Today as I finish the book Hamilton and continue reading and researching our political history, while reading many social media posts I have started to wonder, have we forgotten? Now let me start with the reason I blog. Simply to sort thoughts in my mind. I realize few will read the blog and less will agree with my thoughts.
I was shocked to see so many comments and posts leaning towards a believe or ideology that the United States is a failed experiment. I completely disagree, we still have people filled with great spirit. Sadly over the years, with a political environment based on division over unity I see many that seemed trained to chant and express “self hate”.
As we go back to 9/11 – I recall feelings of shock, sadness, confusion and anger, but immediately I saw a the Great American Spirit. Those willing to risk self for others. Those who will put aside the misleading of career political figures, focused solely on self enrichment and power and instead as individuals and community reach up to new heights, heights well about any reasonable expectations.
Even today I see former President GW Bush using the 9/11 anniversary to promote his political views based on division. Sad really. This is one of the reasons I oppose “days or months” – when every group has a day or month the entire premise is diluted. I concur with honoring groups on specific days – Veterans, Military and those who sacrificed self on 9/11 but to change it to Patriots Day as if we should be patriots only one day a year. The goal of inclusion and equality, goals of dignity and respect should not be limited to days but ways of living.
However back to “Have We Forgotten?” As I study history and politics specifically polls of opinions we must look back a few years to 2017 when America’s Trust in Political Leaders dropped to an all time low of 42% – years of decline from a peak under GW Bush first time to almost straight down until 2020 where we have a slight increase, however back to a decline. Why one wonders? The politics of division, the politics of “hate them”, the politics of guilt simply fail. Even worse we lost confidence in Congress and the Supreme Court during the same time to lows of 7% and 30%. Clearly these are not role models, not heroes they are simply employees, paid staff that should be held accountable vs honored. They do not engage in “Public Service” as they love to fraudulently boast, they are paid handsomely and well over value.
What else occurred? While at a high level about 32% identify themselves as Socially Liberal (far less when queried on specific issues) we however had a consolidation of press and education to a view of the minority. this caused a deep decline that Americans had in each other. During the same period only 44% felt they were part of any economic improvement. While records were set for income and asset divide the average American felt omitted from any recovery.
In 2010 about 13% found race relations to be an issue. That grew to 35% as division and difference became the focus over what unites us. This reversed only slightly and is now back in a negative direction.
With all this data review and research I am still very optimistic. I see ground swells of fellow citizens finally engaging in local, State and Federal politics. Moving more towards having their voices heard, holding out employees accountable and hopefully voting much better. I see more Americans rejecting chants that the American Flag and patriotism is negative, irrespective of the woke and media chant. I see more Americans mobilizing to supervise School Boards, local schools and teachers, looking hold them accountable to educate vs share political views or indoctrination.
I think as we see world events we as country are remembering – remembering the feeling of being patriotic, loving our country and investing to make it better.