the theory that God gives us rights that may not be usurped by man; a bold statement. The belief in a Creator - not to be confused with religion - is the basis for who we are as Americans. The reason for which "in God we trust" is that He holds the key to our argument for why we should be free. Thomas Jefferson could very well have written, "We hold this truth to be self-evident, that all men are born equal with certain unalienable rights." He did not; he played the God card.

As a bold people, our thirst for freedom and rights has endured and grown, and in some ways this can be self-defeating. Many have even asserted their right to be God-less, which does not logically follow my argument, but we afford ourselves this right nevertheless. An unfortunate pitfall in the journey of America is the notion of rights uncoupled with responsibilities. Every man will fail, but we will ultimately not succeed if we do not seek responsibility; that's what leaders do. Otherwise, we are simply impudent. Our mantra of "God Bless America" might seem selfish, were it not for our belief that our country exists only because God gave us the right to operate in this fashion - so it's actually a prayer. When we say or sing, "God Bless America", we are humbly recognizing one of the greatest gifts of our lives. If we are to boldly rescue this country from the fate of obsolescence, which I believe to be imperative, it will be necessary for us to make and keep promises, work toward standing undivided, and, yes, express ourselves in a culture of morality deserving of such a gift.

God Bless America.

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